Ventura eve hike is the place to be
By Lisa Snider
When I decided to go on the Ventura Urban Hike on a Wednesday evening, I had no idea what a loyal following this weekly trek has developed over the last twelve years.
Hikers are shown on the way to Grant Park, the Wednesday evening outing lead by Kurt Pressler, which goes in a circle fromthe San Buenaventura Mission up to the park, to the pier and back. (Photo by Kurt Pressler)
Long time Sierra Club member Kurt Preissler has been leading the Ventura Urban Hike every Wednesday evening for two years. Preissler, a 47-year-old photographer who owns a media services company in Ventura, leads the group, which sometimes hovers over 100; rain, shine or dark of night (most bring flashlights in winter), even on holidays, when the event still manages to bring out some 25 people or more.
This time of year, the Ventura Urban Hike is particularly popular due to the high summer temperatures on the inland trails. “A lot of people don’t really know how to hike in the heat,” said Preissler, encouraging locals to come out on this cool evening hike.
Near the cross, a sign tells of recent mountain lion sightings, but Preissler said that shouldn’t deter folks from joining them. “The numbers that we are and the noise that we make, I really don’t think a mountain lion is going to approach us,” adding the familiar adage that there is safety in numbers.
“The best way to be safe is to hike with us,” said Preissler, also inviting the Santa Barbara, Arguello and Conejo groups to join in the fun, too, which oftentimes ends with snacks and beverages at Busy Bee Diner on Main a block up from the mission. For more information on the Ventura Urban Hike go to: www.LosPadres.SierraClub.org/Sespe
As published in the Sierra Club's Condor Call August/September 2008.