I’m usually a hiker, but the nice thing about trail running is that no one expects you to wear a shirt. And on this beautiful, eighty degree evening, I was happy for any excuse to feel the air and sunshine on as much of me as possible as I made my way up the trail to Angel’s Rest after work yesterday. I guess I could have walked in a sports bra and shorts, but it wouldn’t have been quite the same. The only disadvantage to running is that it makes it hard to carry a camera — sorry, no pictures for this one.
I’m not much of a runner at all, but this was a very pleasant run — I took a little more than half an hour to make the climb, and then sunbathed on a rock for a while at the top. I got up to start jogging back down the trail mostly because I wanted to return to the creek I’d crossed earlier while it was still warm enough to enjoy the cold water. I succeeded in that, and happily sat with my feet in the stream for a while, just upstream from a drop off for a small waterfall. Aside from the actual effort of running up a steep hill, this was a wonderfully relaxing evening expedition.
It seems like a lot has changed since my last after-work outing up this trail about a month ago. Last time I saw trillia at lower elevations, but the blooms on those had all but disappeared. A whole other host of plants caught my eye, though. Here’s what I managed to remember and identify, either from memory or my looking it up when I got home:
- Vanilla-leaf is blooming
- Cleavers are blooming — their leaves are stickier, too, than when I made the acquaintance of these cute little plants while picking nettles.
- Oxalis, or Oregon Wood Sorrel, is coming up, but I only saw it by the creek. I munched on some delicious, lemony leaves while I cooled my feet in the water.
- There was a small Indian Plum plant sprouting new leaves by the creek, too.
- False Solomon”s Seal is out (I don’t know what “True” Solomon’s seal looks like)
- There was also a purple flower that was just about everywhere, and I’m surprised I can’t find it in my books. I’ll ask around.
- There are berries to come! Thimbleberries and Blackberries are both showing their leaves.
- There are less welcome plants to come as well! Young poison oak is coming out. I knew a guy once who said that if you start eating the leaves in the spring, and gradually increase your dosage, you can be immune to that terrible contact rash for the coming season. I’m not brave enough to try it.
Again, I like to pretend I’m the adventurous type, but it’s great to return to the same places and see things change. I imagine I’ll be back here again before too long, with another update.