April 20, 2009

Holcomb Valley

We just got back from two nights at Holcomb Valley, just north of Big Bear lake. Legend has it that in the 1850's Bill Holcomb was out hunting and wounded a grizzly bear in Polique Canyon. He tracked the bear over the ridge where this photo was taken, and while looking for blood tracks, found gold in the valley that would soon "bear" his name.

The Boy Scouts have a camp in the valley, and our good friends Paul and Linda run the place. We went with our friends Wendy, Jana and Robert, and the six of us had a real good time. Paul and Linda treated us like royalty all weekend, and we got to tour the 400 acres on quad-runners, shoot rifles and shotguns, hike and stay in one of the cabins instead of camping in the cold.

Riding the quads was incredible fun, but it did kind of go against the environmentalist in me. While we were out, we saw several deer, and the sun-bleached bones of several horses who had spent their last summer in the valley. We also poked around the remaining buildings of the Hitchcock Ranch, the predecessor to the Scout Camp.

I put together a short, three-and-a half minute video of our weekend, but it doesn't even come close to showing how much fun we had. Never the less, enjoy.

By popular demand, here is another three-minutes of video from our trip.


Anonymous said...

this was my best weekend in California so far! Out with good friends and nature what more could you want?!

George said...

Enjoyed the Holcomb Valley stuff. Took me back to the wrangler job I
had when I was in high school and college. Spent a lot of time doing pack
trips out of a place called Hawes Ranch, leased from the owners of the Las
Flores Ranch (where Deep Creek meets the Mojave Desert). The Hitchcock
Ranch was still in operation back then and range cattle were all over the
place. Hawes Ranch, originally a fox farming operation, was taken back by
the USFS in a land swap with the Las Flores folks and all the neat old stuff
was bulldozed. I hiked in there a couple of years ago (because the road has
been destroyed too) and all that is left now is a pile of rocks left over
from one of the chimneys. The USFS could eff up a wet dream.