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Took a short day hike into the Chumash Wilderness Area Saturday. It started at Camp Three Falls, BSA, climbs gently 2 1/4 miles up a wide trail to a waterfall then proceeded another mile up to Lilly Campground. That last mile felt like I was walking up a stair case almost the entire distance.

I got a late start (of course) so it was half past noon and 91 deg. when I finally got under way. Trailhead started at about 5000 ft. elevation and the turn around point was at 6600 ft. Some monsoonal moisture came in to produce some clouds (good) and some humidity (yuk). I obeyed all wilderness regulations including not bringing a hang glider. My pack was a Camelback with a 100 oz bladder. Included was the usual camera, Sierra cup, first aid kit, 50 ft paracord, space blanket, duct tape, an assortment of snacks, maps and multiple compasses, 3 way to make fire, 3 ways to purify water, 3 light sources, 3 emergency signal methods and three blades. (The main blade is a 4 3/8 inch Swiss Army Hunter) Compared to the water, the weight of everything else was insignificant.

The scenery was beautiful with no shortage of wildflowers of every description. Manzanita apples were still green and the wild roses were blooming but their hips were too small to be worth eating. Thistle was in full bloom and is quite edible. The dry wash crossed the trail in many places and didn't look promising in the slightest but if you continued up stream you still found the waterfall flowing. All that water went completely underground within 100 ft. of the fall.

Lilly Campground is commonly used by the Scouts and has some convenient fire rings and wing breaks already constructed. There is a year round creek nearby. I laid down and fell asleep for an hour before turning back.

One last note. I had placed my belt pouch containing my camera on the roof of my car when I took my pack off. Stupidly I left it there when I drove off. I heard it slide off the roof at 60 mph and watched it bounce along on the road behind me thru my rear view mirror. Fearing the worst I turned around to pick it it. The pouch had unzipped itself but the camera was still mostly inside. Amazingly there was only one small dent on a corner and some small cosmetic scuff marks. I checked it out and it still worked perfectly. That tough camera is a Canon-G10.


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