Putah Creek, Winters, CA

It’s all fun and games until you hit the stairs.

The Homestead Trail at Putah Creek, just off of HWY128, starts as a nice leisurely hike. Don’t let that fool you. A 1,200 foot climb within 2 or 3 miles isn’t so friendly. Or I’m out of shape. Hope it isn’t the latter.

At least the view is worth it. Annie’s Rock, just past Tuleyome Trail isn’t even marked on the map, but if you keep pushing up the ridge, the view afforded is wonderful. Outcrops of granite allow a nice spot for lunch and a show. You can see as far as the atmosphere will let you. Of course, the trip up there is nice. Try it out during Winter for a chilly good time.

Putah Creek, near Lake Berryessa

I did get a chance to try out two near pieces of gear: The North Face Paramount Tech Tee and an Arc’Teryx Atom LT Jacket.  A quick word on that: looks good, fits well, though sweat dissipation didn’t see to be as good as I had hoped. The high output hike up the hill left my back sweaty and clammy feeling. The North Face tee just couldn’t keep up, and took longer to dry off, even with my pack off. The good thing though, a cheap $35 get’s you a plush feeling technical t-shirts for lighter sessions.

The Atom LT: perfectly suited to colder climates. Temps in the nooks fell to what seemed like 40F. I hardly felt it with the insulated jacket on. In fact, I got warm way too fast. The plus side is I love feeling like I’m wearing a puffy sleepy bag on at all times. Warm and toasty adventure.

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