Lost Valley Trail revisited

  Lost Valley Trail in the Weldon Springs conservation area is a trail I haven't done since April 2010. It looks like this trail has also gotten some new mileage signs since I last visited, as well as possibly rerouted or remeasured; in April of 2010 I marked the trail as 9 miles long, the latest edition of Steve Henry's book says the trail is about 9.5 miles, and the markers on the trail itself pronounced the trail as a little over ten miles. That officially makes Lost Valley the longest hike I've completed yet. And it felt good!

There was a large group about a half a mile behind me, but they disappeared after awhile, and other than that I ran into no other hikers until the near end of the trail. However there were what seemed like millions of mountain bikers... all were very polite and friendly as they zoomed by, though sometimes I had trouble hearing them coming up some of the twisty turns with low visibility.

A smidge over ten miles took me about 4 hours. I didn't take any pictures again because I'm really working on the hiking, and since this was a revisit I figured I could spare the pictures this time around. I made sure I packed an extra water bottle because even though it was cool, the sun was pretty strong on a lot of the trail. Loved doing this one again! I'm ready to do another ten mile trail and then move up to twelve soon, I hope!
I walked the 5.3 mile loop at Lewis and Clark this weekend.  Since I've walked the trail quite a few times and posted about it as well, I don't see too much of a need to rehash it. However it felt REALLY good to get back out on the trail, because it's been far too long. The weather has been nice, and while sometimes it's hard for me to get myself going, I'm always glad I've hiked once I'm out there.

I did want to say that it looks like new mile markers have been added since I last hiked the trail (or I don't remember them), which made me really happy.  I either like a trail to have all mile markers or none at all, as opposed to the first time I hiked the trail there were markers for the first couple miles and then they they petered out. The signs are easy to read and very clear, though I always have a moment of hesitation at the stream bed where the trail splits off. I'm going to go back soon and do the 8.3 trail soon too, just to attempt to get back into some kind of hiking shape.

I'm not dead...

No, really. I'm quite alive.  Stress at work, busy weekends, and unpredictable weather has been keeping me at home these past couple weeks, which is a shame since extra stress at work is the time when hiking really does me the most good. I DID get a run in this Sunday though... well, a "run." Apparently I'm absolutely terrible at running, though I wouldn't mind getting more time to try it out. When not able to get out hiking, I've always enjoyed a nice walk around where I live, and running (with lots of practice) might be a good way to make it a little more aerobic.

I am, also, preparing for a trip to Israel this March. I'll be going with a group called Israel Outdoors, which will include a couple walking and small hiking trips.  The trip only lasts for ten days, but I am absolutely psyched! I definitely want to get out hiking a couple times before the trip just to make sure I'm ready for the sunrise Masada climb! I know you don't do a TON of hiking trips, but I am excited to see a part of the world I've never seen before!

That's all for now. Let's hope I post again before my Israel trip!