Trail Monster Running

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Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Snow and Hills

I live next to a hill. Not a crazy big one, but a pretty good sized one. Over the past few days I've explored a few different ways to run up and down it.


I had originally hoped to get out on the local snowmobile trails, but I was running out of time so I opted for a short road loop. I usually run this in 40-45 minutes and that's about all the time I had for running today. 3 miles up, than about 2.5 down. I wasn't pushing the pace, just going nice and comfortable on the way up and cruising on the way down.

time: 42:42
distance: 5.6 miles
pace: 7:38


Again my actual run differed from what I had planned, no Twin Brook for me, for about the 6th week in a row. I did manage to get out for a run after work on the snowy roads around home. I knew that with the recent snow there wasn't much chance of recent traffic on the snowmobile trails, and given the road conditions I didn't want to put myself amongst traffic. So I picked a relatively flat out and back on very quiet roads, of course the quiet roads were also the ones that had received the least attention from snow plows so there was a low of new snow on the roads and it was still coming down. On the way back I was getting bored of the flatness so I did a few repeats up a short road that goes about halfway up Blackstrap Hill. The conditions didn't lend themselves to any kind of quick running but the snow added a little extra difficulty to make the run more of a workout. The first three miles don't look flat on the profile, but they are.

time: 44:08
distance: 5.5 miles
pace: 8:01


I was anxious to get out on the trails, assuming that there would have been snowmobile traffic since the yesterdays snow. My route to the trails included 1 mile clear road, 1 mile of road with about 1" of snow and slush, then 1/4 mile of unplowed dirt road, all uphill. Once I hit the trails it was a short climb to the top of Leighton Hill and then a steep descent down the Three Bitches which is a lot of fun in soft snow. There had been a few snowmobiles out recently but now enough to make the trails well packed. I plodded along a flat stretch of powerlines for a while looking for my turn uphill which seemed to take forever to arrive, this was my first time running this route in the dark and on snow covered trails so everything looked different. Just as I was about to give up and turn back I found the turn that headed uphill through the treefarm. This trail is tough in the best of conditions but in 16" of snow with only one pass from a snowmobile it's damn slow going.

time: 1:10:17
distance: 7.36 miles
pace: 9:33

It's nice living at the bottom of a hill. All my runs have an easy finish.


Yak Hunter said...

Challenge for the future is to use elevation and your garmin to make the graph spell out one simple word. You'd have to be in the right mood but I'll race you to do this Ian.
The snow's clear here at last (for now) and I'm so glad. We are light weights!

middle.professor said...

Where are your snowshoes? Why not run to the trail carrying snowshoes, strap them on at the trail and have fun in the pow? Who needs snomo trails?