I ventured back into the mountains this morning for the first time since my last debacle. That incident was a big blow to me, perhaps bigger than I was able to relay in my blog entry.
This morning I decided to play it safe by sticking to the main trails, THE main trail, The Main Divide. The Main Divide is a truck trail, sometimes loose, almost sandy, sometimes quite rocky, that runs along the ridge of The Saddleback Mountains. I’ve run The Main Divide on many occasions, but always as a connection to other trails in order to form some sort of loop. This morning I ran ONLY The Main Divide. I parked in Blue Jay Campground (actually Falcon Campground which is pretty much the same place) and headed up.
Gnats swarmed me in the beginning, but I ran relatively gnat-free during the most difficult, exposed parts of the trail. I noticed coyote tracks, lots of deer tracks and bobcat tracks, plus a variety of other little cute tracks that I could not identify. I also took in my calories like a good trail runner (595 by the time I was finished) and kept hydrated. Toward the end, the weather was hot as hell. I have no other way to describe it. When I began to waver, I took in more calories and gained the additional strength that I needed. The wonder of calories. I never once felt light-headed or nauseated. Not only that, even in this hot, hot, hot weather, I did not once need to stop in the shade to cool down.
I saw only one other runner out today. He was someone I know, an accomplished, humble runner Scott Barnes (He placed 2nd in Twin Peaks last year, finishing his 50 miles a little before I finished my 50 kilometers). We chatted for a few minutes then headed off our separate ways. Plenty of motorcyclists made their way along The Main Divide as well. I spoke to one of them who asked directions to Modjeska Peak, and then asked me, “What the heck are you doing out here?” I did not come across one single mountain biker. This was very unusual.
So, I ran out a little over 8 miles, which brought me past the Indian Truck Trail junction. Then I simply turned around and ran back. Yes, I was quite fatigued running The Main Divide back to my truck. But I wore a huge grin because this time, I wasn’t seat belted in the seat of a fire truck.
The Main Divide