I’d really like to be a Californian except…

After spending a week in Michigan Bluff I am reminded how much I love the California foothills.  Single track trails up the kazoo. Gold rush history.  Canyons.  Rivers.  Crazy weather swings: mid 70s sunny weekends with snow/rain/hail in between.  Friendly people.  I’ve thought a lot about whether I could move back to the area where I grew up.  I’d really like to be a Californian except:

Michigan Bluff, California

Michigan Bluff, California

10. I don’t want to lose my ability to drive in snow.  “Craig, I don’t want to be a pain, but my car is slipping in Foresthill.  Will you come pick me up?” “Sure, Victor.”

Snow in Michigan Bluff

Snow in Michigan Bluff

9. I don’t want to lose my ability to run in the rain.  Ok, so it does rain hard when it rains here, but why is it such a big deal to go out and run when it rains here?  I run all the time in the rain in Oregon and seldom think twice about it, but when I get to California and it rains I’m a wimp.

8. I don’t want to run on the WS trail so much that I tire of running Cal St, the canyons, or the river to the finish.

Devil's Thumb and American River

Devils Thumb

7.  I’m not sure I want to live in a state where the people elect actors to run their government.

6. I don’t want it to feel normal to leave ribbons on the trail.  Come on event organizers, let’s take the ribbons down after events.

5. I don’t want to pay $10 to park.  What’s up with all these parking fees at what appear to be random areas?  Driver’s Flat is $10, but the parking area on the road is free?  What am I not understanding?

Me at Robie Pt.  It was warm.

Me at Robie Pt. It was warm.

4. I’d probably eventually realize that those yellow shorts that Matt Keyes wears are indeed ugly.  But right now, I still want those yellow shorts.

3. I don’t want to live in a state that closes it’s parks.  What’s up with canceling races that would pay permit and parking fees?

El Dorado Creek

El Dorado Creek

2.  I like doing full days of trail work.  I’m definitely into the bbq’ing, but not until after I’ve at least worked up a sweat and gotten a blister or two.

1.  I love Oregon, too.


  1. I’m finishing the title for you- “… I’m not awesome enough.”

    Although, I have to admit- not deflagging courses in a timely manner is bad form. And, this whole parks issue sucks too. Right now there’s a ballot measure to make most state park fee areas free, and tack the charge of $18 a year onto car registrations. That’d be a good deal for me. As for the the national forests, I’m o.k. with NorCal jumping in to the Northwest Forest Pass system or something similar. Then again, I’m just a liberal, enviro, socialist as one might say.

    I can’t believe you accepted the shirt and the barbeque without doing a full day’s work!!?? And you call yourself a purist? Disgusting!

  2. 10) I like guestimating(a.k.a rounding up) the distance of my runs and everyone south of the border uses those damn GPS thingies.

    9) If I moved to CA I’d never be a high mileage runner again(see above).

    8) I’m self-conscious about my calves and it’s easier to justify wearing long pants all the time in Oregon.

    7) I like living in the state with the most current cougar collector.

    6) I’m not comfortable enough with my sexuality to be THAT close to San Francisco all the time.

    5) I can’t afford to pay taxes on all the running shoes I buy every year because of all that high mileage I think I’m running(see #10).

    4) There are too many dumbasses down there that still refer to The Big Dance as “Western.”

    3) I once saw someone get 4 hours of trail work signed off down there without even touching a tool.

    2) I like to pretend otherwise but Slow Roast calls the shots and she really likes Oregon.

    1) Living in Oregon will eventually be like living in California anyway(that south to north migration thing doesn’t just apply to adjacent countries).

  3. Craig,

    Thanks for the wonderful pictures.

    I love being a Californian (and I am sure Oregonians love me being a Californian, too!)

    But it’s got to be nice living in Oregon. What’s running in a little rain and snow once in a while when you consider all of the other benefits.

    You all are a lucky bunch. Have a great race season.

    • Not quite SLF…I did all my thinking on my solo runs into El Dorado(and on the long ride to nowhere in the back of the trail work truck)…although after running a full hour slower at HS50 yesterday I’m thinking I should have done a few more El Dorados.

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