Sunday, March 1, 2009
Dreaming of summer
The Canadian Rockies are stunningly spectacular and I'm getting excited thinking about all the awesome runs I'm going to do this year. 2008 was a fantastic year full of adventures and big goals. I started the season early by visiting my Dad and running the Tararua Mountain Race in New Zealand which is the hardest 35 km I've ever done. There were gale force winds on top of the mountain that swept me off my feet more than once; I think it's the only time I've ever wished that I weighed more!!
In May I ran my first 80 km and despite my i.t band screaming at me for the last part, it was an awesome race. And then it was the BIG one ..... the Canadian Death Race (drum rolls please). My first ever 125 km. What an experience; I felt so proud crossing the finishing line and despite the i.t band flaring up near the start, I was in fairly good shape at the end. One of my favourite outings was running/hiking up Cascade Mountain which is a mountain that dominates the Banff landscape and I've been wanting to climb it for many, many years so was jazzed that Steve took me up it. An exploratory jaunt out to Northover Pass in Kananaskis was probably one of the best runs I've ever done and definitely one I will return to this year as it's breathtaking out there with lots of wildlife (we saw 4 moose and a grizzly with her cub).
Also on the cards was a road trip into B.C (British Columbia) which was a lot of fun and very different from running here. Just getting to the trailheads in B.C is an adventure - my poor princess car came back with quite a few squeeks!
And I finished the season with my first ever big solo trip into the mountains; 80 km, 3 passes and prime grizzly habitat. Yep, at the end of the day I was wondering what the heck I was doing out there by myself, especially as I was losing daylight. But I survived and it was the biggest adventure I've ever done in my life so I walked away from it with lots of valuable insights (like, don't lose your map!)
And Steve and myself finished off the year with a trip to Las Vegas just for something totally different. We ran out at Red Rocks a couple of times and other nearby forest parks and ended the week with the Las Vegas Marathon. I've never done a road marathon before and I hated it - I'm definitely a mountain girl and will stick with the trails.