Work, Hike and Play
We all know that the work – life balance can often tilt more in the direction of work. When part of my work team asked me to lead them on a hike one weekend I was thrilled. I have always enjoyed being outdoors and being able to take people out into nature so they can see what I enjoy excites me! The best part is watching the confidence glow from someone who did not think they could do it. Awwww the power of the outdoors.
The Start of the Day
I decided to make our first hike a somewhat shorter hike of 3.4 miles. Two girls from my front office, Lindsey and Brittany met at my house at 7 a.m. and then we traveled to Daly Ranch in Escondido to start our adventure. https://www.escondido.org/daley-ranch.aspx We met up with Yolanda and started promptly at 7:30 am. The morning was cool and carried the crispness one feels in the beginning of fall. My husband was teasing me stating I was like a school teacher because I had packed tangerines and protein bars for each of us. I don’t know about you but I never had a school teacher pack me a bag of goodies!
The First Mile
Our first mile was a gradual uphill climb. We took it nice and slow and stopped when I could hear the breathing of the team sounding labored. It wasn’t about finishing our hike in record time, it was about showing people they had it in them to be out on the trail. We would stop and peer out over North County as the cloud cover slowly began to burn off. Soon the cool morning air would be thickening with the heat of the day as the sun peeked through the clouds.
As we reached the peak, there was a park bench that provided a view looking out over Lake Dixon and the surrounding rolling hills. Brittany took the opportunity to take a break and enjoy the view from a different angle!
Daly Ranch House is a beautiful Ranch House that has a surrounding picnic area. There is an old barn that seems to draw me in everytime I see it like an old friend. We took our packs off and enjoyed some tangelos and protein bars while we shared stories of younger days. There was something nice about being away from work with these ladies. Each has a story of their own and courage and perseverance that is inspiring to witness.
The Last Mile
Although Daly Ranch has miles of trails, the final trail back to the dirt parking lot is actually a paved road that leads up to the Ranch House itself. You have the option of returning on the original path we came up but we took the ranger’s road down.
The trees and surrounding landscape are beautiful and create a nice easy stroll back to the cars. There are several small trails that branch off in each direction from the ranger’s road that allow you the opportunity to add in a few more miles before returning home.
An Unexpected Surprise
As we approached the parking lot we were all talking about how good a nice cold beer would taste. Yolanda opens up her back door and pulls out a makeshift ice chest. What do you think was in it? Gotta love that lady!!!!
Remember to Make Time to Play
It is so easy to get caught up in the daily routines of wake, work, eat, sleep. Many say they don’t have the time to do anything but the fact is, you have to make it. Just like you have to make time to go grocery shopping, get into a doctor’s appointment or go to that dreaded party. You have to make time for fun. Remember that the good times you share with family and friends are memories that will not soon be forgotten.
If you are looking for local hikes in your area my favorite app is All Trails. You can use the free version or upgrade to Pro. Now get out there and play!