Vlog #9 – Two Summits

I was hoping for a thunderstorm and some rain. I didn’t time that right, but I did have an awesome run through a beautiful forest. I reached the highest peak in Ventura Country, and I got an extra surprise peak out of the deal! Check it out.

5-31 I’m Done! (Bowden Ranch Climb)

Today I had to take my car for servicing in San Luis Obispo, so I decided to fill my wait time with a two hour run. I headed out toward the high school looking for a steep trail that I briefly explored during a rain run.

I had trouble finding it, but I did get there. And it was steep. But what a way to end my 31-day challenge than to climb a steep trail to the top of a peak overlooking SLO. At the top, it was another freaking wind storm. Am I cursed to live in these things? The winds were 20-30 mph, and it was cold, of course. But it is probably the last wind storm I will need to endure for a while.

Other than the wind, it was beautiful up there. Everything is green and there were lots of wildflowers. I wanted to make sure I hit all the high points of the ridge, so I made sure to climb all of them. It was good.

But the downhill was a bit dangerous. It was steep (as I mentioned) and technical. I rolled my ankle a couple of times without any injury or pain, and I almost tripped once that would have caused me to roll down the hill on face, so I took it easy after that. I’m getting to old for this crap. I made it to the end of the trail without any injuries at all. Only with luck. Success.

So it was a great way to end the month-long challenge. Today was the longest run of the month, and it was the only summit climbed during the month. Why not finish the pinnacle of a one-month challenge with an actual pinnacle? Seemed fitting.

I’ve completed the goal of five miles a day for 31 days straight. Technically, I need to do 20,000 steps every day for 31 days, and I still have 5000 more to go, but that is as good as done. I’m pretty happy with this experiment/experience. It was interesting, fun, and challenging. Done!

Summit in the Storm

It was quite windy and a steady rain during the entire run. There are many sections in Coon Creek Canyon that had very little wind, but when climbing to Oats Peak and at the top of the peak, the wind was howling. By the time I made it there, I was saturated, so it became quite cold. The river was running high in Coon Creek Canyon. One bridge almost had water cresting the bridge. There was less than one inch left. The trail was flooded too, forcing me to get very wet early on. There were a couple of other people out there. One person of note was climbing up to the top of Coon Creek with an umbrella. It looked silly and seemed useless since the rain was blowing practically horizontally, but I don’t fault anyone for doing what they need to do to get out there on a day like today. And he did make it to the top of the peak.

The run down from Oats Peak was windy almost the entire time. The clouds were swirling along the ridgeline. The rain also started falling harder around that point. There were times when I was slapped in the face with what felt like a rock. I think it was the occasional piece of hail. That made me keep my head down with my hat on while also trying not to lose my hat. The wind was blowing so hard in some places that it was hard to breathe. Although I wanted to get in a half marathon, I was unable to unlock my phone in the rain to see how far I had run. When I got to the car, I was able to check, but I was done. Done. Done.

But all of this made it feel like an adventure. It was a great run. I’ll remember this one.

Mt. Abel to Mt. Pinos

This is the first time I have taken this trail, and it was amazing. There was a decent amount of climbing to tackle, and I’m guessing almost all of it was between 6000 and 8800 feet above sea level. That made for a challenging traverse, especially given my current fitness level. But it was very satisfying. The weather was great. As a small storm was moving in, it felt very much like fall today. I was in a heavy mist most of the time, and there was a cold wind in certain sections, specifically on the Pinos summit. It was the best run/hike that I have had in a while.

Black Hill and Quarry Trail

It was nice and cool when I started today. I felt slow, but not too bad. The view from the top of Black Hill was great. I could see Morro Rock under the fog with just the top peaking out. When I crossed back to the Quarry Trail, it started to warm up. Finished just in time. 

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