Sunday, December 5, 2010

Day 5 - Hawk Mountain, Pinnacle and Pulpit Rock.....done!

Coffee, eggs, bottles, gels, and out the door and on the mountain by 7:45 a.m. It was snowing at the start of the run today which was cool. I am ready for the trails to be covered with a lot of snow to remove the rocks from the trails for a couple of months. The run I did today started at the Hamburg Reservoir parking lot where I start most of my runs. My car was the only one in the lot when I left for the run. When the leaves were changing the parking was packed at that time. I think a lot of people stay inside when it gets cold because they don't know how to dress for it. As long as you keep moving forward and are dressed right you don't get cold. I have been thinking about hitting all three mountain lookouts for awhile - Hawk Mountain, Pinnacle and Pulpit Rock. Well today was the perfect day and I had the time to do it.

The first lookout I ran to was Hawk Mountain.  It was just over 8 miles, two big climbs and plenty of rocks to get there. At about mile 7.5 I tripped on a rock and was looking at the sky - the pic is posted below of my view. It is part of the sport of trail running on rocks and you never know when it is going to happen. It usually happens on the flattest section of the trail. After I climbed up the last section of rocks to the North Lookout I meet a guy there and his job was to count/record what kind of birds he sees from sun up to sun down. If you were never at Hawk Mountain it is a great place to visit. Be careful on the rocks on the way down from the North Lookout they seem to be very slippery or maybe it was just me. After getting off of Hawk Mountain property I headed down Hawk Mountain Road which is a sweet 1.5 mile down hill run on the road to the turn to get back on the Appalachian Trail. Then going up the big 2 mile climb the legs were feeling a little tired. I made it to the top and when I hit the flat stuff they were back to normal.

Bridge on the Appalachian Trail near Hawk Mountain Road

Creek on the Appalachian Trail
near Hawk Mountain Road
Creek Crossing on the Appalachian Trail
near Hawk Mountain Road

The Appalachian Trail going up
The Blue Trail at Hawk Mountain
My view after I tripped on some rocks on the Blue Trail

The view from the North Lookout
Hawk Mountain

Looking north from the North Lookout - Hawk Mountain

Looking east - Hawk Mountain
Creek on the Appalachian Trail
Heading east on the Appalachian Trail
 to the Pinnacle

The second lookout I ran to was the Pinnacle at around mile 15. There were around ten people up there. When the leaves were changing there were well over 50 people up there. I snapped a pic had a drink and was on my way. The next section from the Pinnacle to Pulpit Rock is very rocky. I have to take my time on these sections right now until my ankles get stronger. I use to fly on these sections before I rolled both ankles in the last couple of months. They are feeling better every run and I am getting more confidence back on running on the rocks.

The view from the Pinnacle
The third lookout I ran to was Pulpit Rock at just over 17 miles. I just love it up there. It is also the closest lookout from the parking lot - 1.6 miles to the top from the road and 2.3 or 2.4 if you take the Appalachian Trail. I went down the AT only passing three people. After I made it to the road section I saw Anna a running friend and her daughter going for a hike. When I made it to my car the GPS read 19.65 so I ran down the road to make it an even 20 miles.

The view from Pulpit Rock
The view from Pulpit Rock
Overall my legs felt better and I didn't have the pain in them from running in the NB101. When I get the time  I'm going to start looking at some other trail shoes. My Brooks Cascadia have to much room in the heal and I don't feel safe in them anymore. The older pairs felt great but not the newest pair.

I made it home with little time to spare and the family and I were off for the last show of the Nutcracker.  Everything went very smooth and this time we got to watch some of it. All the people worked very hard and  had a great two shows. Supper was at the Westy to try and replace some of the calories I burn today.

12-5-2010 - 20 miles - 4:45 - run

No comments:

Post a Comment