Portola Valley Trails. I Still Have No Hiking Instinct ;)

I’m back to hiking! It’s been way too long. I was all excited I could hike in the fall/winter yet I didn’t go out once in November. Stupid. So I got all dressed and picked another random trail. This time I went to Portola Valley and did the Toyon and Old Spanish Trails. It was close and not an epic hike, since I’ve been off for way too long.

I was just getting over my chest cold so I didn’t want to be out long. So I figured just over 3 miles was smart. It was easy to get to, as you park on Alpine and there is a trail entrance right off the road. So I started my garmin and headed off into the “wilderness”. Toyon was just what I wanted. A nice easy hike with not much investment. My breathing was still a little off but this trail was nice and easy so I could push myself in my pace a bit. I did feel it the next day mind you, but that was worth it.

This is my “where the fuck am I going?” face. You will see this every time I’m hiking, unless I’m on one trail that goes in one direction with no offshoots. There’s a lot of second guessing and mental coin flipping going on in my head. Yes, I have directions, plus a gps, plus signs on the trail. That’s all for people who really care about where they are going. I just care about getting back to my car in a reasonable amount of time. I get a more panicked look the longer I’m out on the trail. Because I don’t know where my car is. 

I generally only show you the ones where I don’t look like I’m dying or want to kill someone. Like these! Don’t I look friendly? I apparently look friendly enough because an old couple asked me (ME) for directions. Buahahah! After I stopped laughing (since I guess I look like a hiker with all my fun gear), I actually got them back to their car. I would have felt bad if they had gotten lost in the woods and eaten by a mountain lion or something. Me? Not so much. 

See, I had found this funky lake, and the old people said they parked by the lake. I knew how to get there! The first picture has Canadian geese suspended in that ick. It was pretty grose. I think that they used it as a flotation device so they didn’t have to think about even staying buoyant. It’s not often I see a little green and red Christmas lake though. So I took a few pics. This was when I was on the Old Spanish Trail. And doubting myself.

There were lots of deer, and I even saw a buck with a nice rack. I saw about 8 or 9, they would leap out and then be gone before I could snap a good picture. This slowed down my pace since I didn’t want to get trampled.

So after being on the Old Spanish Trail a bit I started to doubt it would dump out back by my car. It would, I just had no faith, so I retraced my steps making for a 5.2 mile hike instead. I was feeling okay so it wasn’t too big of a deal. Then I passed where I would have come out at mile 3 if I had just listened to the sign posts. I needed the longer hike anyway. Then I lost my car. Parked on the main street. I’m brilliant. One day I will engage that damn car locator app. At least I didn’t get too lost on the trails! I hope the old couple didn’t get eaten by a mountain lion. I checked the news, I think they are fine, but you never know! 

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About The Author


I'm Shannon and I love to bake, hike, play video games and have fun. I currently live in the Bay Area with my husband and cat.

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