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Saturday, October 17, 2009

Early to Bed, Early to Rise / Emerald Canyon Trail Run

I was on the road under dark skies this morning for a run on a new trail, not actually “new”, but new to me. Not only a new trail, but a new park, again just new to me – Crystal Cove State Park, I’m sure has been around for many years. In fact, I camped at the beach end of it when I was in girl scouts so many years ago.

I met Tom a few minutes before 7:00 AM. One other member, a no-show, we took off about 7:05, on a down hill. That joy was quick to end for a steady climb along Bommer Ridge. The weather was still pleasant, though weather reports promised 90 degrees. I was well prepared with a camelback full of water on my back, and a camera, as well to document the trail.

We took El Moro Ridge to the Old Emerald Falls Trail which was a lovely downhill, cool weathered, single track. And it was pretty much down hill after that til the end of the canyon (or at least as far as we could run). At the bottom of Old Emerald Falls, we came out at Emerald Canyon, which was lush and shaded by giant sycamores and live oaks. The canyon walls were vaguely orangish, at one spot with overhanging outcrops. The sight was gorgeous.

I believe it was around mile four, or around there, that we reached “The Falls.” They were dry, but promised another run, another time, overflowing with water. We ran ahead on past that until the trail ended in Laguna Beach at a chain link fence, perhaps a country club on the other side (I could see tennis courts off in the distance).

At "The Falls"

Dead end past Emerald Falls

On Emerald Canyon (before the climb back up)

Emerald Cyn Trail (Heading back up)

Well, after running down for so long into Emerald Canyon, there was only one way back – and that was UPHILL. Actually, it wasn’t too bad, only a few tough places. Instead of turning off onto the Old Emerald Falls single track, we continued up Emerald Canyon to Bommer Ridge. And continuing on under bright, warm skies, we ended this Saturday morning run with 9.85 miles. I was dang tired.

1 comment:

  1. I've never turned left at the bottom of Old Emerald and was wondering if the trail went through. Now I know :) I LOVE running down that singletrack though. For sure one of my favorites!