November 5, 2014 § Leave a comment
Someone got a new backpack this weekend.
Though you can’t tell from the picture, she’s a huge fan.
To test it out, we headed out to Griffith Park Sunday morning.
Last week I was listening to an interview with Josh Spector who came in 18th at Badwater this year. He lives in north Hollywood and was talking about all of the great hill/trail running in LA. Now I see what he’s talking about. Miles and miles of trails and roads with only foot traffic.
It is gorgeous. Crowded on a beautiful Sunday morning, but gorgeous. And once you get off the main trail onto one of the many smaller trails it’s a lot less crowded. When (if) I ever train for a marathon again, that is where I am heading (though with a partner…just saw this…)
Time to get exploring.
September 13, 2012 § 2 Comments
Location: Powell County (about 50 miles east of Lexington)
Distance: Choose your own adventure (our choice was ~5.5 miles round trip)
Entry Fee: $0
Last Sunday Paul got really amped to go for a hike. So we got up nice and early, dropped Spike off at daycare (Marsha), and headed east into Powell County. Which is dry. So no post-hike beer.
You may remember our last real hike in Kentucky, which pretty much turned me off to hiking here forever. I am a fan of hiking (see: origin of this blog), but round here it takes some serious convincing that we are going to a heavily populated area with absolutely no hunting within a 100 mile radius for me to go. Turns out Natural Bridge is like the HOTTEST tourist attraction in Kentucky outside of Derby, which was enough to convince me we wouldn’t be confused for deer.
After a post-drive bathroom break and some superior mullet spotting at the Hemlock Lodge, we headed out on the Original trailhead, then veered off onto the Hoods Branch Trail (the trip from the lodge up to the bridge ranges anywhere from .75 miles-4 miles.) Our mishmash route was about 3 miles to the top.
This site is adjacent to the Red River Gorge, so the rocks started getting pretty cool pretty quick.
I can’t really speak to this personally, but apparently rocks like this are a rock climber’s dream.
…so of course Paul started up with this.
the whole. hike. up.
We eventually “climbed” our way up to the bridge…
…where the final stretch to get up to the bridge must prevent about 85% of the state’s population from actually experiencing the view from the top.
It is a seriously tight squeeze, I felt a little claustrophobic going through. I am genuinely curious if anyone’s ever gotten stuck before.
We got to the top and it was…
…completely void of any barriers to keep people from falling off.
This made me nervous.
After that it was back on the trail…
…with a quick stop at the chair lift station to buy some more water from the two teenage kids in their John Deer hats sitting there drinking Ale 8 and listening to country music.
Best job ever.
Then it was down, down, down.
The “stairs” really were that steep.
And…back to the car! Then, of course, a stop by Miguel’s, the climber hangout, for full pizza with potatoes, mushrooms, and kielbasa.
Holy crap, delicious.
Fun, short hike, nice views, worth the trip to see one of the Seven Wonders of the Commonwealth.
November 19, 2011 § 2 Comments
About a year an a half ago one of our very best friends from college moved with her husband, who is a doctor, out to the middle of the Navajo Nation in Arizona so he could work at the local hospital. Last Thursday three of us met up in Albequerque and made the four hour drive out to Chinle (pronounced chin-lee) to visit the two of them along with their two year old daughter and brand new baby, who was born in September.
Our hosts were gracious enough to let us stay for three whole days (God knows why). Our weekend consisted of:
October 3, 2011 § 3 Comments
…continued from Part A.
Before we continue, did you know that September 17 is Constitution Day?
Chrissy did. And did you know that Delaware was the first state to ratify the Constitution? Now you do.
From the Inner Sunset we headed into Cole Valley for some uphill. Way, way uphill. Running sounded like a good idea, so that’s what we did.
It was easy. And by easy I mean painful. Ferg also figured out that skipping uphill is basically impossible. From here, it was time for steps…which we also ran up.
These took us to…
Stop #5: Michelle and Dave’s, Mount Sutro.
Dave and Michelle (and Cooper, their dog) had an amazing view and a RIDICULOUS amount of delicious food at their house. It was fantastic. We arrived sweaty and out of breath, and ended up hanging out there longer than the allotted 30 minutes due to some coordination problems with two other hikers who wanted to meet up (after about an hour we realized that they were waiting for us at Michelle and Dave’s old house across town. Whoops.) We decided to meet up with them at the next stop.
Fully fueled on pulled pork, mac and cheese, and brownies, we finally hit the road again. This next stretch would be one of the longer ones of the day. Road sodas in hand, we left Mount Sutro and headed down into…a forest.
