It occurred to me as one of my poles started collapsing that I need to tighten them every time I set out. Thankfully that happened when I was on a service road area and not on a high, steep trail. It took a while to get the straps adjusted, but once I did, the poles were so amazing to use. I previously said that I didn't like advancing the poles with every step, but I take that back now that straps allow a looser grip. One of the advantages of using poles is that you can really feel them propel you forward. The second and third videos I watch mentioned that, but I had my doubts. Those doubts are completely gone now. It almost feels like a turbo mode. I also feel a huge difference in my posture. I can tell I'm standing up much straighter when I use them, which feels great. Especially toward the end of a hike when it's normally so hard to keep going.
Anyhow, it was a pretty morning.
And I almost immediately found this awesome gear on the side of the road! I'll probably use it for an air plant display.
I decided to hike the entire length of the gulch via the Eastern side, and took a break partway through to investigate the recently-expanded mountain biking area. I was mostly curious if the trails I could see leading off from it connect to bring riders back up via a loop or if they both trail off. What I ended up discovering was an alternate way up from the level below that may come in handy sometime. There might be a second one, but the trail dropped several feet and I didn't feel like sitting and lowering myself down.
They've marked the direction to follow on their course, it'll be interesting to see how long that lasts.
I could swear I smelled weed and it honestly wouldn't shock me if someone has planted a little bit here, disguised among all of this. Weed is legal here, but you still have to be 21 to buy it.
Such nice surroundings for a mountain biking stunt course.
It's headband season again, and also time to switch to the lightweight hoodie. It's a shame, because the one I'm wearing in this photo is my only pullover-style one, and therefor the only one with a kangaroo-style center pocket. I prefer to keep my phone there since it's more secure, but it also gets a bit sweaty.
6.08 miles in 2:42, 13,064 steps, 323ft gain
I know the total time of this walk seems pretty long since I said I was going faster using the poles, but I took quite a bit of time exploring. After making my way up to the ballfields, I followed the nicer trails nearby, then the road, as far North as I could go. After making my way back down to the center, I decided to continue with my theme of going to more difficult areas with the help of the poles. I chose to climb up to the Western side via the Southernmost trail on that side, which I call Scary Campers. That name comes from the last time I was there, when it was still pretty dark and a dog started barking from somewhere deep in the shadows. I assumed some people were camping there, though I never saw them or even the dog.
That trail's really scary, even with the poles. Very narrow and precarious, and old bridges that look like they'll collapse at any moment. And there's a lot of space between the boards on the bridges, so it's hard to place the poles without them going right through. There's also a ton of garbage down there. Old tires, especially. My curiosity is gone and I don't need to go back on that trail again unless I hear about improvements and a cleanup.
Looks like someone's trying to do a little cleaning. This at the top of the trail. Good for them, but it's really a drop in the bucket and almost pointless.
Back at the car, I liked this strange little cloud formation.
I decided to take the Boeing freeway home as it's pretty fast. I don't like it on weekdays because of the traffic, but Sunday morning is fine. The Boeing plant, which is the largest building in the world by volume, is the one you see from :09 to 0:13
We had a couple of hours before time to leave for the Dina Martina show, so I made us lox and bagels, one of my favorite meals. I think I'm done trying to buy red onions, they always seem to have gone bad by the time I cut them open, no matter how soon it is. And if you've never tasted a red onion that's gone bad, you're lucky. White and yellow will have to do. Or maybe I'll just start buying red onions and pickling them immediately.
I might buy myself a nicer pair of walking poles soon. Mine absorb shock, but feel like they could absorb a little more. They're also louder than I'd like them to be, and have rubber tips instead of the fancier carbide tips. Though I might be able to swap those out. But I should hold off a bit. I like walking with them so far but want to make sure I keep up with it.