This weekend John and I hiked to Alamere Falls, just north of Bolinas. We got up early, and John ran to pick up the zipcar and sandwiches while I showered at his place. The drive out was beautiful — it always strikes me how unique Northern California rural towns look. While small farmsteads in Utah, Ohio, West New York all sort of have the same vibe to me, Bolinas, and other towns like it, always pack that Grapes of Wrath punch. It's hard to define.
The hike itself was gorgeous, if a bit grueling on the way back. We actually got lost at one point — and not like "is this the right way" lost but like "oh, we have made a terrible mistake" lost. In the guide book it said to turn off the trail at a sign post reading "unmaintained trail." And we followed those instructions... about a half a mile too soon at an altogether different sign post, and in the entirely wrong direction. We ended up at Crystal Lake, inland from the falls, lost the trail, and basically had to just bulldoze our way through extremely dense growth, down very steep ravines and finally get back onto the trail.
We both managed to keep a cool head, though. If I had to be lost in the woods, I'd prefer to be lost with him. We finally made it down to the falls, past some jaw dropping views of Pelican Lake, and had lunch, sitting on the cliff face at the beach. The previous days had been cold and damp, but at the coast it was so warm and sunny.
We got back to the trail head around sunset, absolutely exhausted. On a lot of trail guides it said to allow for four hours, but I think we moved at a pretty quick pace (40 minute detour aside), and it took us about six hours. By the time we made it back past Bolinas on the drive home, the sunset reflecting on the lagoon was gorgeous.
We ordered food from Big Lantern on the way home, and after dropping the car off at a garage on Guerrero, walked back to pick up dinner and drinks, and got back to John's place... only to realize the house keys were back in the car. Killed me. And, once we tucked into dinner, I realized I had ordered the wrong lamb dish. A thing I learned about myself that day was that: getting lost in the wilderness? No prob. Exhausted, hungry, and locked out of the house? No bigs. Wrong food? Devastated.