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!

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Can I boast about something? I have to admit, I feel pretty proud of myself- hopefully I'm not struck down by some higher power for my hubris. It might not sound like much, compared to the accomplishments of marathoners and iron-person competitors. But for someone to whom feats of physical endurance have never come naturally, I feel that hiking 19.6 miles in 9.5 hours is pretty good.

I went on Sunday, to the Point Reyes National Seashore, and when I started I was thinking the route I had picked out was maybe, 16 or 17 miles, which is still further than I've hiked before. I quickly figured out that it would be longer than I had planned, but I had plenty of food, and, well, almost plenty of water, and I figured I'd just go ahead as planned anyway.

I started on the Five Brooks trailhead on Rte 1 and hiked the Stewart Trail up and over the ridge to the Wildcat Camp on the coast. That was the first 6.7 miles. I then proceeded south along the Ocean Lake Loop Trail (which features a great view point of the coast) to the Coast Trail, past Alamere Falls (at which point I took a .8 mile side trip to see the actual falls. There were naked guys there.) and Bass Lake to the junction with the Lake Ranch Trail, which was the previous northernmost point to which I had hiked the Coast Trail. Hiked back along the Coast Trail, then joined up with the Old Out Trail at 13.2 miles (including the side trip), took that back up to the Alamea Trail, which joined up with the Ridge Trail, merging with the Bolema Trail to the Olema Valley Trail and then back to the trailhead.

And then the aftermath. I was feeling very peppy for the first 13-14 miles or so, but the last six miles took their toll. When I got home at 7pm I called up my dad for Father's Day, showered, and then hopped straight into bed. I woke up with some strange aches and pains. I was sensible enough to stretch out all the obvious muscle groups during and after the hike, so my legs were ok. My butt was sore, which wasn't entirely surprising. But my ribs? My neck? And, of course, it turns out that a single application of sunblock is not near enough to get you through 9.5 sweaty hours. I guess I could have told you that beforehand if I'd thunk it through, but I'm a bit lobstery now.

I think the best thing I figured out was that taking a break, stretching, and then lying down with your feet elevated makes a big difference in staving off tiredness. Of course I'd read this before but never really tried it out. It was kind of nice.


Blogger AphotoAday said...

Whew... I got tuckered out just reading that! Now I need to take a break, stretch, and put my feet up... Yup, I think that will help...
You are a real hiking "trouper" -- at my age (58) I'd never tackle anything that difficult... Even though I became a vegetarian and stopped drinking two years ago, a 10 mile, fairly level hike, like Bear Valley to the Coast is enough to totally exhaust me...
Had to laugh when you said that there were "naked guys" at Alamere Falls -- that's not much of an incentive for me, but had you reported "naked ladies" I'm sure I would be a bit more inspired to get there -- although I think I'd take an easier route like the Palo Marin Trail...
But, whew... That was quite a hike! Congratulations...
Don and Kitty

10:06 AM  
Blogger Kelly said...

Well, Don, there were the peeing ladies in one of my previous posts. They were partially naked... kind of, sort of.

Glad the stretching and putting your feet up works for you, too. :-) -Kelly

4:31 PM  

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