I love the start of the spring trail running series at Great Glen. It provides a target to motivate me to get out and start running during the time when we're coming off the ski season and the weather isn't always all that inviting for trail running. Typically we start training by running the local roads while the trails dry out. But the opening afternoon of the Series usually means that many of the single tracks in the woods as well as all of the gravel trails at GGT are now ready.
So today was the opening day. And boy do I really love it when it's raining and windy and cold like it was this afternoon. No, really - I'd sooo much rather run in chilly temps than the heat. So this was the optimum conditions for me in my currently poor running condition. Eli has set up a particularly devious course for this spring. The first two miles are basically uphill, ok maybe not that bad but you do end up on top of Dugway at the two mile marker then have 1.5 miles left. It's a challenge for me to leave a little something so I'm not totally wiped out by the time I get to the "summit". Sue and I had reconned the course a couple of days ago and that helped.
But where I really lost time, and the reason I know I can do better next week, was on the last piece of single track coming back down onto Dragon Corridor. I'm paying a lot of attention to each footfall with all the roots you encounter here so when I looked up and saw the entire rear end of momma moose coming up fast I had to set the brakes hard! Neither she nor her little one in front had seen, heard or smelled me coming....yikes! "Hey Moosies!" I yell, yes, in northern NH the plural of moose is moosies. That got her to look around but not move. Damn. So I advanced on her and the little one takes off down to Dragon and the gravel surface, slowly followed by Mom. I cut down to the gravel while Mom continues down the single track that now parallels the gravel. Bad move. She senses that I'm about to pass her and move up on her little one, which I was of course - this is a race after all and they're holding me up. So she bolts along snorting with her ears back to cut me off then finally they both veer off into the woods. "See ya girls", and away I go.
Very cool beginning to the trail running season.