P-22

Had a really nice run, that’s two in a row, with the Griffith Park group. This one was about 4 miles. We took a pretty much vertical attack to the hills, leading up more feeder trails I’ve never been on, with all kinds of great views. Saw several deer flushed out by some dogs on the facing hills. Just to get it out of the way, no, we did not see the mountain lion that has settled in Griffith Park. (For LA Times piece, “P-22, a mountain lion from further west in the Santa Monica Mountains, navigated across the 405 and 101 freeways and now lives in Griffith Park. Full story“)

We hiked to warm up, then ran sections of the trail until it degraded at one point into a sandy mush that did not allow for running. The views were stunning. In the first half mile we had climbed from 500 ft at the parking lot, to 1000 ft. And by the time we reached the lookout we were at about 1600 ft. Then we headed up to the lookout that overlooks the Griffith Park Observatory, taking an easy run to the it’s base followed by another murderous attack up the slope. It was terrific.

It was great to run back to back runs with the group. While I really suffered at one point yesterday, today was just challenging. I decided these runs were not going to get any easier if I just did them weekly, and shouldn’t let one difficult run get in the way. I got some further pointers about my right leg which is kind of flapping around when the left leg is pushing off. Excellent observations I would never have on my own. So trying to keep that tucked in, mindful that altering stride is a tricky business. And there was idle chatter back in the parking lot, about, among other things, Paul Ryan and P-22, which delights.

[Edit: another detailed story on P-22, and why lions would cross freeways to stake out new territory. Hint: Turns out the leading cause of death for a mountain lion is another mountain lion.]

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