The Thanksgiving-week blizzard is history. Warm(er) temperatures and rain have washed away most of the lower-elevation snow. This is good for runners, but bad for skiers/snowboarders.
I've been looking at the John Wayne Pioneer Trail for the past week. This is the trail that I ended my Run Across Idaho on, and it crosses nearly 300 miles of abandoned railroad grade in Washington. I'm brewing an idea that I might run the entire trail (plus some) during an upcoming summer.
Anyway, while mapping out the route I noticed a section of the trail not too far from me (1 hour drive) that ran along a 7-mile stretch of a lake called Rock Lake. Hadn't heard anything about this, but I'm always up for a new and interesting place to run. And because the snow had melted dramatically over the past couple weeks, I thought it would be safe to give it a try.
|Sadie leading the way along the abandoned railway grade|
that's now the John Wayne Pioneer Trail.
|The lake and trail are spectacular! |
Unbelievable that I've never heard anyone say,
"Hey Scott, you should go run that trail above Rock Lake - it's spectacular!"
|Crossing an old bridge.|
|There were two tunnels along the section I ran.|
|It gets darker before it gets lighter.|
(Thanks iPhone Flashlight app!)
|Sadie above Rock Lake.|
|Sadie giving me a mini heart-attack on the cliff's edge.|
Running through heavy, wet, icy snow (video):
|Another amazing view from an old bridge.|
This bridge challenged my fear of heights.
|A couple miles past rock lake is the picturesque Pine Creek.|
This was at 10 miles and my turnaround point.
Running back along the lake and across a rickety old bridge (video):