Sunday, August 1, 2010
Hill Country State Natural Area 10 miles west of Bandera Texas is a beautiful, rugged place. Saturday it was gleaming with deep green foliage. The rains this year have made for tall grass and budding brush as well as trees. On some trails the foliage made for a tight squeeze along the trails. There were 7 of us for Saturday's trail run. No stars to view this morning as it was a cloudy sky at our 5 AM start. It was the first night run for El. And Or was trying out his new headlamp. At one point I was ahead of the pack and turned to see 6 plus headlamps and handhelds bobbing down the trail in the dark. I wished I had my camera. At mile 6 we gathered together and teased each other as we usually do, then broke up into two groups. A 15+ mile group and a 13 mile group. The sun had broken through the clouds and made for a beautiful sight as we climbed a steep hill to the top known as sky island. The sun burning the clouds away was a sight we had to pause for. Or also had to pause to do like a cat(and proper trailrunner)and dig a hole. After descending Sky Island we heard voices from atop the three sisters, A group of hills in close proximity to each other. It was Li and Jo cresting the last sister. Soon they caught up with us as did C, B, and L. Along the run we experienced cool breezes in the open areas and on the hilltops but it was humid. Or and El ran out of water. I shared some. Then about a 1/2 mile later Jo, with his new scratches and bruises courtesy of the sisters, tilted his water bottle to find it empty. I tried to share and was out myself! Luckily we were only 1 mile from our starting point. Arriving at the cars we shared stories, teased each other again, drank, and ate watermelon. Then C, Li, B, and L, took off to the hills for more fun. By now though, the sun had burned all the clouds away and was starting to really warm up. Eventually it reached 98 degrees Saturday afternoon.
What did we learn today? Carry more water than you think you need. Especially when running in very desolate parks. And be prepared, in case you have to fertilize the landscape.