Running in Big Basin

This weekend (you’ve guessed it), we went camping again. This time it was with a bunch of friends from church and we went to Big Basin, one of the oldest and biggest state parks in California. We had a whale of a time, it was fantastic! There were 60 in our group, including 33 children! I’ll just say one thing – my friends’ kids are wonderful!! Phew!

Nearly all of us..
Nearly all of us..

Big Basin is seriously beautiful – a massive, enormous forest of redwoods. It’s one of the few parks that allow you to actually camp amongst the ancient groves and the pitches are big. We had a redwood grove all to ourselves – just us, our tent and the trees. And the racoons, obviously! Such an amazing experience! I think of Muir Woods in  Marin which is stunning but RAMMED with people and compare it to the peace and space and tranquility here…we were so lucky!

Little house in the big woods
Little house in the big woods

Actually, setting up camp proved problematic. I’d packed up the car before leaving home. The Husband laid the tent canvas out and went to get the poles…only to find I’d left them at home. All kinds of trouble. Luckily, some friends had a spare 3-man tent so we borrowed that.

‘I don’t think that’s big enough for the airbed’, the Husband said, gloomily.

Oh well…not a problem! I’d forgotten that too!!!!

Whilst the Husband tried to find phone reception to google divorce lawyers, I drove quickly down to the camp store which miraculously sold airbeds without a greedy mark-up. Marriage saved! Let the weekend begin! And let the red wine be opened.

Anyway…running. There is a dearth of online info on running in Big Basin. My favourite trail blogs had nothing on it and there’s no online map on the park website – this was the best page I found, including a low-res map which was useful in preparation. However the Park HQ has great, free maps when you get there. Big Basin has over 80 miles of trails! I barely scratched the surface, but I got in TWO trail runs this weekend, both with friends!

On Saturday, we had gentle 3 mile run for anyone who fancied it. In the end, there were 3 of us – me, my friend Gladys and Agnes, the friend of a friend who had joined our group. LOVELY ladies, gorgeous soft trails and a slightly lacklustre waterfall at the top!

Me and Gladys before we set off...
Me and Gladys before we set off…
Agnes powers through the redwoods

On Sunday, it was me and Agnes who headed out for roughly 4 miles. The Husband, Dude and I had done a little hike the day before and got slightly lost, so we did the same route but in reverse so I could work out where we’d gone wrong. We climbed, (hiking at times as it was so steep), we ran downhill, we talked non-stop! It was brilliant, I was so grateful to have someone to run with as I wouldn’t have run alone, and Agnes was fantastic company! New running buddy, yay!!

Day two…ready to run.
Pretty gorgeous trails here…

When we weren’t running, we hiked round the trees, did a creek-walk, ate a lot, toasted s’mores and one little girl knocked out a tooth and swallowed it! Dramatic weekend. Fabulous!!

Graham Cracker thieving raccoon!
Hey, let’s get a really nice photo of us…
Little boy and big trees
Looking up inside a burned-out redwood

Loved this weekend!

One Comment Add yours

  1. Bean says:

    Looks like a lovely trip! I love the little boy big tree photo. Forgetting tent poles and air mattress sounds like something I would do. My husband does not trust me to pack up the car on my own. We would end up with ten pounds of oreos and no sleeping bags. I am easily distracted… food.

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