Hiking-Trails, Run!, Slacker

Sunday Summit- Cerro San Luis

December put a monkey wrench in my run/ hike a trail every other week plans.  I feel like I blinked and it was January.   I originally planned on hiking on New Year’s Day but quite frankly it was just too cold.  At least for this California girl.  I mean come on, I use a space heater every day, even in the summer.   After working in the morning and a rough, abbreviated 5 mile run on Saturday, my mom and I headed out Sunday for Cerro San Luis.IMG_8401Cerro San Luis is located in SLO and otherwise known as Madonna Mountain.  It overlooks the Madonna Inn and has a large M painted on the side representing Mission High School.  And I think it may be my new favorite view.  I just realized I took 165 pictures!IMG_8345 IMG_8353The mountain has a series of interconnecting trails, so I never actually found the M.   Guess that’s something for next time!  We wanted to add some distance so we parked at a nearby park and headed for the mountain via a trail there.   The trail wasn’t very technical and ranged from a dirt trail to a horse path.    Could have done without the horse poop everywhere but it was really cool being that close to the horses.  I had no idea you get that close to them on the trail.  It had an elevation gain of 1160 feet.  Which wasn’t that bad until the very end.  IMG_8373 IMG_8382There were quite a few times that the trail branched in different directions and we had to choose left or right.    At one point my mother chose right and holy crap, that was hard.  It was super narrow and super steep.    I was about ready to start hand over footing it when a woman came down on a bike.  Then I was jumping out of the way wondering if I was going to have to call for help.    I was afraid she was going to crash.  As she passed me she admitted that she should not have gone down that way.    She did not look comfortable or confident at all.    There were a ton of people out on the trail that day.   Bikers, walkers, runners, families and dogs.

Look- it's Bishop's Peak!
Look- it’s Bishop’s Peak!

It was a very warm day which was great but man we felt like we were working.  We finally made it to the top!  Talk about an awesome view!  We then did have to hand over foot some to get to the top of the rocks.   I could see another trail down but we weren’t sure where it went.   We could have investigated but it was way past lunch and I hadn’t eaten anything all day (stupid stomach) so we just headed back down.  We took our time going down because my mom has been fighting a knee thing off and on since we hiked Cerro AltoIMG_8409

Either stupid or daring
Either stupid or daring

This slacker forgot to charge her Garmin and it pretty much died at the top of the mountain.   Oops.  But it was 3 miles up and I think it was around 3 miles down but we went a slightly different way.   The clouds rolled in and the wind picked up as we got back to the park- perfect timing!  Oh and randomly, someone was base jumping off of one of the hills.    It wasn’t that high but umm, no thank you.

Oh hi there.
Oh hi there.

IMG_8444It was great weather and a great hike.  I look forward to going back again and exploring the other trails.  I want to find the M!   I like to call hiking my training and cross training all in one!    It was a great way to end the weekend!  The plan is to hike part of the 25K route this weekend but that also depends on how my mom’s appointment goes in regards to her knee.

How was your weekend?

chill out, Eat!, Slacker

Dirty Girl Hike & Brunch

A few of my friends have May-June birthdays, and a few of their friends do too.  So it was decided to get a group together to do a hike followed by brunch.   The hike chosen was Bishop’s Peak in SLO.  This would be followed by brunch at a fancy shmancy hotel a few towns over- in our dirty hiking clothes.  🙂   So, bright and early Sunday Morning, we all met up and jumped in the car and headed down.

Going up
Going up
into the forest we go
into the forest we go
There were people climbing the backside of the rockface
There were people climbing the backside of the rockface

I have hiked this peak before and there are 3 different ways to go up for about the first mile.  From there they all converge into a narrow, rocky dirt track and switchback the rest of the way up to the top.    The trail head we chose is located in a residential area and parking was easy.   It starts of with an easy dirt road before it starts to get harder.   There were 7 of us out there and we just kept an easy pace going up.  It was fun getting to catch up and talk as we made our way up.    By about halfway we had split into a group of 4 and then a group of 3 a couple hundred yards back.    It was fun taking it a little easier too, I tend to be a little crazy on trails, so this time I was able to enjoy the view.   And what a view it was- seriously, I took over 100 pictures!

Let me take a selfie
Let me take a selfie

IMG_4680 IMG_4708It really was great getting to talk to everyone.    Bix and I were even able to reminisce about our loathing of switch backs (Firehouse 5K).   About halfway up, at a particular tricky part, we cracked a joke that we should be singing “The Climb” by Miley Cyrus, but we couldn’t remember the words.  Which was probably a good thing.  🙂  But we made it to the top!     And I was crazy enough to climb up the last few rocks, too.  After taking the obligatory top of the mountain pictures, it was all down hill from there.

Made it to the top!
Made it to the top!
Smaller rock to conquer
Smaller rock to conquer
I'm the only crazy one going up these rocks
I’m the only crazy one going up these rocks

IMG_4744Going down, we separated into a group of 5 and and a group of 2.  D and ML and I got involved in a Supernatural discussion, more accurately our love of Dean.  🙂     More and more people were hiking their way up as well; quite a few made comments about our shirts,  apparently we thought alike when we dressed that morning.

The shirt crew
The shirt crew
Me and Bix
IMG_4788
M and ML, a little blurry but I still like it

The way the trail wraps around, you can usually hear people long before you see them.   About 2/3 down, we realized it had been a long time since we heard from the other 2 so we stopped and waited for them to catch up.  It turns out they had gotten a little lost.  Trail buddy fail!!!!   We all met up again and then we had to step it up to get to the car, we had a reservation at 11!  This is also where I couldn’t help it anymore and I ran.    I love running downhill on trails, I really do.    2 miles up and 2 miles down and we were back at the start.

going down
going down
another selfie, D is more talented than I am
another selfie, D is more talented than I am

Then it was quick change time.  Even though we had discussed going in our hiking clothes, 5 of us brought a change of clothes.  So with the use of plenty of wet wipes (so handy!), we were changing in the car by the roadside.   My apologies if I inadvertently flashed anyone.  Then we were in the car and headed to brunch.  The place was packed, we had to park on a side street.   But as one of us pointed out, we had just hiked Bishops’ Peak, we could handle a few blocks.

Celebratory toast
Celebratory toast
So very yummy
So very yummy

Brunch was awesome.  The company was amazing and the food was great.  The service could have used some help and when the heck did brunch get so expensive?  Then again, I don’t think I have been to brunch since the last century, so that could be part of it.   We all ate too much and enjoyed our champagne and mimosas.   I don’t really drink, so I’m usually the DD, but this time it was nice that someone else was.   It’s still not my thing but it was fun.   Overall, it was an awesome day.IMG_4776

I did have my Garmin with me on the hike.  I didn’t care about pace but I had wanted the elevation profile.    Well, this blonde had some problems.  #1 was auto pause.  I do not like that feature, I think that it was what tripped me up with my time at the SLO Marathon.  During the hike, it paused when we were going through a cattle fence and never started up again.  It took me almost 1/2 a mile to notice.   Urgh.   Bix had the great idea that I should just start it over at the top, so at least it would be accurate on the way down, and then I could double it.   So I did that, but we stopped about a 1/3 of the way down so I paused it.  Why? I don’t know but I forgot to restart it and didn’t figure it out until it buzzed with the power save warning.   Ugh!!!   So yeah, that didn’t work, but we went from around 350 to almost 1500 and back.

But like I said it was an awesome day and I can’t wait to do it again!

How was your weekend?