I had a long run planned for this morning and really wanted to run in Quicksilver park. I haven't done much running there in the past since I am always afraid of getting lost or running in to mountain lions. I have been wanting to explore the trails with other runners who are familiar with them, but couldn't find anyone for a run today.
No problem, I thought. I printed up a map of the trails and planned my route. I would run about 2.5 miles to the McAbee entrance, then run the New Almaden trail through the park and come out the Mockingbird entrance, then run 2 miles home. I had no idea how long the run would be, but figured and hoped for a 10-12 mile run.
I headed off to the park and went in. It was then I was reminded of why I have been scared to run in the park alone. I knew the trails I wanted to run, but was having a difficult time figuring out the trail markers. I came to a junction with 3 trails shooting off, but a sign with 2 names. I stared at it trying to figure out which one it was pointing to for the New Almaden trail. I headed up the one I thought it was. And ran up and up and up. Just when I thought I had to be at the very top of the mountain I would turn a corner to find it continuing to go up. Suddenly I spotted a reservoir. It was then I realized I had taken the wrong trail. This one would also get to where I wanted to go, but it was a longer path. I was already so far on it I just kept going.
Long story short, after a few more trail changes, the path got ugly. Real ugly. It was narrow, trecherous and overgrown. At one point I looked down and was running through poison oak. Great. Luckily I had long pants on. At times I was terrified. Was this really the right path? What if I was lost? What if I came across a mountain lion? What if I fell and hit my head on a rock and was knocked out?
I did see some beautiful views. The above picture was of one of the better paths. Other areas were much more narrow and over grown. At one point the trail was blocked by a downed tree. I stopped, unsure what to do. There was no way to go around as there was a steep ravine on one side. The tree was too big to go over. And the thought of going all the way back nearly drove me to tears. I finally got the nerve to get down on my belly and shimmy under the tree. Ridiculous.
I even had to hop over a couple of little streams.
I finally made it out of the park. My legs were shaky from all the hills. I realized I had been gone for close to 2 hours. It was cold out and the rain was starting to come down. I was done. I called Pete and asked him to pick me up, then started crying.