Training Run – June 20, 2010
First 3/4 – Father’s Day
Glenn was running the 24 hr relay and raising funds tor kids, a very worthy reason to miss the training run. A few other were off bagging peaks …
Despite being nearly the longest day of the year, the weather gods had not yet welcomed in summer. We are still waiting.
The group met at Lynn Canyon and arranged for shuttles back to the start at Nelson Creek. A good sized crew showed up, 45 or so? including miscellaneous pets*. We headed up from the Nelson Creek parking lot around 8 am. There were no bagpipes to send us off.
This is the first training run of the year to head up and over Black Mountain, and for some its their first time on this steeper part of the course. This can be a good test, or a wake up call. The route starts on the trail to Whyte Lake, with its new bridge, fancy boardwalks and solid cedar outhouse (worth checking out). The lower woods were peaceful with birds singing and not a vuvuzela to be heard anywhere. From here the route rejoins the BP trail for the steep climb up to Eagle Bluffs.
One of the best parts of these runs is the chance to catch up with friends. Doug and I started at the back of the pack, talked a lot and the faster runners soon left us far behind. As we left the old road systems and headed into the woods we looked but there was no sign of the crazy grouse that haunted the lower trail a couple of years ago. We gained altitude and the weather became misty and much cooler and the boulder field was slippery. For some runners this is their first chance to experience the awesome views from Eagle Bluffs … but not today.
Above Eagle Bluff the snow on the trail was melting very quickly, there was far less than 2 weeks ago. I’d be surprised if there is much left by mid July. The melt was leaving behind smaller patches of snow in various states of decay and large stretches of mud. Karen and her camera were strategically located beside one large mud bath, taking photos of those caught unaware. We saw only a few others out hiking in this alpine area.
The trail from Black down to Cypress Bowl was as steep, ill designed and as tough on the thighs as ever. The new lodge area was very quiet. On the traverse over to Hollyburn, we saw very fresh bear poop, and a fellow hiking through the mud in his Top Siders. At the sign post at the junction of the Mt Hollyburn trail there was less than a meter of snow. We ran a short distance on snow on the cross country trails and left that snow behind before we got to the warming hut. The trail was in good shape (watch your head!) all the way down the Hollyburn shute and the rest of the way to Cleveland Dam. Doug and I had Father’s Day noon curfews, so we called it a day at the Dam. The rest continued on to Lynn Canyon.
Until next week …
*editor’s note: Knee Knacker discourages pets on the Sunday training runs.