Mount Rubidoux

A mountain seeping in American pride and the love of God. Captivating views of the city make the long ascent worth it. Sleep deprived sunrise chasers – I don’t know why my friends join me on these adventures. Awake in the early hours of the day and at the peak before dawn we waited for the morning sun. It seems like we have climbed, hiked and adventured our way through every crevice of our inland empire. Mount Rubidoux had yet to be conquered together so it had to be the first adventure over the short break we all shared. Thinking that the sun rose at 6 we set off around 5 to meet up and reach the peak. Taking in the sweeping views of a slumbering city as we climbed, we knew the sunrise would be a treat. We reached the peak right around 6 in the morning but the sun wouldn’t greet us for another hour. Huddled up we avoided the wind and got a chance to catch up with each other and communicate the latest chapter of our lives. As if the fall semester had never occurred, as if we had ever gone our separate ways to Arizona, Colorado and respective areas of Southern California, we joked and laughed and the cool windy morning felt like summertime. The sun finally rose and in all majesty painted the sky. This was about more than a sunrise or a hike or sore calves, this was about reconnecting with the friends who have withstood the tests of time and distance.

Photograph and content by Alex Rager

The Rope Trail

It’s about midnight and I am unable to sleep. I text my friend for added entertainment and end up convincing myself and him that a 4am hike up the notorious yet familiar ‘rope trail’ was a great way to start the weekend. I stumble out of bed before dawn to pick up my friend on about three hours of sleep. The moon guided us along the dusty main path in a hiking spot known as Skyline. We make our way through the trail on the lookout for the entrance. This concealed rabbit hole leads any who know of it into a fantastical path that is notorious in my area. This arduous hiking path is not for the faint of heart, for it requires bouldering, coordination and sometimes a miracle. Reach the top and you feel accomplished and alive while looking out into adjacent towns. At the peak we like to pick out our favorite spots, our high school, In-and-Out by the 15 freeway and the all too familiar traffic of the 91. Debatably harder than the ascent, is making your way down. There are two options, either go back down the way you came or go around, both equally sketchy. How we got through about a four hour hiking adventure on little sleep, without breakfast will always be a mystery but that hike will always be one of my favorite spontaneous adventures.

Photograph and content by Alex Rager