Brain to body, engage legs…engage legs…body to brain we have a leg malfunction!
This sums up last weekends run! I was scheduled for a 10 miles to and around Sandstone Peak with the TRC and had been looking forward to it all week. It was a new location for me and is the highest peak in the Santa Monica at 3,111’. My plan was to get there early and add on a few extra miles to get closer to fifteen for the day, making up for a less than stellar week, you know work, life etc.
After a long and twisty drive from Pacific Coast Highway I found the start point at Circle X Ranch, I was unsure where to park and wandered around aimlessly for a while settling on “as close to the road as possible”. From here it was a stretch in the back of the car and I was off. I found a trail called the Grotto Trail and tentatively stepped off as the sun rose. I followed the path for a little over a mile finding myself at a dry river bed, I decided that I wouldn’t get to the end before needing to be back at the start point in time to meet the main group but not until I managed to get some photos of a “cloud lake” that was flowing along the valley.
After meeting up with the main group we set initially along the same trial I had taken earlier and then taking a sharp left turn and instead of running down to the river bed we contoured along the side of the valley and were afforded some stunning views. We exited off the trail and crossed a road and started on the next trail which would loop around Sandstone Peak, a short sharp climb and we were contouring again along a nice rolling section I was playing cat and mouse with Jes and Thomas and I could here them on my tail, I pushed on and was caught by them as I approached the path that would take us to the top, a delicate video pirouette while standing on the summit and a group shot care of some other runners and we were back on our way on the homeward leg. Mostly downhill the trail rolled back the way we had come to out start point for a total on just under 12 miles for the morning, not as much as I had hoped for but a pretty tough 12 miles in total with a little over 4700’ of climbing.
This is an amazing trail the view just got better at every turn, even if you not up to running it, I barely was, it makes for a great hike.
With hindsight that was not the best run of the summer, I had tired legs before I started; a long week at work had taken its toll and it’s a major reminder of the importance of getting some quality sleep (read more than five hours a night!) and with that note I am off to grab some early zzzs!
Here's the Forerunner info and photos, which really don't do it justice.