Sunday, the day after I raced a 10km, a friend coaxed me into running part of the Baden Powell trail. It didn’t take much coaxing on his part.
I love trail running, even on tired legs. I love the smell of the earth, the shrubs, the smell of soft moss. The scenery, the lichen covered trees. The sound of rushing waters, and stillness save for our breath and footfalls.
Wanting to bypass the nasty climb from Grouse, we opted for the Powerline trail. Loose pebbles underfoot and hot sun beating down us (as we started the run noonish). I was also in a whiny mood, even though to be fair, the pace was very easy. Poor guy had to wait at every intersection for me. Thanks for waiting!
Despite my whining, I enjoyed myself thoroughly. Even the nasty Seymour grind. (note: I kept asking every 10 minutes how long till the Seymour grind – thinking that the Seymour Grind was closer to the end than it actually was.). We climbed, power hiked, ran the runnable sections and he bombed down the down hills. I delighted in actually being able to run some of the down- hill sections instead of gingerly tip toeing down (although I did my fair share of tip toing gingerly as well) and taking unsuspecting hikers by surprise as we tore past.
We stopped at St. George’s Bench to take in the view, and again, near some rushing waters. It was a hot day, but the canopy of trees provided welcome relief from the heat. Sunlight glinted through the forest. We ran over logs, through mud, dirt, rock and pebbles. Much of the trail was deserted and save for the occasional tourist, we pretty much had the entire Baden Powell to ourselves. It was so still you could hear a pin drop.
At Corey Rock, I was so tired I wanted to cry. Of course, he bombed down the trails, and he was waiting for me so we could finish the run together.
The trails are a sanctuary, a little bit of heaven on earth. I was joyous and he was like a kid in the candy store. No matter how stale or unmotivated I feel in my training, when I hit the trails, I never fail to rediscover the joy of why I run in the first place.