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“We didn’t look like this 40 years ago,” Pete Forchini, one of the hiking group’s members, assured me as he chuckled to himself. I smiled as we turned to continue down the trail.
It was still a little hard to believe that a few of the members of this weekly hiking group had been hiking together since the early sixties. That’s a long time. And here they were, laughing and loving each other’s company as we explored the coastal bluffs of POST-protected Pillar Point.
Many of the members of this group met in the early 1960s as volunteers for the Sierra Club’s Inspiring Connections Outdoors program, which was aimed at getting inner-city youth outside and in wild places. They stayed friends over the years and, in retirement, started a weekly hiking group that meets faithfully every Monday.
I was lucky enough to get an invitation a few weeks back to join the group on their weekly hike and jumped at the opportunity. I wanted to hear their stories and ask them what’s kept them coming to open spaces all these years and what changes they’ve seen on the land.
Here’s what a few of them had to say:
Peninsula Open Space Trust (POST) protects open space on the Peninsula and in the South Bay for the benefit of all. Since its founding in 1977, POST has been responsible for saving more than 76,000 acres as permanently protected land in San Mateo, Santa Clara and Santa Cruz counties.