15 March 2009

To Hell and Back

My annoyance with the Pullman snow reached a tipping point and my itching for a trail run was gaining unhealthy momentum (no trail run since Sept) so Sadie and I made our first road trip of the season to get a good, snowless trail run in.

There was one small catch: the trail was in Hell and we had to sell our soles to run it.

I love running. And this run in Hells Canyon is why I run. I know I say that often but running has become a part of me over the past couple years and runs like this one are exactly why I do it. The travel, the solitude, the landscape, the mental and physical challenge. And Sadie, of course. This was Sadie's longest run ever: 31 miles. Good girl.

My mind and legs are getting into shape.

Trailhead marker -- our goal was to reach
Sheep Creek and then turn around

Entering Hells Canyon by foot

Sadie's most at home when she's on a trail

Several cliffs with no room for error

VIDEO: The strong gusts of wind made me a
little nervous on a few of the ledges

I think Sadie loves the trail for the same reasons I do

Historic ranches along the way

The trail brought us down by the river
several times for Sadie to take a dip and sip
(which was good because I ended up having
to drink the extra water I carried for her)

Sadie contemplating the meaning of her life near Suicide Point
(legend has it that two forbidden lovers
heaved themselves from this cliff)

A view of Suicide Point's 400 ft vertical drop

Ranch along the river

I wish I were a poet

Turnaround point

Heading back home through golden-yellow meadows

Views like this make me happy to be alive

Keep running!


08 March 2009

Changing Weather

Out for an early, cold, windy,
long Saturday morning run

One of the great things about living in
a small town is that it's easy to get out of town
with your own two feet...and the pavement
lasts for only so long

Sadie is down in the creek somewhere

Frozen muddy roads through winter wheat

Sadie seeking shelter from the bitterly strong win

Following a railroad track further out of town.
Strong winds are blowing in snow clouds fast.

Found a road that lead me exactly
where I wanted to go: someplace new

Ended up on an Idaho highway.
"Good girl, Sadie. Let's turn
around and go home."

Sometimes the road cuts sharply down over the horizon and you
can't see where it leads. But you can smell the beauty of the world
and you've been down many roads before and trust that this one will
take you somewhere, too.