Baldwin Lake Hike Through a Cyclone

Two months ago I was bunkered down in an apartment in Bangalore as torrential rains flooded the cow shit filled streets. I was a long way from Baldwin Lake, California.We did not leave the apartment for two days because it was raining sideways, harder than I had ever seen in my life and frankly I was disgusted at the thought of wading through water up to my ankles that had cow feces floating in it. I feel like this should be how Mad Cow Disease is spread.  Luckily we got the hell out of Bangalore a few days after Cyclone Vardah tore through Chennia to the south of where we were staying. I figured that was my last instance with cyclones for quite a while.

I mean, I live in sunny southern California, where cyclones, hurricanes and typhoons are barely heard of. Unless, rarely, one strikes the Baja region to the south every few years.

Than today happened. Every one in my small ski town is stocking up on Miller High Life and Cigerattes (I never said this was a classy place. Aspen Colorado it is not) at the local grocery store and as I drove my Subaru to my favorite hiking spots this morning the roads were voided of most cars.

It seems like most people are already bunkered down and waiting for this massive storm to hit us. But Im not most people. As I gazed out at the backyard this a.m. it was partly sunny and windy as all hell but it looked like a gorgeous day. So I dressed my dog in her favorite sweater and drove towards the PCT (Pacific Crest Trail)

Hearing of a cyclone warning in southern California is so bizarre and unheard of. At nine a.m. the sun was trying to shine and it was such an amazingly gorgeous day with the storm building to the south.PCT Baldwin Lake

So I decided to go for a hike anyways.

Actually I decided to do every hike in Big Bear Lake.

First I drove to Baldwin Lake and snapped a few photos of water.

In Baldwin Lake.Baldwin Lake

Baldwin Lake is actually the only natural lake in our mountain communities but these days it is always, always dry. This year for the first time I can remember in about ten years there is actually water in Baldwin Lake and it’s very pretty (And walking distance from our house, yea) This is where we mountain bike in the dry lake bed in the spring and summer.

After taking a few photos I got back in my Subaru with the pup and continued on towards the PCT. We are so blessed here in Big Bear Lake that there are multiple places you can pick up the PCT for a quick hike.

Or you can hike to Canada.

This morning I decided to bushwhack off trail just a bit and I’m so glad I did! I got this gorgeous view of Baldwin Lake!Baldwin Lake

I can’t wait to take all my friends hiking back to this spot! It’s super easy to get to off a little pirate trail off the PCT and the view is just phenomenal!

I wanted to get some photos of Big Bear Lake with the clouds building behind it so I drove back to the others side of town as the massive wind gusts were building, pushing my Subaru all over our winding mountain roads. You can’t boss me around wind! I will just turn the Tim McGraw up louder!

Carly and I did another little hike between Holcomb Valley and Fawnskin but the winds were getting crazy intense (Like snow blowing into my eyeballs intense) and it looked like the clouds were building up extremely fast! I started to worry about how smart it was to off road up Polique Canyon Road towards Holcomb Valley if the real rain started soon.

And that’s when I decide we were done being storm chasers for one day. It was such a gorgeous day out in the valley this morning and after a little hike the pup and I are ready to sit back and relax and enjoy a rainy cyclone kind of Friday!