I had a weekend without family last summer, so I treated myself to a much longer hike than usual. I argued with myself all the way from Oakland to West Marin, even called Mom to distract me from my attempts to justify not going. Silly brain.
I started from Bear Valley Visitor Center. Over the years, I’ve walked several times up to Divide Meadow and back, memorably once carrying a sleeping three-year-old slung on my back all the way down to the car. This time, I wanted to walk all the way out and back, but I didn’t know how long it would take or if I could manage. Usually, I’m limited by a whining child or everybody’s schedules (who’s playing futbol today when).
I started in the sun and found the fog at Divide Meadow.
The log benches in the meadow are a good place to eat lunch and spin. (I have a rule. If I want a photo of my spinning in a lovely place, I need to actually spin and not just take the photo.)
And then I walked
until I suddenly found the ocean, tilting horizon and Pt Reyes lighthouse and all. Arch Rock is the end of the trail.
I watched a seagull watch all the people. (It was not as lonely as the photos imply.)
Of course I spun more silk.
And then I walked back up and over the hill.
About thirteen miles round trip, I was back in the meadow at the Bear Valley trailhead.
My feet were tired and sore, but no blisters. A beautiful walk, through different woods and grasses and coastal scrub and Suddenly Ocean.
Here I am, a couple months later, and I can’t do even a short hike until this mysteriously injured toe rests enough to heal and my knees are in better shape. I’m not sure these photos are a consolation or a terrible temptation.