Over 500 miles of trails

Someone said that there are over 500 miles of trails in Marin County. I'm going to hike all of them. Want to hear more? Read on...

Location: Woodacre, California, United States

Well, I hike, obviously. I read, without retaining, lots of stuff but mostly classic and contemporary fiction, history, and science. I look at birds and plants. I play my guitar far less than I ought, and watch movies far more. I like to ask people questions, but only if they ask me questions in return. I aspire to honorable behavior and am mostly successful. I'm on the cusp of a career change, with bird research in my past/present and academic librarianship in my future. Occasionally I bust out and cook six course gourmet meals for my friends; for some reason it's always six and never seven or five. Enough about me. What about you? Stranger or friend, drop me a line!

Monday, November 28, 2005

Sunday, November 27, we went on another hike, this time just Victor and I because according to my hiking book dogs were prohibited on this trail, though I think they were actually allowed on leash. The hike was 9.2 miles, nearly to the top of the East Peak of Mt. Tamalpais. We started at Lake Lagunitas ($7 fee to get in! Can you imagine?), hiked up the Eldridge Grade out to Ridgecrest Drive, which is the auto route to the summit. We had the option of walking next to the road the rest of the way to the summit, a paltry .2 miles or so, but were repulsed by the amount of auto traffic so decided to leave that for another day. We took the Middle Peak Fire Road across to (surprise) the middle peak of Mt. Tam, then Lakeville Trail to Collier Springs Trail (a narrow and steep descent) to the Lower Northside Trail to Lagunitas Fire Road back down to the lake.

The best part was the hike up Eldridge Grade. It was switchbacked, thus the ascent was never insanely steep, and there were great views of the Bay all the way up the hill. Towards the top you could see the Richmond, Bay, and Golden Gate Bridges simultaneously (admittedly you could only see the very top of one of the towers of the Golden Gate. But still...) It was necessary to dodge the occasional mountain biker hurtling downhill, but the bike traffic was surprisingly light for a weekend.

Victor really got me. I have to admit I got a little verklempt. It was while we were hiking down the Collier Springs trail. He said, "Thank you for starting this project, Kelly." And I said, "You're welcome. Why?" And he said, "Because this is what I always loved to do, and I've gotten away from it in the last few years, and now I'm remembering all the things I loved about just being out in the woods." Of course, he's the one that got me going on this project in the first place. He's a good one, that Victor is. And there's my sappy, lovey-dovey anecdote to counterbalance the conflict in my previous post.


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