One of my favorite hikes. I haven't done this one for a while because it's just long enough to worry me about my knees. It used to take me about an hour and five minutes to complete. Yesterday it took almost an hour and a half, and that was with the assistance of my lovely new walking stick. Mr. Stick did his job! He made it easier for me to get down steep steps and up awkward slopes and across muddy patches. Mainly, with Mr. Stick I had three legs, two of which were always on the ground. This made my balance more secure. I was also able to use him to lean on, to reduce some of the force on my left leg.
All of this makes it sound like I should be in a wheelchair. My daughters joke about getting me one because I usually fail in shopping malls. But the thing is that there is a big difference in surfaces. It is much easier for me to manage uneven dirt than asphalt or vinyl flooring or especially concrete. I can do this hike much more easily than I can traverse even a short distance in a shopping mall.
The opening picture is near the entrance, which is a gate just off a freeway offramp (highway 101) in San Luis Obispo. The trail has been completed and maintained by the City of San Luis Obispo, with the help of various conservaion groups.
Just as I start up the hill I see this tree. I love to go under it, to enjoy the dappled sunshine under the leaves. One day I'll have a filter I can put on my camera so I can reproduce how extraordinarily beautiful it is in real life:
These folks passed me near the beginning of the trail.
I don't enjoy crowds, and when there are other hikers around I usually try to let them pass. On this hike I saw many cars at the entrance but not too many people on the trail. That's probably because a lot of people take different routes.
I'll never get tired of these trees.
You can see parts of San Luis Obispo from many places on the trail.
You can also hear the noise of traffic, of course. It doesn't bother me.
Sometimes fence posts can add.
Just a patch of path:
If I turn around and look uphill as I get near the end of the trail I see this:
That's San Luis Obispo Mountain, known locally as Madonna Mountain. Many people climb it often. I used to climb it almost once a week. Now I am hoping I will have the stuff to climb it on Easter morning, with hundreds of other people. On that particular day I don't mind the company.