Mar 22, 2006

Let's go hiking!

To my delight, the proposed seven-mile hike at Purisima Open Space Preserve turned out to be five-mile semi-moderate stroll through gorgeous and lush redwood forest, due to closure of the Soda Gulch portion of the loop. Recent rains caused many portions of the trail to become squishy and muddy, which only added to the fun.

Speaking of fun, Am joined us on her first hike with the group and held her own with the faster hikers. She definitely gets the award for “hiker with the best trail snacks” – those pb&j sandwiches were delicious!

Actually, Joice wins the joint award for the bag of fresh strawberries. Yum.

Anyway, back to the hike!

Up until now, our humble little hiking club hadn't had any run-ins with animals while on the trail. On that day, banana slugs greeted us at every turn, along with a lone salamander, whom we named “Purisma Sally.” Some discussion was had regarding the proper etiquette when pouring water on a salamander. The main point of contention - if I remember correctly - had to do with P.H. levels in water vs. a salamander's skin.

I kept walking.

For those of us who felt up to an additional 3 miles, an out-and-back hike to Bald Knob noted a 15-degree differential from the cool, damp canyon, which gives you an idea of what a elevation distance of 1800 feet really feels like.

As I continue to go on these hikes, I find that my edge is about five miles. As my recap from the Mt. Tam hike shows, anything longer than five miles, and I begin to curse the ground I’m walking on. Every step forward is a mini struggle to contend with.

I suppose this means I need to continue to push myself.

Until then, I'll remain content in the fact that although I hadn't hiked since Mt. Tam, I managed to pull through this one quite nicely. My chest did not feel like it was going to explode this time. Progress?

I wholeheartedly recommend Purisima as a hike we'll need to revisit sometime soon. The lush canyon, tall redwoods, and creekbed reminded me of the sensory overload I suffered at Mt. Tam from taking in all of my gorgeous surroundings. It was truly beautiful. I'd be curious to do that same loop during the summer.

Farewell for now, Purisima - we'll be back. Until then, Hikemeister Doug provides us with yet another wonderful slide show from our hike. Enjoy!

(Photo credit: Doug)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

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