Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Hiking Cougar Mountain

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Hiking Cougar Mountain
I am feeling SO much better, lately, that I told Roy that this weekend I wanted to do something, anything, that would be:
a) Active
b) Get me out of the house

I figured I've had enough of walking (I've been walking every day since I got out of the hospital). I can't run, climb mountains, bike, or swim yet but I can hike! So we drove up to Cougar Mountain and went on a six mile hike up to the Anti-Aircraft field, where (apparently) there were AA turrets during WWII. I'm sure they weren't ever really USED, but it's up on top of the mountain (it's a small mountain).

We started at the Redtown Trailhead. I like the other trailheads better, but there is more parking up there. It's up for about 3/4 of a mile to start. This was actually where I did my first trail run, and I remember hating it because it was up for so long and it's "okay pretty" but not "wow pretty" in that area. We had grabbed a map at the trailhead and chose our route. First we'd go to the cave holes and see how we were feeling from there. If I was feeling good, we'd keep going.

Obviously I was feeling good, so we kept going. As we got higher it got colder, but I'd dressed in plenty of layers (although somehow I brought two left handed gloves, so I had one on backwards), so I was nice a nd warm. The foliage was just beautiful. In the lower levels it was very green and damp. The sun was breaking through in parts, illuminating the drops on the greenery. That was just what I wanted to see...something other than the inside of my livingroom and the television.

We had considered going towards the snow, but I didn't want to go somewhere where I might slip. Plus I wanted GREEN, not just white. White and green would be even better.

As we moved further up the mountain we'd see smatterings of snow left over from last week's snow. (We didn't get any, but they did.) It was so pretty covering the deep green of the moss, dusted all over the trees. We also ascended into the clouds, so there was a misty ethereal feel to the hike.

There were a lot of other people on the mountain today, but most of the time we were completely alone. We did greet a lot of folks and a lot of dogs. Everyone was friendly and, save three teenage boys, every single person bid us a good morning or hello (and we, them...of course).

Down was a lot more challenging than up because of how slick it was. VERY wet, lots of boggy areas. But I loved every single minute of it. I even got to run some! This is the first running I've done in five weeks! Five weeks ago I ran a marathon, and since then all I've done is walk.

When we finished I was happier than I've been in over a month, but tired. Not "I shouldn't have done that" tired, but just "Wow, that was a fun challenge" tired. In fact, of the two of us, I was the one in the least amount of pain. Poor Roy had some knee pain on the way down. But he did it!

We finished off our day with a well earned meal at Spaghetti Factory. It was just a great day...a "normal" day. I am SO happy to be well on the way to mending...no, mendED!

No comments: