Thursday, April 30, 2009

Stevens Trail

After 5 days of no exercise I was itching to get out on the trail. I'm not running yet so Pat and I decided to take our dog Yuba to the Stevens Trail in Colfax, about 20 minutes from Nevada City. We got the girls to daycare, made a stop at Starbucks then made the drive to the trailhead.

California poppies

This is the perfect time of year to hike this trail. April and May provide the best time to view the many different types of wildflowers. I don't know all their names but they are definitely plentiful.

Iowa Hill Bridge

The trail was built by Truman Allen Stevens shortly after he arrived in California in 1859. He operated a ranch in Iowa Hill and a livery stable in Colfax so he built the trail and a self-propelled cable car to transport miners and animals across the North Fork of the American River, and charged a toll. (Info courtesy of American River Canyon Hikes by Ferris, Lynch, and Toner, which is a wonderful book for people looking for a thorough guide to the trails in the Auburn State Recreation Area.)

The trail is almost 4 miles down to the river and doesn't have a single switchback in it. It follows the contour lines on a moderate grade and always travels upstream. I don't know of another single trail that does that.

Perfect lunch spot

After enjoying a leisurely lunch beside the river (and watching the antics of a heron on the opposite bank), we started back up the trail. This is a popular trail so I wasn't surprised to see some folks as we started back. Our pace down was quite leisurely but Pat set a stronger pace on the return and we both felt like we got a decent workout.

This was a stop we made at a cute waterfall that I'm sure will be dry by mid-summer. This trail is south-facing and I'm sure very hot in the summer.

So Mom, whaddya think?


Anonymous said...

Wow, Awesome.!!!!! It will even get better.
Your day sounds wonderful. What a pretty place. Give the girls a hug and kiss from Nana and Papa.
Love, Mom

Gretchen said...

Oh, I haven't been to that trail for years--I almost forgot about it! Thanks for the reminder. It looks awesome. I'll have to get down there soon!

Catherine said...

Gretchen, I forget about it too sometimes. Would love to be able to meet you there and do a run sometime.

Robert Fuller said...

Cute and perky

Anonymous said...

You look fabulos. Excited to see you next week.
Lone, Cuz