The day dawned innocently enough. We woke up at a reasonable hour and though it was foggy outside, we could still see each other over the fog. Calls were made to sync up with Sangeetha and Rocky puppy. She had been up for a while waiting for us and had actually got a spread ready for lunch. Aah, promising start indeed. The goal was to hike 7.2 miles in the Henry Coe State Park. Please keep this line in mind dear reader.
So we set off with lunch and dogs packed, into the fog (no sun in sight). We took the exit and parked to pick up a map at the entrance. Sadly in our fog induced confusion we had ended up at the Harvey Bear Park (where we have hiked in the past). While Mater spent anxious moments awaiting K’s return from the map pick-up zone, we people watched and were feeling superior since this seemed like a relatively easy and flat trail. Oh how the mighty are to fall.
We collectively scratched our heads ( a recurring theme over the day), and tried to google the park entrance (in the middle of nowhere) on Sangeetha’s blackberry. We then had a stroke of genius, we had seen the park signs at one of the nearby exits. So we carried on driving. Well the driving continued for another hour and up 15 miles to get to Henry Coe State Park. The climb was arduous and I kept up the good cheer saying I felt it in my bones that this was to be a good hike. Only later did I realize I was just plain cold thanks to the snow along the way. Yes indeedy, there was snow near the top.
We finally parked and ventured to the visitors center, where right of the bat we realized on their giant map, we were the 15 miles uphill + some 5 miles away from where we set out to be. The entrance we were hoping to use was closer to our original park site. I bravely walked into the visitor center to see if they had any trails we could conquer. Let us now refocus on the line “Henry Coe State Park”, “State Park”, yes yes, they do not allow the canines in the state parks. So I spend the next 30 minutes talking to the apologetic volunteers at the visitor center about how this was a Supreme Court mandated law. While I tried to tear myself away from the by now remorseful volunteers, Mater spent an anxious 30 minutes, probably imagining dire ways in which I was coochie cooing with another dog.
He did say we could walk around the parking lot and a 1 mile loop to the parking lot at the top. So that is what we did, we walked the 0.5 mile in snow to a clearing and then trudged back after enjoying the vistas at the end. We then rode out looking for the elusive Coyote Creek Park, that K and I had seen many times in the past, but on that particular day failed to remember the way to. Sangeetha’s Lexus(GPS) obliged and faithfully dropped us off at the Coyote Creek Golf Course and then would not let us exit the course. It kept making protestations and asking us to take a U-turn on the freeway. All valid suggestions, but not when we were hike deprived. Finally after many false warnings we made it to what we thought and I vehemently claimed was the park I had seen a hundred times. We parked and started walking on what can only be described as a walking path. We walked on and on till we crossed the actual park entrance I had seen a 100 times as we drove by. We walked on demolishing miles, convinced we had walked atleast 3 mile when a mile marker gently reminded us that we had but walked 1.5 miles. Oh well, we decided to turn back towards the car and the food. The walk back was much faster, our pace quickened by the promise of food. Alas, when we reached the car and realized we were parked by the side of the expressway and would have to walk a distance to find a bench, we dispelled all ideas of a picnic lunch and drove on back home. Lunch was had and dogs napped, truly tired from all the deliberations and driving. And that brings us to the end of the hike that was not meant to be.
Barely Any distance walked
Ample family time