West of 98, What Are You Reading

The best mornings start out with reading and then writing.

I’m re-reading West of 98, Living and Writing the New American West.

The best part of reading this book again is that it reminds of all the amazing places I’ve lived and explored in Colorado and Arizona. It gives me fodder for all the stories I want to write.

Truly belonging to this place would mean embracing it as vastly layered and infinitely complex. Wilderness as primal blessing, forever being born and forever dying.” – Gary Ferguson, from the essay in West of 98: Wolf and Coyote and Kumbaya

Mount Eisenhower

I hiked Eisenhower on Sunday like I’ve been wanting to do for a long time.

Clinton Road was not well marked off the Auto Road, but once I knew I was on the right road, I found the trailhead easily. The Edmands Path is a gorgeous trail. The first mile was a nice walk in the woods although I was worried about water for Winnie. Luckily there were a few streams along the way. Once we got to the rocky section closer to the top there was water; it rained a lot there on Saturday. 

There were a lot of dogs on the trail, only two were off leash. But all well behaved and cute! One particular grey/blue pit bull – so adorable.

The top was windy and cold. Mount  Washington was in the clouds but a 360 degree view of the world was not too bad. It was Winnie’s 6th 4,000 footer and her first in the Presidentials. She did great.

I didn’t stay at Eisenhower’s peak for very long. I stayed hidden in front of a small cairn just below the summit cairn to stay out of the wind so Winnie could rest and drink water. I saw about 40 people all day. I probably should’ve done a loop and hiked to Pierce or Monroe. Next time I will plan a bit better. It took just 3 ½ hours to hike and 3,110 feet of elevation gain, according to my Garmin. 

Watch this video from a man who hiked the same day and trail – just a few hours before I did. We must have passed on his way down and my way up. I was so thankful to watch this video because I only took pictures at the top.

I think next weekend I’ll try the Kinsmans.

Monday Motivation, making plans

This weekend I signed up for the Philadelphia Marathon; a marathon I have been wanting to do for a long time. I almost signed up for Umstead but didn’t get in; a 100 mile race in April in North Carolina.

This week I start a new training block getting ready for a few marathons. The training plan has me biking twice a week which I’m excited for since it’s the best time of year to bike.

My next race is September 22 – Kismet. I’m excited to run/hike it since it’s billed as being very difficult and I haven’t spent much time over by Conway since I moved back to New Hampshire. I’ve never hiked Moat or Cathedral Ledge.

Fall 2019 Racing and Training Plan

I have finally decided on my Fall Training and Racing Plan:

  1. Completing as many of the New England 4,000 footers as I can and in the meantime filling out my NH 4000 Footer Grid.
  2. Kismet Cliff Run – September 22
  3. Waterville Valley Mountain Race – September 29
  4. Run the Witch – October 27
  5. Mountain Bike Bear Brook and Franklin Falls

I have a few other races that I’m contemplating but really I just want to hike and mountain run. I’ve been in a bit of a training rut since I don’t have a big goal. I seem to do better with big training plans when I have big goals to meet. 

However, the weather in New Hampshire is finally fantastic; cool mornings – so I have to take advantage and get out of this rut. 

Just writing this and reading it over and over will get me there. 

I’m reading a lot of books about running and ultra running. I’m following a man on Instagram who is doing the Grand Slam of Ultra Running – finishing all four 100s: Leadville, Western States, Wasatch and Vermont 100. I want to do that one day but I have to finish a 100 first. I know that’s what I want to do; I’m sure of it. I know I want to do Lead Woman. I am just having difficulty getting started. But reading and planning and training help. I know I want it. I just have to do the steps.