I’ve been shivering in southern California lately, not because it’s been particularly cold, but because I’ve been sick. Apparently my body still relates winter to sickness, even when I am staring at palm trees daily.
Fortunately, I started getting better before a scheduled hike with a group of my San Diego friends! I’ve been wanting to go hiking for so long, that I decided that as long as I wasn’t deathly ill in bed, I would make the hike. I didn’t care if I lagged way behind everyone else; I was going! Also fortunately, it didn’t rain that day. We almost cancelled the hike because of the weather forecast earlier in the week. But the day that dawned was absolutely gorgeous and sunny, and a little on the cool side, which was perfect for hiking.
We drove to Poway to do the Mount Woodson Hike. It’s a couple hours long, and uphill almost the entire way, but not so different from other mountains I have tackled in the past. The scenery was breath-taking.
As predicted, I fell pretty far behind everyone else on the hike. My lungs weren’t up to capacity; they were still full of whatever sick gunk got in there, and I coughed a lot along the way, trying to clear them. But it was absolutely worth it. The air was fresh and clear, and a couple of my hiking buddies lagged behind with me at times to keep me company.
Nearing the top of the mountain, we started to see small patches of snow! That was really surprising to me, as the elevation wasn’t that high. But it had been a little on the colder side lately, and precipitation had been falling. And Poway is known for getting colder and frostier than other parts of San Diego. So I let it slide. But snow! I didn’t expect to see it at all, except in the distant mountains. But it was here! I could touch it! (I didn’t, though. Nor did I take pictures of it. While snow in San Diego is kind of unique, I’ve seen enough snow that I was jaded. Sort of wanted to pretend it wasn’t existing beneath my feet. Plus I was sick. Didn’t want to give my body any additional ideas about hanging onto my cold.)
One of the most exciting features at the top of the mountain was “Potato Chip Rock,” a thin protrusion of rock that looked really precarious and fragile. A really cool photo opportunity. We all took turns showing our daringness, all internally praying that the rock wouldn’t pick this moment to crumble.
When we all got back down the mountain, we had a picnic of grilled steaks and pork, and tortellini noodles cooked up on a portable grill. Very delicious, and one of the best ways to end a hike. All in all, I had an incredibly enjoyable day, and I’m excited to do something like this again.
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