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Created 27-Apr-10
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The Power of Yelp

Time and time again, I find myself surprised and now I find myself hooked. Call it a innate insecurity of the unknown coupled with the scientist within, I can't escape this desire to know. I want answers and I want them NOW.

Whenever I hear of a new restaurant or a new place to check out, I instinctively hop onto Yelp. I'm a bit late on the bandwagon since I've only heard about their existence about two years ago. As they proudly assert, real reviews by real people. The moment you read that, an immediate bond is forged between you and the reviewers. These are not overpaid critics whose standards have been blown absurdly high and whose perspectives have narrowed over the course of their career. These are real people, like you and I, from all walks of life that are just intrigued as you are and want to embrace the internal explorer.

I never knew about Echo Mountain and it was only after seeing a couple of friends venture up this trail did I decide to do a bit of research. And when I say research, I mean Yelp (and a little bit of Googling). To my astonishment, Echo mountain: 4.5 stars, 40+ reviews. What could possibly be this place that everyone has heard of but me?

I rounded up my usual suspects and we set out the explore. With the power of Yelp, there were very few surprises. 2.5 miles up and 2.5 miles down. Roughly 3 hours roundtrip. Piece of cake, I got this in the bag. *Get out of the car and approach the mountain* "OMG.. uhh... we're going to have to climb up THAT?" It goes to show that even though Yelp and Google can give you a fairly good impression of the venue you're going to explore, your experience will always be unique. I didn't expect mid-mountain that I would be outpaced by a Asian senior citizen chugging along with his hiking poles, wearing a windbreaker in 80' weather and lugging a loaded backpack, all the while I was sidelined, gasping for air. How's that for feeling 24 and "young"?

Regardless, ENJOY!

Location: Echo Mountain, Pasadena
EXIF Data: D700, 50 1.4D, D90, Sigma 10-20
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