I anticipated some pretty tough conditions on Saturday's run especially after all the rain and warm weather. My plan was to attempt Ian's Beautiful loop (though I wasn't entirely sure where the cut back was from the power lines)
I knew 15 miles on soft wet trails would probably be a bit much for me in this stage of my training and I suspected I might find more standing water than I wanted, but no harm in trying and if need be I could cut the run short.
The early start worked quite well through the park and all the way to the pit. Though I did happen across some very wet areas and I did post hole occasional, I was able to bypass most of the deep water.
The icy areas were pretty slippery so I was glad I wore my screw shoes as the extra traction felt great. Unlike last weekend, I dressed just about right and did not overheat at all.
Things changed a bit once I reached the open field and the power lines. No divining rod was needed as hidden rivers were easily exposed each time the thin melting top crust suddenly gave way. It was a well drillers dream and a post holing nightmare.
There was no way of telling how strong the ice covered areas of the trail were until I fully committed the weight on each foot. At depths of as much as 1-2 feet, the going was pretty slow and my feet were getting darn cold.
After crossing route 9, I decided to try and move to higher elevation. though there was a less traveled trail which was much softer, post holing without water would be much more comfortable than this.
This worked pretty good until I happened across an area that was completely flooded. I didn't want to turn around and deal with the crap I just went though and I remember passing a snowmobile trail heading into the woods.
I opted to go back and try it out. I thought perhaps it might be a way around the newly formed lake. The further I followed it, the less prominent the trail was and finally I found myself at the end of a long dirt driveway at someones house.
My only real choice at this point was to follow the drive back to the road which ended up being route 9. I followed 9 up to Brown road and figured I could link back up with the trail that way.
Funny how timing can be as I reached the trail crossing at Brown road exactly when the trail monster group was crossing. We talked for a few, I warned them of the water problems on the power lines and we said our good byes.
At this point I was a bit past nine miles on my garmen and I figured about three miles back to Bradbury. My body was glad to crest the last part of the hill two miles later and enjoyed the one mile down hill finish.
The fact that I still felt pretty good after 12 miles was uplifting and I found myself wishing I had been able to do the whole 15 mile loop. Considering how much the power lines slowed me down, I was fairly happy with my overall pace. Little did I know that this would not be my last trip to Bradbury this weekend.
Sunday morning I planned on just lazing around and doing a few things around the house and perhaps getting in an easy road run as a weekend cooldown. Kev was home for the weekend and we decided to run at Bradbury instead of the roads.
Though I suspected it would be a foolish decision, I opted to wear my new Minimus for this run as we planned only 3 or 4 miles. The uphills were a little slippery and softer than yesterday but the ice was not as bad as I envisioned without screws and the downs were no problem at all.
I loved the feel of the minimus and for the second run in them, I was happy that I experienced no problems. I did feel a bit of muscle fatigue in the quads from the long run yesterday but very little in the calfs.
Saturday 12 miles @2:23:10 (11:55 pace)
Sunday 4 miles @42:38 (10:39 pace) 2 mile out and back 21:49 out, 20:40 return.