05/25 – 05/31
05/25/2015 – Monday – Memorial Day
11m, 3:30, ~2600′ – Kendall Katwalk
This is a short, beautiful run/hike climbing moderately and steady from the ample, but full parking lot through old growth forest, past washouts, an old area where fire climbed the mountainside and eventually up past a scree field offering views west down the Snoqualmie Valley. From here, it’s a scant switchback through the meadow and finally to the actual Kendall Katwalk, a 150 yard section of the Pacific Crest Trail saddling steep faces both on both sides, offering sublime views west and east with mountains from sky to sky as far as the eye can see. With just a bit of snow, we took it slow, but the footing was fine, with many before us kicking steps and the snow melted enough to not have to worry about post-holing. Nice to play in the snow a week away from June!
05/26/2015 – Tuesday – Rest
05/27/2015 – Wednesday
9m, 1:15, ~200′ – Puget Sound Waterfront and Sounders 1 – Colorado 0
Cruised the waterfront after work to make sure I get my run in before the Sounders game. Forgot how much fun it is to run fast! Pushed it to probably something close to a 10k pace, which isn’t really all that fast, but for me, was fast. And fun! Topped it off with a pre-Sounders Pioneer Square Saloon drink, then the always enjoyable Sounders game with my usually awesome crew.
05/28/2015 – Thursday
5m, 0:58, ~400 – CH and PT appointment
Anyone who goes to a PT is a masochist. Ok, not really. I did though run on the treadmill while the PT videotaped me from the back and both sides. We reviewed the video together and she systematically broke down and analyzed my form and running gait from the top down. In a nutshell, I need to lean forward ever so slightly more at the waist, my left arm on the backswing pulls back much more than my right arm, which is a sign that I’m not as flexible twisting to my left. When landing on my right side, my left hip drops slightly and my right knee pushes in. When my left foot strikes, my hips are level, but I have a tendency to land crossed over the imaginary line. Also, right before either of my feet strike, my feet curl inwards slightly and I land with most of the pressure on the outside of my feet (possibly causing that stress hairline fracture in my left foot.) The outside toes aren’t meant for that amount of pressure, which is also why the bones are smaller. In contrast your pick toes are large and the bones larger, meaning those toes should take the brunt of the force. I left with a few stretches to work on for when I’m done with my runs to stretch my hip flexor. Nothing hard, just 30 seconds of three exercises each for each hip flexor. Easy peasy.
05/29/2015 – Friday – Rest
05/30/2015 – Saturday
36m, 6:24, 4500′ – Mazama to Winthrop out and back
I’ve done this route before – one way, but never as an out and back. There’s plenty of beautiful trails up in the North Cascades, but for the most part you can’t get to the prettier ones until later in the summer and even early fall because of snow. This route though, from Eidelweiss along NFS 100 and Gun Ranch Road to Winthrop is lower in elevation and clears snow far earlier in the season. It isn’t single track, but packed gravel and packed dirt, but it does have some pretty spectacular views of the valley. Plus, once you get to Winthrop, there’s no way you can’t stop at the Rocking Horse Bakery for lunch and to refill on water before heading back. Gunn Ranch Road heading back towards Mazama, to me, seemed a lot harder, possibly because it was miles 19-36, but also more probably it’s a good 8 miles of continuous semi-gradual grade up. It’s not steep and I could probably run it, but it’s just so long that I’d have to resort to walking. So, I embraced the walking and took it as an opportunity to practice hiking, trying to keep the pace under 15 min/mile just to see if I could and for how long. Walking is harder than it seems.
05/31/2015 – Sunday
30m, 6:45, ~5600′ – Goat Peak loop + Goat Peak
This was supposed to be a shorter run, doing just a loop, but once I got to the base of Goat Peak, I couldn’t resist. The loop itself is also on a forest road, but much farther removed from anyone than NFS 100 that I did yesterday. There’s a good 8 miles where the road isn’t opened and even if it were, there’s a washed out section that would prevent cars from going more than a mile up the road. On top of that, the road winds along the north side of Goat Peak, eventually just dead-ending. Not a problem for me as I was on foot, just me and the semi-fresh baby bear tracks coming towards me, a few streams, and whole of lot of no help if I needed any (thankfully I did not.) Where the road ends (loosely called road by the end) there’s a quarter mile section that is maintained as a trail in the winter, but in the summer there’s only a faint little hint that it’s the trail. I floundered around for 10-20 minutes going back and forth trying to figure out if I was going in the right direction or not. Even though it’s only a quarter mile away to the Goat Peak Trailhead, it’s a full 300-400 feet of vert up, giving me pause. I finally decided that I’d mark my GPS spot on my watch, trek up the faint trail and if in a half mile I wasn’t remotely close to where I thought I needed to be, then I’d track back to where I started using my watch. Thankfully it turned out to be spot on and I stopped and rested for a second at the trailhead, before making it up to Goat Peak Fire Tower lookout taking in the majestic view of the Methow River, the Methow Valley, the Sawtooth Mountains to the south and mountains clear up to Canada to the north. It’s steep, but completely worth it. You should do the hike (at least the Goat Peak part). You cannnot be disappointed.
Weekly running miles: ~91.3
Weekly running time: 18:52
Weekly running vertical gain: ~13,333′
Mohican 100m: 3 weeks
Squamish 50/50: 12 weeks