6.4 mi rt
max ele: 1281 ft
gain: 2028 ft
gpx track not provided. I did a fair amount of cross country travel.
I had a new Wander hat with a pom pom (which I hear decreases my aerodynamics) that needed to go for a walk. I got this hat because my partner gave me a gift card for my 56th birthday last week. The gift card was for my favorite beer place here in Bham…Wander. I decided I needed this hat. Also that I am getting old. How did that happen?
The morning started out quite windy so I waited until noonish in a hope that the wind would die down. I have seen what happens in the woods in high winds and to be frank, it scares me. BUTTTTT eventually you just need to walk.
I had the best intention to connect two trails in the Fragrance Lake area:
I was going to go up the $2 trail to the lake seen above in green and then connect up with the other trail (I learned of the name tonight but just don’t remember) seen in red with the short road walk connecting them on the other end.
All started out as planned, I parked just outside the gate (another reason I chose this one, I wasn’t behind a gate in case I got out after dark) and headed up the somewhat newish rerouted made nice trail to Fragrance Lake. Normally I cut off to the lake about 1.6 mi in but it had been a long time since I had done the ridge trail so I went that way. Apparently it had been so long since I had done the ridge trail that I did not know that there was now a mountain bike trail down the other side!
I followed that trail down, down, down and towards the end of my ~1000 ft loss realized that I was going to come out on the Interurban Trail. Crumb. Soooo, I poked around down there to see if I could find an old road back up or perhaps if I could run the creek up but it turned out to be a lot of work so I turned around and headed back up.
I want to mention that on my way down the trail passes through an area with some impressively large and old trees. It is apparent that at some point in the past there was a fire that these large giants all survived. Seeing those made the elevation loss and subsequent gain worth it.
Part way back up the trail I noticed on my gpsr that the Fragrance Lake trail was a mere 750 ft away…famous last words ( : Actually connecting the two wasn’t that bad. I dropped down a steep hillside, crossed the creek, then went back up a steep hillside on the other side then connected with the trail. I was quite sweaty at this point and possibly dirty when I popped out on the proper trail. The other hikers looked at me strangely. Huh.
So, running short on daylight I decided to make it to the lake on the regular trail. I then made the loop around the lake and went back out on the $2 trail taking the old trail at the bottom cutting out all those silly switchbacks on the reroute. I like those silly switchbacks on the way up but not so much on the way out ( :