Category Archives: hiking

neighborhood hike

My mom and I took a nice walk on Saturday morning up to Twin Falls.  My parents house is just a couple miles from this trail head, and in high school I can remember going on training runs from my house, up this trail and back during soccer and lacrosse season.  This weekend, though, it was just a nice walk with my mom. I’ve become accustomed to urban parks and trails in and around Oakland, so its nice to be reminded of what a walk in the woods feels like.  Whether I live in the city or a small town, it’s become very clear to me that I need to have easy access to trails.  They keep me calm, balanced, and happy.  I’m lucky to have grown up in a place where I learned this from an early age.  Nothing about this hike is really strenuous, just a nice easy climb; I think about 2.5 miles round trip, but its just so rewarding to get outside.

Moss covered maple branches hanging over the trail. The average 90 inches of rain that falls here each year keeps these plants green and moist year round.

A lookout to twin falls about half way up the trail. The lower falls drop about 150 feet over a huge granite slab.

Douglas Fir stand along the trail.

The upper falls from the bridge.


Redwood Ridge Trail

A 3 mile hike one afternoon in February in Redwood Regional Park, Oakland CA. I’d give myself a C- for the photo quality, but hopefully you get the idea….

Redwoods along a ridgeline.

"Whew. That is soo fricking beautiful." Kassie says to Kentucky as they stop to take a quick picture.

New Years Day

A six mile trek from Claudia's Cabin to Julia Pfiffer State Beach, New Years Day, 2012, Big Sur, CA

Green Hour 2012

Monica, Kentucky and I on a hike in Wildcat Canyon. Five minutes ahead on this hike, Kentucky decided to try and herd the cattle. It didn't work out so well. (Pictures to follow in future post)

I work for the National Wildlife Federation.  One of the core values they encourage for kids and adults alike is to spend an hour outside everyday.  For kids they call it “Green Hour” and recommend “unstructured play” and honestly, I think that approach can work pretty well for adults too.  I’ve decided that in 2012, I’m finally going to break my blogger-bloc (aka my aversion to writing blog posts) and share some of my green hour adventures.  I hope you enjoy them.

I’m an avid outdoor enthusiast.  I like to hike, bike, jog, walk my dog.  I try and do this daily.  Often it’s as simple as running errands on foot or bike, strolling over to my friends house, biking to yoga, but what I love to do most is explore the open spaces near where I live.

A little background.  I consider myself pretty darn privileged.  I’m white, raised middle class, great education (despite student loans), and I’ve had the best jobs since I graduated college.  I also consider myself privileged because my parents instilled a deep respect and enthusiasm for the outdoors from an early age.  Hiking while I was an infant in my dad’s back pack, skiing as soon as I could walk, growing up in a place where the wilderness was literally at my doorstep.

I was raised in a rural, logging community in the Pacific Northwest.  The wilderness was literally at my doorstep and I took full advantage of this.  In my adult life, I’ve lived in some of the greatest cities in our country – namely San Francisco, D.C. and now Oakland.  Part of how I make city living work for me is that I make it a point to live near a big urban park, and I take the time to get to know the hiking, biking, and walking trips that I can go on within 20 minutes from my house.   With the help of my handy smart phone, I’m going to start sharing these adventures on this blog.  We’ll see where it takes us……