Port Gamble Trails. Gate 4. Stottlemeyer Road. I met my husband for a 6 mile run through the woods. This was his lunch hour and is often the only time I see him on too many days. The sun was shining and the weather was warm for a March day. We set out on an out and back course, staying mostly on the single track trails that meander through the forest, creating short cuts between the many logging roads. We both felt good and were keeping our pace easy and enjoying the time together. Cobwebs were the only thing we encountered in our path, and we took turns leading the way and thereby clearing them for eachother.
On our way back to the car, however, things started getting interesting as the wind began to pick up and the roar of it through the trees became louder and louder. We began to get battered with pine and fir needles, then pine cones and branches began flying about, landing all around us. We picked up our pace and as we headed through the final trail to the parking lot, we heard whole trees creaking and crashing down. I couldn't help myself and sprinted out ahead of my husband, yelling, "Auntie Em! Auntie Em!", which gave him a chuckle, 'cause really, where are you safe? I had the feelling that maybe a witch on a bicycle might come flying by at any moment. And where was Toto? You don't need a tornado to do a lot of damage in the middle of a forest, just a really good wind storm.
At the car we witnessed numerous trees crashing down in the woods next to the dirt parking lot, and as we drove up Stottlemeyer Road to the traffic light at Bond Road, the 100+feet tall evergreens were swaying dangerously over the road, then a small tree crashed in the road just ahead of us, blocking our lane. We went around it and continued to dodge the numerous large branches in the road, only to come upon another large tree, this time blocking the entire road and tangled up in the power lines as well. Having no choice, we hung a u-turn and headed back through the swaying trees and maze of fallen branches to the other end of Stottlemeyer. Whew! We didn't see that coming at all. I didn't feel safe until I was inside my house, where the power was out for many hours that afternoon. What a wild afternoon jaunt. Jeez.