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Pinhead Peak Professional Review and Guide
"The view from the visitor center is impressive, but from Pinhead Peak it’s even better. Here you can look down on the three-way confluence of dry creekbeds—San Juan, Bell, and Verdugo— and spot the toylike visitor center perched atop the knoll between the first two."
--Jerry Schad and David Money Harris, Afoot & Afield: Orange County (Wilderness Press).
This quick, but satisfying, hike is one that should be done as part of a nice day at Caspers Wilderness Park. As a stand-alone trek, it's a bit short to justify the trip to the park but well worth walking, nonetheless.
On the day we went, the chapparal grasses and wildflowers were knee to ankle-high which obscured portions of the trail if you're watching out for slithery critters or potholes created by ground-dwelling rodents and the equine modes of transport that also utilize the trail.
The oak accented trail is relatively flat as it enters a wee valley between ridges but then climbs steeply up to the exposed top. A "false peak" fools you into thinking you've reached the top after the climb, as you discover that you've got just a little more climbing to do to bag this peak. Portions of the climb were pretty dusty from use, so watch your footing and be sure to take your camera to snap some nice shots looking up and down the Ortega Hwy corridor.
Combine this with the Oak Trail loop and you've got yourself a nice day at Caspers Wilderness Park.
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