November 23, 2010 – San Diego / Santee

The NWS forecast showed a 70% chance of rain. But my 1 night hotel reservation was non-refundable so I went anyway. Sure enough the precipitation started about half way into my drive, which was made slower by multiple accidents. Here are 3 of the 8 that I saw.

Offramp spinout:

Crashed and spun around backwards: (different accident)

I’d hoped to cache on the Ocean Beach bike path before checking in at the hotel. But THOUSANDS of raincoated people were walking on it for some kind of event. Plan B was a return to Fiesta Island to pick off a few new caches.

Afterward I had lunch & wi-fi at McD while it rained and then checked in. When the rain stopped I drove to the inland end of the bike path. There were no walkers and I found 5 of 7 caches. The 2 DNFs were a micro in wet vegetation and one with multiple other DNFs in a field of homeless geotrash.

The horrendous wet weather traffic cut short my attempt to find more urbans. The cache in the tree behind the statue was another DNF. I went back to the hotel & slept for 12 straight hours.

I woke up to sunshine, checked out and drove 15 minutes to a big empty public park in Santee, across the street from multiple trailheads. (It’s not the West Hills in the San Fernando Valley.) It was now cloudy again but still dry.

Here’s the view North from the trailhead.

The first cache contained no log. So I signed the container.

I’d found 1 more cache when a huge rain cell reached the area. I ran into a rock formation for cover. It didn’t help much. Here’s the view back to the trailhead.

A very nearby flash of lightning (no thunder) persuaded me to get back down the hill, fast. On the way I saw a carcass. The skull & major bones were gone but I think it used to be a small coyote.
Back at the sidewalk my GPSr showed a cache 300’ up the street. I found that one in the pouring rain and then another one in the parking lot. Grand total for the day was 4 caches instead of the 35-40 planned!! I now know where the trailheads are so I’m eager to go back. Of course, the rain stopped a few miles into my 145 mile drive home and it was sunny the rest of the way.

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