Sunday, February 22, 2009

San Diego - Running Friends Part 2

Part of the joy of visiting San Diego (or anywhere for that matter) is exploring the area by running. To run in San Diego in mid-February is a huge boost for me. Shorts and running bra and sun glasses. I haven't run in that gear since last August!

Beloved Rooster is a former running partner from Seattle who moved to San Diego last year. This was the perfect opportunity to hook up for a run and make that a trail run, please! When I asked about meeting for a run, Aimee's response was "HELL YES!" so I'd knew it would be fun. Fortunately the foot cooperated so I could run.

Lo and behold it was rainy in So Cal when I first got there. Seattle has this nice gentle mist which really isn't so bad to run in. So Cal rain tends to dump but at least compared to below 40 degrees it felt warm. Aimee had a couple of ideas for where to run and had suggested Torrey Pines as a good place to get both trails and beach. When K and I visited San Diego last together it was for a wedding in 2005 and one of the places we visited was Torrey Pines. We both loved it and thought it would be a great place to run. So I was all over this suggestion.

Aimee and I met at UCSC Training Facility and were able to use the restrooms. This sign was about 3' x 4' and very prominent. I felt guilty just looking at it! We trotted off catching up as we went. Aimee had not been on these trails but had an idea of where to go. It was a pleasant mid-50's with clouds but no rain.

Soon we came to the Torrey Pines Gliderport which had lots of signs about NOT going onto the promising areas where trails might be. An employee said that there was a trail to the north of the parking lot and that there was a trail down to the beach but we shouldn't do it since it would be "mucky."

Woohoo! both Aimee and I revel in muck. So we went off and came to a dead end but soon found the trail down, down, down to the beach. It was a quad-jarring staircase which was going to be lots of fun to come back up.

And then we were on the beach. I have to admit that one of the few things I miss about Southern California are it's beaches. The pacific Northwest just cannot compare to to the soft white sand, soothing waves, fresh sea air and scenery and not to mention the balmy weather. It was early on a Tuesday so we had the beach to ourselves.

After a few miles and a bit of scrambling over a point and some rocks, we found a trail up into the Torrey Pine Preserve. The scenery was pretty amazing and I wanted to get high enough on the bluff to see a Torrey Pine. Aimee had done a spin class and weight class the day before so could feel her legs talking to her but she was also game. It was worth the climb to see the views off the bluff. We had to turn back around but I was so tempted to just keep running. Next time.

I had not had breakfast before running and we ended up being out there for a longer time than usual because of trail conditions and photo opportunities. I was starving towards the end but there were still so many things to look at including washed up kelp, interesting bird tracks and funky rocks. We could see a storm rolling in off the pacific and knew we'd be getting wet as we climbed the bluff back to the cars.
Aimee suggested breakfast at one of my favorite places and a perfect running vacation was complete. Thanks for the great run Aimee!

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