Yes, really. This little jungle is nestled right behind Michelle and Dave’s, and is home to the only mountain biking trail inside the city (we actually had to let a few bikers pass by.) We emerged from the forest for yet another hill…
…and a few more stairs…
…to the top of Tank Hill, for a pretty fantastic cityscape.
(Note: Tank Hill was actually a hill for a water tank, not an army tank.)
At this point we were pretty far behind schedule, so we had to get our move on. After a handstand attempt at the spot where the water tank used to be…
…we headed downhill (finally) toward Upper Market and passed a minibus that, like Chrissy, understood the importance of Constitution Day.
We successfully completed our first crossing of Market (the main drag you can see in the picture above from the top of Tank Hill)…
…and managed to find a ledge to set the camera on autoshoot and posed for a full group shot. From here, it was down through Noe Valley to…
Stop #6: Summer and Ryan’s, The Mission
This stop resulted in 2 more hikers, 2 dogs, and a Katy Perry dance party. But 30 minutes later we were on our way again, through the Mission to…
W-K MARKET! The same stop we made last year.
Cutty bang time. This year tasted a lot better, for some reason.* We continued through the Mission without encountering A SINGLE bacon wrapped hot dog cart (a miracle)…
…successfully completed our first freeway crossing…
…and hiked up to the top of Potrero Hill to…
Stop #7: Ferg’s, Potrero Hill
Quick stop, we met up with 3 new hikers (and acquired another dog) and headed downhill (thank God)…
…to freeway crossing #2. Completed our second freeway crossing successfully, with some people showcasing their parkour skills down into SOMA. Counting strollers was long gone, but a few hikers were so happy to be on flat ground again that they just kept on skipping.
As dusk fell, we headed into downtown, crossed Market Street for a second time, passed City Hall…
…and marched straight into the Tenderloin to our old favorite hang out, Harrington’s Pub: where people smoke inside and dogs are welcome (which worked out great for us). We asked a lady in the bar to take a group shot.
Apparently she’d been hanging out at the bar for a while. But to be honest, it was probably better than any of us could do at that point. We finished up our drinks and hit the road again, where we saw…another double decker red bus. Why these things run through the Tenderloin I will never understand. This meant only one thing:
Time for The Outsider, another Tenderloin gem. From here we put on our blinders and made our way up the final hill to our FINAL STOP!
Stop #8: Sherwin & Peterson’s, the Tendernob
Victory. Pizza and football for everyone.
Finishing time: 8:30pm
Lessons Learned: Carl is the fastest skipper in the group; they won’t let you in to a marijuana store “just to go pee”
Flora and Fauna: Max, Lani, Cooper, and Huey.
*UPDATE: The Cutty Bang was on ice this year. General consensus is that’s why it was so much better.
October 2, 2011 § 4 Comments
Some fortunate people with calves like this had an advantage:
Most of us did not. But I’m getting ahead of myself.
Location: San Francisco
Distance: 14.04 m
Entry Fee: A good attitude, willingness to walk up hills
Apartment Hike #2 was a massive success…no thanks to me. A huge HUGE thank you goes out to Molly, Peterson, and Ferg for making this happen. And, of course, all of the hosts. Without you, there would be no Urban Apartment Hiking.
- 30 minutes at each house
- Bacon Wrapped Hot Dog Carts–duh
- Red Double Decker Tour Buses = chug a beer at the nearest bar. 5 minutes max.
- Bay Quackers Duck Bus = shot of the warmest garbage tequila on the dusty bottom shelf from the nearest bar
- Every time you see a stroller, you get to tell someone to skip. That person has to skip until the next stroller is spotted, and the skipping gets passed along to someone else.
AND WE WERE OFF!
Stop #1: T. Dude and Eden’s, The Richmond. Newly engaged. Champagne for everyone.
Eden couldn’t join, but was gracious enough to host. Their new apartment is awesome. We left the first stop with almost 20 people in tow…21 if you count the one in utero (Summer is a TROOPER).
Pat and Foster skipped through the park…
…and right into our first Red Double Decker bus.
Which landed us in Yancy’s at 10:45am. Sherwin (attempted to) skip through the door.
Stops #2 (Telleen, where we were provided with delicious fresh fruit), #3 (Molly, who made some fantastic cookies), and #4 (the Hesslers, who provided a wide range of delicacies) were all within 4 blocks of each other in the Inner Sunset. And that’s exactly how it went: boom boom boom.
Then we hit the road again…
…and walked the 3 blocks down to the Blackthorn Tavern for the second bus stop. Lara skipped.
(Gold star to anyone who can identify the origin of the yellow sunglasses.)
At this point we were halfway through our stops but had only been hiking for about 2 hours. And it had all been flat. We were fully fueled and ready to attack the upcoming hills. Things were about to get a lot gnarlier…especially for skipping.
September 20, 2011 § 1 Comment