Today I went off on my solo tree-hugging expedition in the Oregon wilds, as I like to do each time I come out here. Being all by myself in the vast expanse of nature reassures me that we haven't completely ruined the planet just yet.
This time I picked Cascade Head, located just west of US 101 a few miles north of Lincoln City on the Oregon coast. The website that referred me said the difficulty was "moderate." Ay.
Now, I'm a very fast walker, but it took me just over an hour and a half to travel the 1.7 mile trail. Why? Because it's a 1200 foot elevation gain along a narrow, muddy path. Basically it was like taking the stairs to the top of the former World Trade Center and going back down again. Except imagine that there are elk on the staircase. (Pictures to come when I get back to New York.)
On the way back down, just as my knees were starting to ache a bit, I passed a woman going up.
She was jogging.