I was about 11 miles into my run and most of that had been uphill so I needed to take it easy for a minute and sort of reset myself as I walked up this section. My headphones were blasting a song in my ears when a male voice said something to me from behind me and I nearly fertilized my tights. The man and his wife from the meadow area down below were passing me as I walked up the hill and within a nano second of being shocked I was laughing at the situation as he, the owner of the voice, was apologizing for startling me. We shook that moment off and introduced ourselves to one another. Dan & Lisa from the Quicksilver Running Club turned out to be the friendliest runners I has ever run into. Seriously. We chatted about how far we were running respectively and what races we were training for.
the Quicksilver Running Club
I started to run a minute or two after they left and consequently kept seeing them just ahead of me as they rounded the next corner. This happened two or three times before reaching the top of this monster climb. Its about 3.5 miles from the bottom to the top on the Whitmore Gulch Trail. It has really great views of the Pacific and its awesome coast line. The trail head you come to at the top has a restroom in case you need it. I saw Dan & Lisa up at the top and chatted for another few minutes about upcoming races we were signed up for and then we parted ways. I ran down Skyline Blvd while they dove back into the preserve's trails.
It's roughly 2 miles down the shoulder of Skyline Blvd to get back to where I initially exited Huddart Park and entered Purissima. There is a trail on the west side of the road that follows the road fairly well. You know you are getting close to your Huddart entry point when you pass the firestation on your left. There is a hose out back you can fill your water bottle(s) with. 1/2 mile or less down Skyline and you will see the point at which you exited Huddart and entered Purissima.
Turn left (downhill) down the Summit Springs Trail and in a short distance turn onto Crystal Springs Trail. Coming off of Skyline you will be moving downhill most of the time so if by chance you get mixed up just remember to always choose the downhill path and you will be fine. About 1/3rd of the way down you will turn onto Dean Trail and take that all the way to the parking area. The trail name switches back to Crystal Springs Trail after crossing the Campground Rd and a quarter mile later Crystal Springs Trail splits off on your right. Yes, thats weird. This section of the trail is right next to the parking area. Stay on it until you are dumped out on Huddart Park Rd. Stay on this road passing by the amphitheatre area heading down into the Meadows area. Turn left onto the road that leads down to the Meadows. Split right onto the service road you came in on and pop out onto Greer Rd. Two miles until the end from this exit. Left on Kings Mountain and left on Woodside and your done when you reach Roberts Market. The last 2 miles are flat and easy on the legs for the most part which was a welcome relief for me.