2011-02-06 - SCGT Icy Deadfalls and PF

~1.5 miles @ ~30 min/mi

Jennifer Weiland and I hesitate to run today, given reports of ice along the trails, but the chance of getting some long early mileage is too much to resist. So at 0530 I meet J at her home and we ride together in my car to the Watkins Mill Rd crossing of the Seneca Creek Greenway Trail. On the drive out we chat about the value of optimism to a runner. Our positive mental attitudes are soon to be tested, as it turns out! The trail is icy from the start, but by flashlight we manage to trek along for half a mile before a mass of downed trees force us off course. We blunder downhill and up, discover bramble bushes, and finally manage to get back on the trail. We decide to head back to the car and call it a day. Trotting along smartly, I slip and fall on my side, fortunately without major damage.

Soon after that stumble I discover that we've been going the wrong way on the trail! Backtrack again, and at the fallen trees we're confused again. This time we scramble around the mess, scout uphill and down, and finally decide follow what seems to be the tracks of previous runners. Or maybe it's just a deer path? Eventually we emerge from the woods to find ourselves at the top of a long ridge above Seneca Creek, with Watkins Mill Rd visible to our south. We pick our way downslope, cross a frozen meadow, find a passage over a tributary stream, and rejoin the proper blue-blazed SCGT.

After I get home, via the local bagel bakery, it's not yet 8am so I call Rebecca Rosenberg — she's on her way to run on roads in Seneca Creek State Park, a bit too far away for me to venture again. I check with Karen Donohue but she's busy with family duties. So I drive alone to Candy Cane City a few miles from home with the idea of running with MCRRC buddies on roads along Rock Creek. Alas, the parking lot is completely full. I backtrack, park near Meadowbrook Stables, and set off jogging. It only takes a few dozen steps for my left heel to start hurting seriously, in spite of the brand-new shoes and thick padded socks I'm wearing. Is it plantar fasciitis? My symptoms, dating from the 2010-12-11 - Magnus Gluteus Maximus 50k, tell me it's not my day to run. Back to the car and home once more.

(See the trackfile and for an animated experience click on the "Player" and when it finishes loading choose "Hybrid" map view, then click the "Play" triangle to follow our confused course through the woods.) - ^z - 2011-02-17