Now Wildwood Trail is 31 miles long, and an experienced hiker might be able to cover it in a day but I sure as hell can't. But having lived in Portland for seven years previously, and never having actually walked the thing before, I suddenly got a notion to go out there and have a look. So I got on the MAX at about 1:30pm, and at 1:45 I found myself at the sign marking the beginning of the trail, with the zoo in back of me and the Vietnam Veterans Memorial just over my left shoulder.
I just walked the first mile today, down to the archery range and back. I made up my mind to stick to the Wildwood Trail proper, which twists and turns like crazy. It was 20 minutes at a leisurely pace going out, longer going back because I took a wrong turn near the beginning of the trail and found myself facing the visitors' center instead of the zoo. (I guess it's logical that if you do an out-and-back course, it's the beginning part that you'll have the most time to forget.) But I was back at the starting point in 1 hour flat, and found myself feeling great and looking forward to the next excursion.
I'm thinking if I do this regularly, I can add maybe a mile or so each week, and see how it goes.