Wednesday, August 27, 2014

American River Trail: Completed

I sure did that thing, properly known as the Jedediah Smith Trail. From Lake Folsom to the confluence of the American with the Sacramento. Some comments:

- The area around the confluence has more skunks than I've ever seen in one place, and sadly, more feral cats. (One night last week I counted over a dozen skunks in one field, and about as many cats.) My guess is that people abandon kittens there, other people feed the cats out of a sense of compassion, and the skunks share their food.

- Despite being lucky enough to be housed and fed away from hostile wildlife, Maximus remains ungrateful, as well as unimpressed with my accomplishments.

- We fit in a raft trip just from William B. Pond to Watt Avenue one day. That was fun.

- The section between William B. Pond and Hazel Ave. is my favorite, as in the most forested, with several really quite wooded sections. Many deer, coyotes, giant pond turtles, two rattlesnakes, and a guy catching a gigantic striper as I was running by. I've also seen turkeys, but that was between Watt and Howe, and no I'm not talking about the neurosurgery team at UC Davis Med Center. Rimshot! Zing, hey-o!

- You start to see non bluff/levy hills around Hazel, but really in earnest as you're running along Lake Natomas.

Continuing my tradition of fun, stupid running projects, my grand plan is to do the following:

a) the entire Tahoe Rim Trail (TRT)

b) connect TRT to the Western States Trail start in Squaw Valley and run that thing. (This and the TRT may have to wait until next year for completion because it's unlikely I'll finish both of these prior to the first snow.)

c) run from Sacramento to Vallejo and connect to my Around the Bay route.

I've already done the coast of San Diego County so if I can still walk after I retire, I will be doing the rest of the coast and connect San Diego to Around the Bay. But I have a few decades to anticipate that. Plus, I would rather die with trails unfinished (as I certainly will anyway) than live knowing there are no new ones to explore.

Monday, August 4, 2014

Stevens Trail/North Fork American River

It's a lot of fun. Not nearly as steep as some reviews imply, it's a 1200' foot drop over 3.5 miles, 7 miles round trip. I think if you keep following the official trail along the river it's more like 4.5 each way. The views are great and the swimming hole is very, very nice, as are many along the American North Fork. I'm really starting to like the foothills.

Pictures above and below respectively from Steve Schmorleitz and Gambolin Man.