There were definitely times where I muttered to myself that I would never do this trail again. It wasn't the elevation gain, but the lower reaches were quite crowded, and the top portion was extremely brushy, for a couple miles. Not only were you plowing through brush, in some places your were hunched over, nearly crawling to get beneath the low canopy of bushes. The top of the trail also didn't quite match what I had envisioned for the area. In place of a nice pine and fir forest, it was covered in that brush which I became overly familiar with.
It was however quite beautiful in places.
Because of the fairly dynamic weather, clouds were ripping over the ridgeline, swilring up and over before evaporating on the other side. The nice oak trees in the valley below Crosley Saddle was quiet and nice, and I loved some of the oak-filled side-canyons in the Arroyo Seco Creek Canyon.
By the end of the trail the trail and I had made up, and I'm looking forward to a return trip, with brush clippers and a small saw in hand so I can help do my part and clean up what could be a pretty nice loop trail option. We need more trails in southern California, so I might as well do my part to keep the few options that we do have in the best shape possible.
Looking east towards Eagle Crage and Mt. Palomar
Looking south from Agua Tibia Mountain
This is one of the clearer stretches of the Palomar-Magee Trail (not kidding)
Crosley Saddle -- A welcome sight since the trail looks mostly clear of brush!
The lower stretches of the Wildhorse trail were quite nice
The Agua Tibia Wilderness is quite nice, I find myself wishing there were more trails dipping into the side canyons and along some of the more rugged peaks.