Sunday, February 3, 2008

I'm Baack...

I missed my Friday entry in the blog. Also missed Saturday. Sorry if you are following along. It isn't much of a diary without daily entries, but sometimes it's just easier to watch TV than it is to pound out a few keystrokes. But, I think I'm back at this point - no guarantees - but we'll see where things lead from here.

I got back to running yesterday. My plan called for a 40 minute tempo run, so I took off to Crystal Cove State Park and did a run along the coast. The 40 minutes gave me just enough time to put in a 4 mile run. Still not fast, but doing better than when I first started.

I enjoy this particular run. It is along a paved trail, parallel to Pacific Coast Highway. The only people that share the trail are walkers and other runners. Vehicles and bicycles stay on PCH, so there's no fighting wheels. Also, the views are spectacular - the ocean is about 100 feet below. The coast along this stretch of the OC is a mixture of rocky coast and sandy beach.

The first time that I was introduced to this section of coast was back in college, when my Ecology Course at UC Irvine (Bio 101E) used the tide pools for laboratory excercises. I have vivid memories of a lab where we had to chart the territorial habits of the barnacles attached to the rocks in the tide pools. That was back in the days when this section of coast was still private property - owned by the Irvine Compnay. No buildings, no public usage from Cameo Shores on the north to Irvine Cove on the south. The only things that were there were the cottages - all privately owned on private land, the Shake Shack on PCH, and the Mobile Home park in Scotsman's Cove. These days, there's a golf course, a resort timeshare hotel, a shopping center and homes on the inland side of PCH. In return for the right to build, the Irvine Company donated the current land that comprises Crystal Cove State Park to the State of California for safekeeping. The State has added some improvements - restrooms, parking, converting the cottages to rental properties, removing the mobile homes, and paved trails. So for now (at least until the next budget crisis), this little piece of coast has been saved (yeah - I know - improved but saved). There is talk of another resort hotel going in on the inland side of Pacific Coast Highway, but I haven't seen any new construction going on - other than the homes from Shady Canyon encroaching the hills facing the ocean.

Today's run is a 90 minute run. My son needs to row this morning, so I think I'll drop him off and then do a back bay run. I'll check in with you all later today.

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