My trail run adventure: Today was supposed to... - Bridge to 10K

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My trail run adventure

SaskAlliecat profile image
SaskAlliecatGraduate10

Today was supposed to be a 11.3 km run with the first 5k ran steady, then 5k fast then a steady finish but I had a light bright moment lying in bed last night unable to sleep. My fall 10k trail race will not be fast but it will be hilly. I’m at the lake so why not drive over to where the race is and run a portion of the race to get some hills in. I decided to park at the visitor centre, run 2.5 km along the gravel road to the trail head which is the second hill of the race, run/hike it and then either run the horseshoe part of the race backwards or the road back depending on how I felt. My music crashed on me so I figured it was a good idea to run without so I could hear what was going on around me and enjoy the sounds of nature. The 2.5k gravel run was ok, came across a couple of equestrian riders at the trail head but they were heading up a different trail, fortunately. My goal is to run the entire portion of this hill by race day, but it is a long slog uphill, so i’ll have to rethink my training if that is going to happen, incorporating more hills and trails versus the speed work I’ve been doing. I was following the yellow markers which I though was the 10k route but when I got to the lookout point, the yellow markers continued on down the backside of the hill. Well I knew I wanted to get a bit more distance in and thought maybe they changed it up a bit so off I went.. But it just kept going and going and going. When I reached a grove of trees where the trail entered with no cell coverage and knowing I didn’t tell my hubby I was going this far, I decided I better turn around and head back the way I came. I got back to the trailhead marker, turned to run across the meadow towards the dreaded horseshoe but the trail got narrower and narrower and narrower. To continue on, I was going to have tall grass rubbing on both sides of my legs. Those who know me know I have a real disdain for ticks and although I was wearing my beautiful long white basketball socks to allow easy identification of said nasty creepy crawlers traveling up my legs, I figured it wasn’t worth it this early in tick season where they are out in huge quantities. I had run/hiked about 5k of trails by this point so headed back down the road instead. I came across a couple of runners in their car not from the area but who are running the 20k and directed them towards where some of the trails were. I got a look at their map and saw I definitely had gone further than the 10k route and had crossed over onto the 50k route so am very glad I used my common sense and made my way back. It was a great run/hike and reconfirmed that I better utilize these trails more this summer. There are 50k of trails out there (35k or so are marked so far) and nothing is preventing me from exploring other parts of the run (we’ll call it scouting for future years’s runs 😉). Good news: no ticks, and only stepped on 1 stick that I thought was a snake until I actually looked and confirmed it was only a stick!

19 Replies
pinkaardvark profile image
pinkaardvarkGraduate10

I hate ticks, I loathe pulling them out of the cats and usually make my better half do it. Something about them just gives me the heeby jeebies, I have never actually been bitten by one but am more afraid because of all the discussion about lymes disease. I have ended up running through lots of waste high grass lately so really do worry about them. Your very brave running out in the wilds with so many things that can bite and kill you.

SaskAlliecat profile image
SaskAlliecatGraduate10 in reply to pinkaardvark

Brave....stupid, it’s a fine line 😂. Fortunately Lyme disease is incredibly rare and sporadic in my area so the ticks are more of an ewwww factor. The snakes are mostly bull snakes which are non-lethal but can be incredibly huge. I have seen moose bedded down in similar looking habitat further down the lake so sure didn’t want to risk anything being on my own. This was the first time in the last year of running, I actually carried my license on me, just in case, although who knows when someone would find me if something happened but that’s why I try to tell hubby where I’m going. My husband used to be a cross country runner so I’m hoping he’ll run with me a bit this summer 🤞

Bluebirdrunner profile image
BluebirdrunnerGraduate10

Wow Allie, you are tough. What an adventure, glad you turned back when you did...your trails are very wild and isolated!

Take care😊xxx

SaskAlliecat profile image
SaskAlliecatGraduate10 in reply to Bluebirdrunner

I’m so excited that they’ve got permanent markers out now. Once the ticks die down, I can’t wait to explore and explore and explore. I think I have hubby convinced to come with me this summer once school’s out. He used to run cross country but this is extreme cross country 😉. He doesn't enjoy running in town but will enjoy that terrain. I’m sure he’ll be able to keep up just fine which will be frustrating since i’ve been running for how long and he hasn’t consistently run except with what he does in Phys Ed. He is one of those teachers though that participates and loves to compete against the kids so he’s naturally quite athletic.

runswithdogs profile image
runswithdogsGraduate10

Bah. Ticks. They're everywhere now. Sounds like you got a good run in though.

