Monday, May 26, 2008

Memorial Day Run -- 27.3 Miles

Duration: 4 hours, 50 minutes
Length: 27.3 miles
Vertical up: 7722.8 ft
Vertical down: 6978.4 ft
Average speed: 5.6 mph

This was my Memorial Day training run. I ascended both Mentryville/Pico Canyon and the Towsley Canyon trails.

Mentryville is an historic site in California.

There were very few hikers and bikers on the Mentryville/Pico Canyon trail. It isn't as pretty as Towsley Canyon. I passed by a 1958 plaque honoring the first oil well in California. The plaque -- 50 years old -- said the pump was still operating, but in 2008 almost all of the oil field equipment has been removed.

My goal was to take the trail off the top of Pico Canyon (at the Odeen oil platform) down into Towsley Canyon, but it had changed since I saw it in the winter. The descending trail was covered with heavy brush and it was the middle of tick season. I spoke to a hiker at the Odeen platform who knew the trail and he said it is impassible in the spring and summer. I'll try again in the winter.

I then ran back down Pico Canyon. A runner who had just run to Thompson Park, only somewhat up from the trailhead. passed me and I struggled for about 2 miles to keep up. Running back up the Old Road to the Towsley Canyon trail head, I did the outer and inner loops. I ran into old friends making a day out of the hike. There were lots of hikers on the trail.

With little food (only two breakfast bars), it was a struggle. But, I didn't bonk! I'm ready for Wyoming.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Deb's Garden

Here are pix of part of Deb's garden. As usual, it is quite amazing this time of year.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Round Trip Home to Towsley Canyon Park

Duration: 2 hours, 18 minutes, 39 seconds
Length: 12 miles
Vertical up: 3702.9 ft
Vertical down: 3628.8 ft
Average speed: 5.2 mph

This typical round trip run from my home to Towsley Canyon runs both the outer and inner loops there. Towsley Canyon (or Ed Davis Park) is a locally-famous mountain biker's park, but there are many runners like me on the trail. The trail head is immediately to the west of I-5, on the Old Road. The trail head is about two miles from my home; everything east of I-5 is boring road running.

The outer loop is about five miles, and the inner loop is about 1.5 miles. The inner loop still has one of the species signs my son Sean put up for his eagle project 10 years ago. There were four others but they were wiped out in the fire in this canyon about three years ago.

The west side of the outer loop consists of some very tough switchbacks. When I was in my biking days, I biked the trail only once without having to leave my pedals.

I've run this four times this week, mountain biking it a fifth day. It was raining May 23 and 24, 2008 and I emerged from the trail completely drenched. The 24th was in the low 50s -- cold.

The flowers are still blooming. It is really wonderful.

My injuries from Leona Divide have almost disappeared. I have an annoying "shoelace" tendinitis on one foot. My 14-month nerve injury in my neck that has numbed and very slightly disabled (don't like to hand write because it hurts and can't be read; can only weight lift at 80% of my left) my right arm and hand persists, but I otherwise raring to go.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Malibu Creek Run May 2008

A 6-K. Deb, Casey and I ran it. I came in fifth in my age group, only a few seconds off of second place. However, with the numbness in my right arm due to a nerve injury of 14 months, I can't handwrite my name very well on the entry form. Deb, running on a stress fracture as crazy as it sounds, came in eighth.

Sunday, May 4, 2008

My son's birthday!

My sixth son, Owen, is 10 years old today! We love Owen.