Canyon Park

116 reviews
hiking
14 days ago

The trail offers many switchbacks and brief elevation changes that add up over a hike. Mostly you are in woodland that closes in on you from time to time, producing a tunnel effect that prompts you to go faster. Naturally, this too leaves its mark on your body when you hit the final few miles, if like me, you go in the reverse direction and end up in the sunnier portions at the end. The woods are mostly juniper but a few areas are dominated by handsome oak specimens tucked in along the trail. There are indeed scant lake views, but one can make the most of these by wandering off-trail to commune with the shore and water. On the whole, however, the shorelines present a rather foreboding experience of stone, Hieronymus Bosch cedar formations, and abandoned bric-a-brac of by-gone tourist days. I should mention at this point the many, many forsaken bathrooms and picnic tables one will discover as he or she glides through the forests. I find these charming and humbling; others might find them a nuisance. We might all agree, however, that it is like hiking backwards through time. The trail is often rocky, that is for sure. Many of these formations are flat and smooth. The ones that are not can be navigated with few mishaps provided one maintains Zen lightness. As others have pointed out, you have to cross numerous roads and it takes some looking to see where the trail picks up. Be rest assured, the trail does pick up. Just use your trail-nose. My final observation is that one will see numerous side trails that are not on the trail map as they are not part of the trail officially. But unofficially some of these can lead to notable discoveries, as when yours truly found a dumping ground of partial animal skeletons somewhere off-trail. Not sure what happened there; just grateful not to have been there when the deal went down. .