Thursday, April 26, 2012

Maxwell Falls

Yesterday I headed out for a late hike/run with the pup to Maxwell Falls in Evergreen. Oh how I love the town of Evergreen! The area is so lush with cool little shops and trails galore. Great place to be.

The other day we made it out to Gudy Gaskill for three hours. It was such a beautiful day to run and I slightly over did with the new shoes and pushing hard on the uphills. With the low heel drop my calves paid the price. The back of my legs were incredibly tight from calf (my gastrocnemius...I loved this word second to my absolute favorite sternocleidomastoid in A&P. Gastrocnemius means "stomach of the leg") to lower back, no lie. My left calf was so tight I couldn't walk without a slight limp and it felt like a rubber band about to snap. After a day of stretching and massage (thank you honey, although I think you enjoyed making me howl in pain a little too much) I ventured out to Maxwell Falls with plans to go slow and mostly hike with "just a little running".

This intersection befuddles me. I know where the straight and back arrow go but what the heck are the others? One day, when I have more time, I am just going to have to check out all those extra trails. Then maybe I'll come back to this marker and make a more detailed signage.

The trail is very dog friendly as it runs along a creek leading to the falls. There are plenty spots for pups to wade and drink. 

On one web link for this trail there was great discussion (from both sides) about whether pups are allowed off-leash or not. It's amazing to me how many people can be so harshly anti-dog and so black & white about the whole thing, it's downright rude like "how dare you let your mutt come near the outdoors!". Then again I can kind of see their point at times when I personally observe some really asshole-ish owners who let their poorly behaved off-leash dog menace people and defecate in the middle of the trail without picking it up. There's this park by our house where I take Argos when I can't run him. We walk or run loops on the bike path that surrounds the little park. It amazes and disgusts me how many dog owners let their pooches take craps on the sidewalk and just leave it there! And it's not just a little pile of poo either, it's as if the dogs are all butt scooting poop-walkers leaving their waste in a trail along the concrete. What the hell people?!?

Ah poo, I digress...

Back to Maxwell Falls.

This trail has one hell of a gorgeous overlook if you take the first right turn after crossing the wooden bridge. I cannot recall the name of the trail...something "loop" but take it if you want a little longer hike.

The trail this way, once it gets to the big looming boulders, tends to suddenly fade. There aren't any cairns to guide you. I am not usually directionally challenged, but have lost the trail on now two occasions only to meet up with it eventually and find my way. Just a warning.

I went straight after the bridge right to the falls on the way up and then went the "loop" way on the way back. First, after I viewed the not-so-giant falls (more of a trickle) I continued going straight which led me to the upper parking lot. I hadn't ever gone this way and wanted to see where it led to. From the falls it is only about 0.20 miles to the upper parking lot. It is approximately 2 miles to the falls from the lower parking lot. 

From the upper parking lot I then continued up onto the loop trail. Total was only about 5.5 or 6 miles (I forget) and I moved at a great clip. The legs screamed at me at first and I felt a tight ouch in the deep buttocks/lower back area but eventually things started to loosen up and feel great. I feel quite happy with my running lately and how the new shoes are working for me.

Finished the day with a stop at Da Kind soups. Holy hell this place, although pricey, is so worth it. Soups are out of this world as well as their sandwiches. 

Argos is thinking, "just a little bit closer, just a little closer, and I can sneak a kiss!"

This past week my good friend Kadence did a school presentation on Guard/Attack Dogs and asked if Argos would be part of it. He had a great time, behaved well, and was hard-core flash mobbed at the end of the presentation. As soon as the question & answer session finished one kid raised his hand and asked, "can I pet the dog?" With the teachers' permission, I un-clipped his leash and Argos went to the kid. Immediately he was swarmed by little people to the point I could barely see just a reddish tan ear poking up from the crowd. It was hilarious. 

What this picture doesn't show is the few seconds after it was taken Kadence got right in range for a big wet one perfectly placed.

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