I was off work today and was able to opt outside and take advantage of some mild January weather. Actually, this hike was to take place on Tuesday, but the 32F and freezing rain made me postpone. I’m glad I did, since I lucked into 50 degrees toward the end of my hike!
Yes I said hike
This was not a run. It wasn’t even planned as a run. The idea was to hike the 11ish mile portion of the Buckeye Trail over at Lake Clendenning. By parking along the road, I was able to hike 1.6 miles down to the trailhead. Then I followed the trail which ran pretty close to the lake, back to my vehicle. I need some endurance time on trails if I have any confidence in finishing the Tarawera 62K in three weeks.
I am becoming more involved with the Buckeye Trail Association, which is a group of volunteers who maintain and promote the trail. On route to building new trail at Piedmont Lake, we drove across the bridge at Lake Clendenning. One volunteer pointed out the blue blazed trail heads, mentioning this section was about 11 miles long, and you could make it into a loop. My little trail ears perked right up. Something that I could do other than an “out and back”? I made a mental note.
Trail Maps Christmas Presents
Santa brought me several section maps of the Buckeye Trail for Christmas. I want to start hiking the sections of the BT closest to me-of course the end goal is going to be to section hike the entire BT! This section of trail is only a half hour drive for me.
New (to me) Trail
There are hardly any words better than “new trail”. It’s always so exciting and interesting to start down a new trail. You have no expectations and never know what you will run into. The weather was cold at the start. I parked off the road, close to where I would exit the trail back onto Route 799 (Point 21) . I then set off for the 1.6 mile (my BT map was spot on!) to the trail head further north on Rt 799 (Pt 18.)
It was a great day to opt outside. A little cool at the start, I had to change out my fleece hat for a warm headband as I hiked up the first hills. This is not a hard section of the Buckeye Trail. There are many switchbacks so there is no big climbs.
White Blazed Trail
I did by accident take the white blazed trail down to the road. This is the white/orange line on the map. After I got down to the dirt road, I did pull out my map. It turns out I was now on the road. It was fine. I walked down the road, to the intersection with the BT.
Hmm. If I climb back up the blue blazed trail, it seems this is taking me in the same direction that I just came in. But where are my blazes? I study the map. Okay, I walk down the road where I can see the signpost. Nope, I think I need to go down the other road. Sure enough, 1/10 of a mile down, blue blaze! Score! (Note: this intersection just needs one more blaze right in this area.)
Building Foundations and Daffodils
I love to see old building remnants and foundations. I will be back on this section to see if there are any daffodils to rescue.
There was the random boat in the woods that just begged for a photo op.
This is a good hike. Especially where you can set it up for a loop.
Were you lucky enough to opt outside on this mild January day?