Sunday, November 11, 2007

El Moro 15 Miler

We have had an amazing run this morning in Emerald and El Moro Canyons. I overslept though, and had to rush to get there on time – so I forgot the camera – and no one else had one... But this was really the only hiccup… Well, almost the only one – after we hit the crazy uphill between miles 4 and 5 Steph decided to head back to her car as she did not feel quite herself this morning. As she seemed to be confident about finding the way back I did not run back with her. Thanks to Greg who took a role of my conscience this time and made it clear he would never let Steph go back alone like that, we were worried about her whereabouts until we eventually got to the parking lot and found that Steph’s car is gone already.

I forgot to mention, by the way, there were 7 of us, who left the Park Ridge at 6:30am this morning: Diego, Greg, Jeff, Ryan, Shelli, Steph, and myself.

The first 3 miles we had a pretty curvy single-track trail with a thick brush on both sides and a nice canopy above. After that we ran in a canyon surrounded by rocky hills with a lot of natural caves in them. There were so many of them that the place looked like a cavemen’s city :-)

At mile 4 we touched down Laguna Canyon road – right on the opposite side from the Stair Step trail – and ran uphill for a couple of miles. Then after a crazily exciting downhill we found ourselves in Emerald Canyon. We ran it all the way west until we found ourselves in front of a rather high fence with a barbwire on top, protecting some posh Laguna Beach gated community from trail runners and other animals. But we managed to sneak in anyways constantly looking around in anticipation of a SWAT team and helicopters – or at least several guards with guns :-)

We ran along PCH for a while until we reached the Crystal Cove Park, were we started on El Moro Ridge, than took Eastern Cut Across to the El Moro Canyon, and eventually Slow ‘N Easy trail to the Bommer Ridge that got us to our Park Ridge parking lot gate, which was exactly mile 15 of our run. I was pretty impressed with Ryan’s precision :-)

As Ryan said about the Slow ‘N Easy trail, it was Slow indeed but we almost never got to the Easy part. I guess it is “easy” only compared to Elevator trail, which is a mile shorter with the same elevation gain. I should try it next time.

Here is Jeff's post about our today's run:

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