Thursday, April 24, 2014

A Tennessee Sunday

This past Sunday, we drove 20 mins from the house to Long Hunter State Park to hike the Day Loop Trail.  The husband, kiddos and dog were going to hike just over a mile to a beach on the lake and back, while I was going to do my first ever trail run on the 4 mile loop and catch up with them at the trailhead.  I need all the practice I can get before doing the Ragnar Trail McDowell Mountain in November, plus I wanted to break in my snazzy new trail shoes!  It was a beautiful, sunny day so shorts and t-shirts were in order.  As soon as we stepped on to the trail, a family warned us that they'd seen 3 snakes - not such a good way to start your day!  

3 little Camelbaks


I started running with the older 2 kiddos.  We ran about a mile until we reached the beach, then turned around and ran back to meet up with the rest of the crew. The husband told me he'd seen 2 snakes, both entwined with each other (it's snake mating season apparently).  He said it was very disconcerting because they were moving around so fast that he didn't know where they were headed so he could avoid them.  Shudder!  So glad I didn't see that, but it made me a bit nervous for the remainder of the trail that I would be running on my own!

We hung out at the beach for a while, chucking sticks for Molly, wading in the lake and just hanging out in the sun.  There were a lot of boats on the lake and it was just a perfect, sunny day.

Molly cooling off

After a while, the rest of the family headed back the same way we came in and I started to run the remaining 3 miles of trail back to the trailhead to meet them.  The trail had a lot of rocks, roots and hills and it was a lot of fun, although the terrain made me slower than normal.  It was pretty nerve wracking running along the bluffs because if a snake had come at me from the woods, I would probably have just jumped off the bluffs which wouldn't have been good!  Luckily, I didn't see any of the nasty things.  But I also didn't see any other people either which was kinda creepy.  Although I loved the challenge of the trail, I wouldn't have minded seeing some other runners or hikers.  I was leery most of the way and jumpy at all the noises that I heard coming from the woods - snakes or serial killers?!
Mummy in 'action' :)

Off on my lonesome

I met up with the family just before the trailhead and the kids ran the rest of the way with me.  Molly was exhausted by now, poor old dog! Instead of going to a restaurant on the way home, we stopped at a gas station and got some corn nuts
Why did none of my friends tell me about these awesome things?!

(first time I've ever had this delicious, salty snack!) and beer to have in the back yard when we got home.  The perfect redneck way to finish off a fabulous day!  I LOVED the trail running (apart from being a scaredy cat) and I'm really looking forward to my next run in the woods.  But next time, I'm not running alone!  

Well and truly broken in!

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