Somewhere only we know
“I walked across an empty land
I knew the pathway like the back of my hand
I felt the earth beneath my feet
Sat by the river and it made me complete”
That song always makes me think of the trail, the rutted roads and winding paths that seem so familiar. Sometimes you forget how special they are.
I had been off the trail for a while and I knew I needed to hike. I picked one of my favorite places, one of the spots I know like the back of my hand, the quiet grasslands of Morgan Territory. I’m not sure what makes it so special, I think it is the solitude, a walk for miles and maybe you see one other person, the sound of the wind in the tree branches, the sight of clouds casting shadows on the grass or maybe it is just those quiet moments when your whole world is the sound of your breath and your steps on the path.
I hadn’t been to Morgan Territory in almost a year and I picked my favorite loops, the lush green colors of Coyote Trail that transform into the vast grasslands of Stone Corral before joining the live oaks lining Volvon Trail. And just like in the song I didn’t need a map, I did know the path.
It’s kind of funny how I can remember certain points on the trail better than any trail marker. The clearing at the end of descent filled with drooping branches. A small gap in the trial cut by a stream you have to jump across. A tree with outstretched branches that looks more like a menacing spider than an oak. Sights I only see once or twice a year but so familiar and so unforgettable.
And too soon my hike was ending to familiar vistas with Mount Diablo looming in the distance above green pastures. From season to season the colors may change The skies may darken but my memories are still strong of this place I know.