Posts Tagged ‘Hiking’

Wash and rinse

September 1, 2020

Arroyo, with a side of agua fria, coming up.

I had just turned into the cul-de-sac when it started raining.

My timing couldn’t have been better. I had left El Rancho Pendejo 90 minutes earlier for a brisk morning march along various foothills trails, because the weather wizards were predicting thundershowers. And when I turned around, up by Embudo Dam, I saw that they did not lie.

The Sandman cometh.

So I cranked up the pace a bit as the skies darkened, and then darkened some more. The wind sprang up, as it will, out of the north. Onward.

Finally, just past Candelaria on Trail 365, I broke into a run. Or what I call a run, anyway. A runner might disagree, or perhaps just laugh out loud.

And then, boom, just as I got home, the skies opened up and pissed rain … for a solid minute. Maybe two.

Oh, well. In the desert, two minutes of rain is better than none.

My dogs are barking

August 5, 2020

Ordinarily if I’m enjoying this view it’s from the saddle of a bike,
not via shank’s mare.

Cycling has taken a back seat — actually, a garage hook — to hiking.

I don’t know why. Yet here I am, having hiked 20 miles in the past few days.

It seemed like a good idea at the time. Until this afternoon, when the legs and feet feel a tad abused for some reason, as though they had been et by a coyote and shit off a cliff.

The last couple days I’ve been hiking trails that I used to ride before The Bug came to town. The change in perspective is interesting. I’ve spotted social trails that I never noticed from the saddle, plus a few old fencelines that make me glad I didn’t major in Stringing Fence Up Steep Slopes.

Exploring an unfamiliar trail is a little easier because I don’t have to put a foot down and mumble, “Oh, shit, can’t ride that.”

Also, bits I’ve historically been unable to ride? I look at them on foot and think, “Why can’t I ride that?”

Dodging the clueless is likewise simpler. Almost nobody seems grounded in trail etiquette these days, or even schooled in the concept of a shared public space, so I just step aside and wave the dummies on.

What the hell? The world is full of dummies, and worse than dummies, too. You can’t clout them all with your hiking stick. Or you shouldn’t, anyway. You might break your stick.

Chalk up another walk

May 5, 2020

Flowers and honeybees and ladybugs, o my.

Mondays used to be running days. No más, no más, as Roberto Duran once said.

These days, I walk. It may be slow, but at least it takes a lot of time.

The view to the east.

Yesterday I marched south along the Linear Trail to Piedra Lisa Park and the Menaul trailhead, then came home via Foothills Trails 401 and 365. Three and a half miles in a little over an hour, with stops for snaps.

Before getting onto the trail proper I noticed the chalk artists had been keeping busy, shifting from sidewalks to walls. More power to their tiny arms.

Once on the trails north of Menaul, it became apparent that I was very much not alone. Happily, you can see company coming a long ways off out there, so I changed course as necessary to maintain the proper socialist distancing. Arroyos are good. Mostly I’m the only guy who seems to like walking the arroyos.

We’re still limited to outings “necessary for health, safety, and welfare,” and I consider that mine are. We’re talking an hour to 90 minutes tops. It’s a small price for society to pay to keep me off the roof and the Marlin .357 lever-action in its case.

Plus I am in The Media™. So there, pffffbbblllffffhh.

Also, if I feel a sneeze coming on while I’m out there prowling the arroyos — it is allergy season — I dig a cathole and bury it. No medals, please; you know what a selfless, modest Man of the People® I am.

On my uppers

August 30, 2017

Duke City as seen from the Sandia foothills.

I piddled away a bunch of daylight early yesterday doing bits of this and that, and come 10 a.m. I was in the mood for the great outdoors but not quite sure how to approach it.

Finally I loaded a Gregory day pack, pulled on my old Vasque Clarion boots and went for a short hike in the Sandia foothills. I have some marching to do next month, at Interbike, and it never hurts to refresh the old muscle memory, especially old muscles and old memory.

Shoes for industry.

Wise choice, as it turns out. On the way home my decrepit hiking boots performed what Herself, a former outdoor-equipment retailer, called “a de-lam’.” Both soles basically crumbled and peeled away at the heels.

“Sonofabitch,” I observed. “I’ve only had these boots since the elves made them for that down-on-his-luck cobbler, and what a steal they were, too. Or was it Elvis? Anyway, curses, etc.”

So home I flapped, like a nattily dressed hobo. And now I get to buy some new boots. I feel happier than Carrie Bradshaw with a Manolo Blahnik catalog.