Top O' the Afternoon to Ya from Pine Valley, CA!
Pine Valley, California
Top O' the Afternoon to Ya from Pine Valley, CA!
Miles Completed: 2061.7
Miles to San Diego: 38.3
Avg Miles/Day: 3.5
Marathons Completed: 78.7
Longest Run Streak: 20 Days
Shoes: Skora Fit/Skora Tempo
Playlist Favs: Eagles Greatest Hits, Chicago's Greatest Hits
Guest Runners: Molly Donovan
Bible Verse of the Day: "And the King will say, 'I tell you the truth, when you did it to one of the least of these my brothers and sisters, you were doing it to me!'" - Matthew 25:40 (NLT)
Run Reflections: Hello again from the virtual road. Today I am passing through Pine Valley, CA. I'm still heading west on I-8 but have left the desert and am now heading across a mountain range towards San Diego and the Pacific Ocean. As you'll see from the post picture and photo album, the scenery certainly has changed. It's hard to believe that it can change so much in such as short distance and that there are only 38.3 miles left!
On the local running front, I've had a good week of running and got a chance to run a couple of times with Molly before she heads back to UF next week for her senior year. We had planned a destination run this morning to Finns, a local food truck/coffee shop adjacent to a surf shop on the beach, but had to cut it short due to heat/humdity. Fortunately Jody came and got us so we could enjoy our late breakfast - Acai bowl and foo-foo coffee for her and a local craft IPA for me :-) OK, on with the post. The majority of the info this week is from wikipedia.
Pine Valley, CA: Pine Valley is a small community located in the Cuyamaca Mountains in southeast San Diego County. The city is named for the locally unique strand of Jeffrey pine (tree) found along Pine Valley Creek, a seasonal drainage in the foothills of the Laguna Mountains. Pine Valley is 3,376 feet above sea level. I've included a picture of a Jeffrey pine in the photo album as well as "Welcome to Pine Valley" road sign.
The Cuyamaca Mountains, locally known as the Cuyamacas (go figure), is a mountain range that runs roughly northwest to southeast in the lower part of CA. It is directly adjacent to the Laguna Mountains to the east. Most of the range consists of extensive oak forest and chaparral (vegetation consisting chiefly of tangled shrubs and thorny bushes), interspersed with pine forests and lush riparian (bank of a river) zones, featuring year round creeks and waterfalls. The San Diego and Sweetwater Rivers both have their headwaters in these mountains, which flow over 50 miles to the ocean. The pine forests were extensively damaged by the 2003 Cedar fire, along with many large areas of chaparral and oak woodland, but the area has since experienced slow and steady re-growth. I've included a picture of both the Cuyamacas and the Laguna Mountains in the photo album.
One of the interesting historical things about the Cuyamacas is that gold was discovered there in 1870 and the mountains were a part of the famous CA gold rush. Many small towns and encampments sprang up in this area over the years to support the miners. Most of the mines and towns have been long closed but the nearby town of Julian celebrates its mining history with an annual festival in April each year called Gold Rush Days. Activities at the festival include mining and gun-fighting re-enactments, gold panning, candle dipping and a tomahawk throw. Also, the Eagle-High Peak Mine (what a great name), although no longer productive, is now a museum and gives daily tours.
In addition to the museum and Gold Rush festival, there are a variety of other things to do in the Cuyamacas including family activities, alone time or a little of both. The Cuyamaca lake provides a family-friendly place to camp, fish and swim or you can hike or bike on a number of different trails of all experience levels - beginner to advanced - that will bring you face to face with the beautiful scenery and views and the local wildlife (hopefully not too close).
I have to say that, in developing this post, I was again struck by the fact that each of the communities that I have passed through, small or large, on this virtual run has their own history, identity and personality. Those that know me know that I am a big fan of James Michener's book Centennial (and the TV mini-series from the late 1970's). The search for gold was a consistent theme/influence in the book which described how the west was developed. Seeing the pictures of these mountains and reading about the Julian Gold Rush festival reminded me of a story from Centennial where the early main characters Pasquinel (played by Robert Conrad) and Alexander McKeag (played by Richard Chamberlin) re-connect again after many years at a western meet-up called the Rendevous.
Anyway, thanks for investing the time to read this post, I hope you enjoyed it. If things continue as planned, my next post will hopefully be from San Diego and will be followed with a final wrap-up post from a section of San Diego called Ocean Beach on the Pacific Ocean.
Have a great week!