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Monday, July 27, 2009

New Shoes, New Trails

This morning’s goals: 1) Try out new trail shoes (Salomon XA Pro) and 2) Run Hunwut and Alwut trails in search for the other two supposed entrances into Aliso and Wood Canyons.

I never heard the alarm this morning, and though I woke late, I was pleased to feel improvement in my hand. Some pain still, but nothing like the past couple days. I opted to skip the Motrin, drank a cup of coffee instead, then headed out about 7:30 AM. That’s dangerously late for my heat tolerance level.

Well, I couldn’t find Canyon View Park this morning – crazy, one might think, being that I run the Aliso Wood Canyons every week. But I have only taken off from the Canyon View Park twice. And so I drove around, in a rush against the heat. I turned down a street that looked familiar. (It only looked familiar because I’ve passed it on the way to the park before) At the dead-end I could see Cholla Trail in the distance, so I knew at least which direction to travel.

Seems like I’m always starting my day with an adventure!

As for the shoes: I have only ever worn New Balance running shoes, both on the road, and the trail. On one occasion, I purchased Brooks, and after running in them twice, my feet ached. (Those Brooks became my gym shoes). Needless to say, I was a bit leery going for something other than New Balance. To begin, I’m pleased to find that the Salomons were not too heavy, as they are waterproof, and seemed more solid than my usual trail shoes. In addition, they grabbed the terrain noticeably well.

On the other hand, the Salomon’s seem a little wide for my foot, only slightly, but I’d imagine people with narrower feet might have a problem – plenty of toe room though. The only main problem I had was with pull-tight lacing system. I just couldn’t seem to get this no-tie lacing system right. I’d either pull them too tight, or not tight enough, and found myself adjusting the tension 4 or 5 times. I’m hopeful, I’ll figure that out.

The one problem I hoped to gain relief from with this new shoe is the toe problems I’ve been experiencing lately (that is pain). To be honest, and I really do need to face the facts here, I’m pretty certain that weight loss is the real answer to that. (It’s been the cure in the past). So, I’m holding out for a final decision whether these shoes are Yay or Nay.

As for the new trails: After making my way up and down the lovely shaded Wood Creek Trail and winding my way through Coyote Run and up Mathis a bit, I headed off for Hunwut, which is just beyond the Old Corral. It’s a dry, exposed (HOT) trail that ends at a Kiosk and a gate with a sign that reads “No Trespassing, Violators will be Prosecuted”. I ran right on through a portion of the chain link that had been peeled back, and climbed up a wide dirt trail, that soon turned to a steep paved road. The end of this paved road dumped me into the cul-de-sac of a gated community.

I hit Alwut Trail up Wood Canyon a bit. And it began with a pretty good climb, continuing to the end. After about a quarter mile, the trail ended at a barbed-wire fence with a “Road Closed” sign attached. The trail on the other side was overgrown, so I took the opportunity to sit in the bench seat up on top of that trail and take in the majestic, California, dry brown grasses that contrast so greatly the lush Coast Live Oaks and Sycamores that run along the creek. I could see someone climbing Mathis in the distance. And way over there was another person making their way down Rockit. Awesome.

Miles logged Monday morning: 6.27


  1. Hunwut and Alwut? I didn't even know there were trails by that name!

    The new blog is shaping up nicely!

  2. Thanks Tom. I'm having a tough time figuring out how to put in pics so that a click will enlarge them. Mine aren't going in that way -- I guess I'll figure it out eventually.

    We run right past Hunwut and Alwut on Wood Canyon Trail (past Mathis towards Cholla). I was hoping to find another usable entrance into the park. No such luck.