I sat in my truck in Silverado Canyon, in the pitch black dark, waiting for the sun to lighten the sky this morning. I saw a woman hike by with a headlamp and a reflective vest. Just as the sky lightened, I ventured out of the car and saw a man hiking out from Maple Springs Road. It’s that hot out here in Southern California. People are resorting to night hiking. When I woke at 4AM today, the weather was hot and muggy, and I live at the seashore!
I took off around 6:15 AM for a run just on Maple Springs road, an out-and-back to a place named “Four Corners,” for fifteen total miles. Only three miles in, I was dripping sweat down my back. That’s when two male bikers road up behind me, struggling also with the heat. They said, “You’re our inspiration. Can you pull us?” Not a chance.
This was one of those “just-put-one-foot-in-front-of-the-other” runs. Seven and a half miles uphill in this heat was just too much to think about. If I would have thought about it, I wouldn’t have been able to make the trip. I took in the awesome scenery, noticed the uncountable deer tracks, and searched the trail for cougar tracks (saw none). I didn’t see a single other soul for the remainder of my trip up Maple Springs as that hot morning sun bared down upon me.
Four Corners showed me wonderful views of the San Gabriel Mountains, and on the other side, Orange County and Harding Truck Trail. I wasn’t going to stick around long for the scenery though. Four Corners had to be the hot spot of the entire mountain. Hidden from view, I sat next to the railing as I unpacked some fuel, drank up and refilled my handheld. The sound of a motorcycle startled me at first – its motor sounded like a large cat purring (ha, ha!). Well, this guy on the motorcycle raced up Maple Springs and at Four Corners continued up onto a berm and jumped, that is flew high (I mean got some air!) off the end of that thing. I was amazed. And impressed. Too bad I didn’t get a picture.
I got little relief for the run back down. Yes, the trip was downhill, and that was good, but the heat, oh the heat – it slowed my pace more than I realized. I got some heavenly cloud cover for about a half a mile. Several motorcyclists rode past me. Eventually, the two mountain bikers I saw going up raced past me and yelled out “Great job!” Finally, when I made it to the bottom of the canyon a wonderful cool breeze blew hard into my face. That lasted for several minutes – enough to get me through those last three miles to my truck.