Monday, March 2, 2009

The road to nowhere...

Alternate (non pc title) "Triple poo Twenty Two!"

Saturday's long run was a 22 miler and I was until the night before unsure of where to run, I toyed with the idea of running the race route for next weekends 50k but to be honest I was unsure of the exact route, I could have gone back to revisit Boney Mountain but the drive was a bit too far and given that I expected to be out on the trails for four to four and half hours I wanted to minimize travel time.

I decided in the end to head back to Cheeseboro Canyon and run a trail that was new to me. I had seen it marked on the map but had never been along (or should I say up, up, up, down, up, up, up) it and figured that this was as good a weekend as any.

The whole household has been under the weather with cold, coughs, sore throats and the like circulating about in a maelstrom of sneezes, snorts and coughs! My immune system finally gave up the fight and I had a sore throat (my Achilles heel in the cold/cough environment) and so loaded up with a pocket full of Ricola I set off.

The first five miles clicked of easily enough, it was warming up fast and I stripped off a layer, the forecast had said 45f at 7:00am climbing to 67f at midday. I hit the junction that would take me onto the new trail; and an easy trail t’was not, switchback, climb switchback, climb, finally I topped out and discovered that I needed to drop into the next valley and climb up over the next ridgeline, I hate losing elevation but I was forced down into the valley floor and back up the other side, I reached the high point and shot some bad video for RunCastTV.

Find more videos like this on RuncastTV

I headed back onto the trail and continued down the backside, something was not feeling right directionwise and I was struggling to visualize how I was going to get to the trail that I needed to reach and that I had seen from the high point, a short while later I hit a gate which was liberally covered in “DO NOT ENTER” signs, I tried to see if there was a workaround…there wasn’t! And so with 9 miles covered I about faced and headed back the way I came…poo!

On the way back I met a mountain biker who was riding up and I asked if he knew the route; he didn’t but he figured he would ride to the top to enjoy the decent, we parted company and I set of back the way I had come. I reached the junction and backtracked to a point where I could pick up another section of the trail; 14 miles covered, 8 to go. I made my up to the next high point and who should I see coming down the hill, yep the mountain biker that I had spoken to earlier, turns out from where I had taken the video the trail continuation point was about 20 yards away…hmm double poo! Oh well there’s always next time.

At this point around 16-17 miles my throat was pretty sore and I was starting to feel a bit heavy legged, Thursday’s double of 18 miles was starting to take its toll. I reached the top and started on the long 4 mile downhill which couldn’t have come too soon. I cruised down the hill and hit to bottom where the trail flattened out, at this point the sun was out and it was getting pretty warm and I was running a little low on fluids. Due to the deviated direction my mileage was a bit short of where I thought it would be based on where I was on the trail and I was planning in my mind where I could add the extra mile or so, as I crested another ridgeline I bumped into some friends of mine who were hiking, of all the trails in all the parks in all the world…isn’t that a line from a movie? Anyway they were heading back to their car, they’d run out of water, did I mention it was getting warm, and one of them was cramping, I gave them a couple of S-Caps and they polished off one of my bottles. We parted company heading in opposite directions. I reached the parking lot with just over 20.5 miles on my Forerunner, so I ditched my vest refilled a bottle and headed back out to cover a mile or so out and back. After three quarters of a mile I turned around and headed back, to the car walking the last quarter mile for the 22 miles or so that I needed. I was pretty much tapped out at this point, the sun was high in the sky and the theremometer in the car said 85f! Holy smokes no wonder I wasn’t feeling so great!

So in conclusion not the best of runs; geographical embarrassment, sore throat, bit of sun; resulting in my first farmers tan line…across my forehead! But on the upside another 20+ miler under my belt, this is the first of six, five more remain over the next month leading up to LD50.

On Sunday my cold blossomed in full, runny nose, sore throat, body aches…sick; triple poo! A crazy early night (I think I was in bed by 9:30pm last night) and lots of drugs seem to be helping.

No Garmin info as yet; my PC blew up last week but I did take some photos of the views, which were awesome they're here.


  1. Maybe a craptastic run, but you did not surrender. Well done!

  2. Feel better soon! Too bad you missed your trail only by a little bit, but you got it done! My face was a bit red after yesterday's run, but I assure you, it's not a tan... it's wind burn from the cold wind from the north lol.

  3. I hope you feel better. I'm dealing with a cold myself. Not fun at all.

  4. NICE shirt!! LOL!!

    Love the video and I am totally jealous of all of those trails. You have hit the jackpot for an ultra runner.

    hope you are feeling tons better already.

  5. you are hardcore!! a 22 mile trail run sounds insane to me, especially when you're not feeling so well and it was quite warm out! Nice work on getting it done!!

  6. Man, you have great places to run. Although 85 degrees is a bit warm for a long run!

    I hope you feel better soon!

  7. Hee, those mountain bikers have saved me a few times! Great switch backs; love them!

    Feel better.

  8. Geez, even with the Garmin, I hate taking off running when I don't know exactly where I'm going, how far it is, and how long I think it'll take me to finish it...

  9. What a great view and, of course, quite an interesting adventure. Hope you're feeling better!

  10. No picture of the Farmers' Tan?

    Nice video. You have hit the Jackpot.

  11. Feel better. I just came off of a 10 day antibiotic/chest thingy.

    The "Do Not Enter" signs would have freaked me out.

  12. I was able to get the Nutrition Podcast downloaded from iTunes.
    Good Stuff for sure.

    I look forward to listening to more.

  13. At least you didn't give in. Good for you :)


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