On Saturday afternoon I was getting kind of tired, and it was already 96 degrees. I still wanted to go on a hike so I chose a trail from my easy book. I decided to go to the Stinging Nettle trail out of Sherman Beach Park. This park is a bit of a pain to get to, but I do like it, and it is pretty flat. It technically connects to Castlewood, but that part of the trail is closed. I first came here in June and found that bikes liked it too, which is totally fine by me. It is a nice 2 mile loop I think that somehow last time I got 5 miles out of. Yeah. Directionally challenged. I wanted to go up to Cedar Bluff as well, just as long as I kept it under 5 miles.
I was pretty confident after going to Castlewood and it being dry after a monsoon like storm that I would be fine. I had forgotten in June when it was dry there was still a bit of flooding in some of the lower parts of the trail. And yes, we had a mega storm on Friday night. Therefore, a 1/4 mile into my hike I found flooded trails. I decided I didn’t want to wade through water for miles on end, and I was also getting scratched up by fallen stinging nettles. Go figure! Those things BURN when they touch you. So I turned around and headed the other way.
If you turn right from the parking lot you get to the Al Foster trail. It is deceptively easy. In fact, this is the linear trail where I did almost 9 miles instead of my planned 4 because I turned down another side trail but still had to get back to my car. It hurt, a lot. This is a great trail for socializing since it is so wide. It is also very popular, but bikes have enough room to pass. It is super flat as well. I wanted to do 4 miles since it was very hot and there was no breeze.
I love my garmin but I’ll wax poetic about that at a later date. On Saturday I had a bit of a user error. I double pressed the start button, which meant I paused it and was walking aimlessly and didn’t look to see if my mileage was moving. I figured it out after about a mile, but I wasn’t sure on how long I had it paused until I got home and did the math. The math was about a mile so I did 5.5 miles with the bit of the first trail instead of 4. Ugh. I hate linear trails!
On this trail you get a little peak of the river at times, but really it isn’t that remote and doesn’t have breathtaking views. However, if you go on a very hot and humid afternoon you seem to get the trail to yourself! It also isn’t fully shaded which is always my preference. But as I said, this is great for socializing and taking your time, or your dogs!
There are weird mini tracks that are close to half of the trail. Mostly the southern bit. It took me awhile to figure it out, but then I saw this:
Yes, seriously. A freaking train. I think you can catch this thing from the Glenco part, but I’m unsure as I always park at Sherman Beach. It is weird, and takes a bit of my zen out of my walk (because this is not a hike for me) when people and kids are waving at you.
So if you want a good starter trail, hit this one up. Be sure to turn around when you start to feel tired though, because I swear this one grows in miles!