What does three men, a dog and one woman have in common? Well at first glance nothing, but after a little digging you’ll see we have several things in common. We all met briefly while hiking in one of the beautiful East Bay Regional Parks in Oakland California.
While the HoneyBee and I were out hiking in the beautiful Redwood Regional Park in Oakland, CA. two weeks ago, we had the pleasure and opportunity to meet some very friendly people along the way. Wait, before I get into that let me tell you about the experience of the hike and walking beneath giants.
Well, let me tell you if you haven’t seen a redwood tree you have missed seeing one of the most magnificent sights ever and if you’ve had the opportunity to see some redwoods then you know what I’m talking about. Now let me tell you about walking beneath hundreds of these magnificent giants, it’s something very spiritual and almost humbling. So, our day started out around 8:30 am when we arrived at the Redwood Bowl Staging Area where we parked our car and begin our hike. We started out on the West Rim Trail which is nice and shady. We followed the West Rim Trail until we reached Orchard Trail which started our downward descent into the lower area of the park. Before we started down my HoneyBee said, “Jeanine, you know if you go down you have to come up somewhere”. Me being me said, “I know, I know let’s go I’ll be okay”. He warned me one last time, but me being me just I kept on going. This area is like a canyon and when you reach the floor of the canyon it’s nice and sunny. When you reach the canyon floor the Orchard Trail ends here at Stream and Bridle Trails. There are picnic areas, water fountains, restrooms and a beautiful meadow on the canyon floor. We stopped for a short water break and to take in the beautiful tranquil sights of the meadow. We soon continued our hike on the Stream Trail until we made it to Mill Trail which took us to French Trail. Remember the warning about going down and coming up, well we started going up, OMG did we start going up. Needless to say there were a ton of rest stops on our way back up. During one of the many rest breaks, I was sitting on a log when a dog came up to me. I’m not really afraid of dogs, but a dog with no owner is a little scary. I said, “Hello puppy, where’s your master”. I waited for an answer, no just kidding, but I waited for someone to appear no one. I said, “hello, hello” loudly and finally the owner came up the hill. He introduced himself and the dog. We had a short conversation in which he told me that we had chosen the steepest trail in the park. Who knew? Well, that explains it all. That’s correct French Trail is the steepest trail in Redwood Regional Park and it leads to the highest point in the park 1,619 Redwood Peak. Any who, the Redwoods are magnificently awesome. While walking beneath them you will hear complete silence or a multitude of sounds. Yes, the trees sometimes sound like creaking floors and doors opening in a spooky house. It’s really awesome to see 150 foot giants standing strong for so long.
Now back to the three men, a dog and one woman. Well, my HoneyBee is one of the men. The other two we men that we met on the trail who enjoy hiking and the beauty of nature as much as we do were Brian, a trail volunteer, and his dog Taluc. The two of them hike the park five days a week. A little bit about Brian is that he has had two lung surgeries and has Emphysema. AMAZING! The other gentleman that we met on the trail was 92 years old. When we saw him he immediately told us not once, but twice, “I’m 92 years old and I walk everyday, and I love it”. I gave him a hand clap because it was wonderful to see this man out there by himself at his age hiking on the steepest trail in the park. There were others out there hiking, but these two really stood out the most.
Here’s my question to you, what is holding you back? I mean really. There are many more people out there defying the odds and doing whatever it takes to live their lives to the fullest, without limitations. They are not letting health, money, lack of education, lack of friendships or any other excuse get in their way. They’ve made the decision to GET UP, GET OUT & GET IN! That’s right Get Up daily; Get Out experience or do what you want; Get In the game of life, stop letting it pass you by. What will you do?
As always, LIVE LAUGH, LOVE
RESOURCES on East Bay Trails & the Parks
East Bay Trails: Hiking Trails in Alameda and Contra Costa Counties
East Bay Regional Park Link http://www.ebparks.org/parks/redwood
This is a great water bottle to have while hiking because it has a built in water filter, making it easy to filter water from drinking water fountains.