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This morning, Lisa and I set off on a hike at Lake Sonoma. The trailhead map showed the trail as “More Difficult” as opposed to “Easiest”. Since the purpose of this hike was to get a good workout, we started what should have been a four mile hike. The weather was warm but I was carrying plenty of water.

The scenery along the trail is what one would expect this time of the year. The hills are very dry, which when combined with the record breaking hot weather, makes the fire danger extreme.

Manzanita grows all along the trail which has a deep red color.

Lurking along the sides of the trail is a nemesis of mine: poison oak. I was unfortunate to have poison oak once many years ago. With the record breaking hot weather we are experiencing in the San Francisco area, we made it just over a mile into our hike when I started to experience the early signs of heat exhaustion. When we stopped, Lisa was also over heating. While sitting in the shade we checked the map and we decided that it would be smarter to turn around than to finish the hike. Now the focus became staying hydrated as well as lowering our body temperature by slowing the pace and taking frequent breaks in the shade. It took us a while but we made it safely back to the trailhead. We were feeling better than where we turned around even though we were both still hot. We both agreed that this hike will go down as one of the worst hikes and proves why you should always be prepared and to be smart when you experience heat distress. We also laughed at our experience and still found happiness in this adventure.