Back in July, Jonathan came to stay with us for a while, partially because the training situation he was in wasn’t working out as well as he’d hoped, and partially because we have all the makings of an awesome summer cross-training camp here. The area is hilly and bike-friendly, and he had one of his bikes shipped out here in the spring, so there’s a lot of good riding out in the country – and we have the Wildwood Trail. Quite steep and quite long, it’s evidently just the thing for running up and down. It works out well for Max and I also. Jonathan’s still learning on the stick shift, so I drive us to the Pittock Mansion, and Max and I have a nice hike down and up the trail, while Jonathan has a (terrible looking, but that’s just me) workout. At any rate – here’s our morning from a few weeks ago.
It started out badly for Maxwell, who wanted to take a bike ride instead of some stupid hike.
But being much bigger and stronger than him, I won.
When we got to the hill, though, it got worse for him – I realized I’d forgotten his leash and collar – but we persevered, rigging up a substitution with Jonathan’s kindly-lent belt and the shoulder strap from Max’s travel crate.
The trail is lovely, snaking down a hillside with huge trees on all sides, although the forest is not very dense. (For Portlanders reading, we went down the north side of the hill from the Pittock, toward the Audubon Society instead of toward Burnside and Washington Park.)
I didn’t adequately catch the feeling of being enveloped in this huge forest… something to work on.
We found some interesting mushrooms …
… which of course I had to photograph for a while …
… and a Massive Slug.
At first Maxwell didn’t notice it …
… but he was as shocked as I was at its size when he finally saw it.
We admired some interesting tree trunks along the trail…
… and had gone further down than we’d meant to before we knew it. It’s a lot easier going down than up, and I spent the return walk encouraging Maxwell rather than taking any photos, at least until we reached the Slug again.
Thankfully Maxwell was more interested in the scents at the base of the slug’s tree than he was in the slug.
We kept at it up the hill, and after getting passed another 10 times (or so it felt) finally made it back to the parking lot.