SaskAlliecat profile image
SaskAlliecatGraduate10 in reply to runswithdogs

Unfortunately they are. I pick them off dogs all day at work and can now without being squeamish but still hate the thought of one crawling on me and heaven forbid attaching 😖. There’s lots of areas I can explore without long grass for now until the numbers die down.

Lavender1962 profile image
Lavender1962Graduate10

Great pictures! I love the scenery. You are indeed brave!

SaskAlliecat profile image
SaskAlliecatGraduate10 in reply to Lavender1962

Thanks Lavender. It really is quite a rustic beauty. It was my hope to participate in this brand new local trail race that got me back to running after my hysterectomy a few years ago.

FlickM3 profile image
FlickM3Graduate10

What a run, and what wonderful scenery. You are one tough woman!

SaskAlliecat profile image
SaskAlliecatGraduate10 in reply to FlickM3

Thanks Flick. It was a lot of fun, although incredibly hard. I can't wait to do it again 😂

Mummycav profile image
MummycavModerator

You are one brave girl Sask, there’s alsorts out there but you’re not fazed by then one bit are you??!! Sounds wonderful to be out in the wild like that, glad you’re back safe & sound though & managed to get back on the right track...you really are at one with nature out there!!! 💪🏻🏃🏼‍♀️

SaskAlliecat profile image
SaskAlliecatGraduate10 in reply to Mummycav

It's quite a neat trail system the race organizers created. It follows game trails so most criss-cross the sides of hills and are skinny, skinny. The top picture with the thin line on the bottom of it is one of the trails I was following. It makes for slow going which is A-ok with me. The tough part is on race day when you get behind slower runners and try to find a spot to pass, it can get a little freaky. You have to pick and choose where to get off trail. Lots of cacti which really hurt when you kick them.

Mummycav profile image
MummycavModerator in reply to SaskAlliecat

Sounds fab but scary too, teetering on the edge while trying to pass...eek! Cacti are menacing aren’t they! Keep those socks pulled right up!!! 💪🏻💪🏻💪🏻

Fishypieface profile image
FishypiefaceGraduate10

Wow that looks amazing - you are so fit! I would have to walk most of that for sure! Glad the stick was a stick :)

SaskAlliecat profile image
SaskAlliecatGraduate10 in reply to Fishypieface

Thanks FPF 😊. It'll be a while before I can run that whole hill, but fingers crossed, with a lot of training, it might just happen. It was a huge relief that the stick was just a stick 😰

Decker profile image
DeckerGraduate10

Wow Sask, I did not know there were cacti in your neck of the woods. Looks like some great terrain. Have not come across any snakes yet I am happy to say! You have to drive a couple of hours north from here for that. Careful going! I alway bring my ID with me in case I pass out in the cemetery they don’t assume I am a client 😁

SaskAlliecat profile image
SaskAlliecatGraduate10 in reply to Decker

The amount of cacti around here is insane! You have to watch your step when off roading, that’s for sure. I kicked a cactus a couple times last year while running and had to stop, pull off my shoes and socks to pick out the cacti spines. It’s amazing how much they hurt. So far so good this year 🤞. I duct taped my shoe tops last year for my race. Not sure if i’ll need to this year.

Still running the cemeteries are you?

Decker profile image
DeckerGraduate10 in reply to SaskAlliecat

Wow, its a whole different kind of running prep you need to include for your local hazards! Duct tape is good for so many things. 🙂

Yes, the old cemetery is still my go-to for the short runs as it is right next door and where I can use the loops to add or shorten runs as needed. Missed my long group run yesterday though as we had a conflict with my daughter’s Soccer photo day.

SaskAlliecat profile image
SaskAlliecatGraduate10 in reply to Decker

Nice to have an Old Faithful route to fall back on. Oh how far you’ve come since the first days of cemetery running 😄. I was in the doghouse last week. I missed my son’s Soccer Team photo because I went for a run. Oops. I took him for ice cream after, I think all is forgiven 🤞

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