The "sport" of backpacking is not for everyone, but in the time of COVID, where vacations and trips are limited depending on one's comfort level traveling farther than their hometown, it is a great way to connect to what, on most days/weeks/months, we might take for granted.
The quiet solitude of being in the wilderness with a pack on your back, life consolidated to what you can carry and the day's focus purely on going from one tent site to the next, is an experience of mindfulness. The breathtaking beauty, not immediately accessible to anyone without effort, is not something one takes for granted. To climb a 8,000 ft incline, get to its peak, gaze to the other side, it feels like a doorway into "the road less traveled".
Studies have even shown, getting outside away from traffic noises and the hustle and bustle of everyday living, helps emotional balance, and enhances ones immune system. And wilderness wondering is well suited to these days of living "6 feet apart".
To help plan any type of hike or backpacking trip, my favorite go to app for years has been AllTrails. It sorts the trails by distance, skill level (beginner, moderate, advanced), and whether a trail is well traveled or less traveled. There are often reviews left that help with info on condition of trails and any issues that one needs to be aware of. An added feature is you can map your own hike, so you can plot together a few hikes to create a longer adventure.
One of the best parts of living in California, is we have access to all sorts of outdoor adventures year round. So get on those hiking boots, stock up your pack for a day adventure or longer, and go lose yourself in the wilderness!