Sunday, June 26, 2011

Hiking: Burned out cars in Belmont

The San Francisco peninsula has tons of open spaces and terrific hiking areas. One of my favorite sites, Bay Area Hiker, does a great job of giving you all the info needed to find good hikes. Armed with an iPhone and the Geocaching app (or old school, using a GPS and the website), you can find all sorts of unexpected things along the trails.

Recently the little dog and I have been hiking in Belmont and we've noticed an odd thing: burned out / rusted cars. On the trails, far from any actual roads.

No road nearby
The first we found was off the Chaparral Trail in Water Dog Lake Park. At the time, I didn't have my geocaching equipment with me, but there is a geocache around here I think. A note on the website says this car is "maintained" by the park rangers.

The second one we found off the trail in the Sugarloaf / Laurelwood Park. We came in via the entrance off Laurel Creek Road, taking the Salson Trail. This was a weekday hike and the park was silent - when something shifted in the car, little dog and I both startled. It was almost guaranteed to be wildlife moving around, but too many years in San Francisco made me suspicious someone was living in it and since there was no cell coverage in that area - I didn't stick around to take photos. Next time!

Finally, the third one we've found was again in the Belmont open preserve space, along the Rambler trail heading toward Canyon Creek Trail. 

Car Bridge?
This one was just super-cool in my opinion. How on earth that car got there, I can't imagine - but to make it part of the trail was a very cool idea. 

Hipstamtic shot of the car bridge from the other side

It's still a mystery to me how these got down into these canyons. All of the cars seem to be from around the 50's, so maybe there was a road through here before. Highway 280 isn't far away, so there could have been a road through the hills and mountains. 

I'll leave you with this final mystery:

The sign is so old the tree grew around it. Trail is only 2 feet wide.

-- Happy Hiking!