On Saturday I met my regular running partner Anne and her husband John and headed off to the start of a 20 mile route on the AT. We picked up our friend Megan at what would be our turnaround and dropped a jug of water in her car. We got to the start which is along a creek. We had a lot of rain earlier this week so the water was quite noisy. It was a beautiful sound.
The trail starts with a nice, long climb. I think it is about a mile and a half long and about 800 feet of gain. It’s not crazy but it’s definitely not a good runnable start. It was quite chilly and we were waiting for the warm up we were promised. Once we got to the top the rest of the route was on the ridge. It was rocky, but for the most part, runnable. Though it was chilly, the sun was out in full force. It was a pretty morning. I didn’t take any pictures but my friend Megan got this one of me at a vista.
John turned around about 6 miles in and Megan left us at the hallway point. After Anne topped off her water we started on the return trip. It was uneventful, which means no one fell. We weren’t in a hurry and just took our time. In the last hour it finally warmed up. I ditched my gloves, Buff, half-zip and sleeves in quick succession. I descended the mountain and met back up with John. It felt good to get that 20 miler under my belt.
I got home and cleaned up and then made an easy, delicious lunch: chickpea outlet with vegan mozzarella, green onions, jalapenos, hemp seeds and Sriracha. I did manage to take a picture of it!
This morning rolled around and I was tired. I didn’t want to run. I got dressed and realized it was raining. I really didn’t want to run. My friend Ethan bailed on the first few miles of the run. I almost got back in bed. But I didn’t.
I started a few minutes late and just didn’t feel very well at first. The power line climb that comes during mile 2 felt very hard and I had to walk a little bit – not much but enough to irritate me. I cut the 5 miles loop short at 4.5 so I could get back to the start and meeting everyone for the 7 mile loop. By then Ethan, Ashleigh, Dom and Jeremy had showed up and the rain started to pick up.
It was colder on the second loop but I felt much better. I “ran” (slogged was more like it) up the power lines and felt great throughout. I was pleased.
After the run I went to church and then to the hospital to visit my nephew. He has been in the hospital since Wednesday due to complications from a heart condition . Things are very serious now but are looking up. You can learn more here.