The 2011 Potreros Tour, Part III

Downbound Train:
Santa Barbara Potrero to Willow Flat

Santa Barbara Potrero

The next morning the sun crept over the ridge and roused us from our slumber. We picked around the potrero a bit and then headed down to the site of the old Sierra Madre guard station, later converted to Santa Barbara Potrero Campground (no longer shown on the maps).

Lizard double take

Sierra Madre Guard Station No. 1

We pulled a few pots of water from Oak Spring and scrubbed up a bit. Afterward we cooked up some breakie in preparation for the toe-pounding miles down the last bit of Sierra Madre and Big Pine/Buckhorn Roads.

Judell Trailhead

Only cloud all day

And a toe-pounding it was. Even with a pack weight reduced to the point it felt as though all we were carrying was an assortment of cotton balls, the feet took something of a beating. This is not to say of course I didn’t execute the traditional “you wanna ring the bell?” sprint of the last 100 yards and subsequent Rocky dance at the end, but enough of a beating we were glad to load the packs into the truck and head for the Burger Barn for the traditional bleu cheese burger.

And so the Sierra Madre Road — end to end — has been traversed.

The list grows short.


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