Part 1Waking at 5 a.m. Sunday, I'd hoped to log 13 of the day's 17 miles by 8:30 so I could make church and watch the kids hone their pyromania by serving as acolytes. Alas, I did not reach the homestead until 8:55, sweaty, parched and quite unbalanced (I ran out of water at mile 9) so church was a scratch for this sinner.
A quarter mile from home heading east on Hwy. 136 and down toward
the mist shrouded Charlotte, Iowa. The peace of running at this time of
day made the early alarm well worth it . . .
Still on Hwy. 136, just near my left turn into Charlotte on Case/145th St. (the back road).
Couldn't believe my good fortune in having 2 wabbity wabbits wait for me!
Having traveled east through Charlotte, I turned south on Co. Hwy. Z24,
which locals refer to as Community Care Road since it passes what was once
the County Home. Just over the hill, south of Rossiter Cemetery is a stand
of trees along a creek on the west side of the road. From one of the limbs
hangs this sweet, solitary swing. I've never seen anyone near it . . .
someday I may just have to hop the fence and take a break!
Five miles from home, I turned right (west) onto gravel road 175th St. for nearly
3 miles of grueling up/downs. I was shocked with how soft the road was.
I'm thinking recent spotty rains really dumped along this stretch.
How's this for hill work?
With so many red-winged blackbirds keeping me company, I was
delighted to see this male goldfinch hanging out.
He was very patient while I snapped several shots.
After taking the birdy pictures, I looked over my shoulder and couldn't
resist taking a snap of where I'd been.
A common thistle, or as some would say, Jenny's self portrait. :)
Until last Friday, we had been very dry and parched in this part of Iowa,
so it's been amazing to see how much the corn plants had grown in 48 hours!
Another windmill for Bonnie!
The gravel road exited onto the Humeston Road, heading north. It was
also around this time that I began to slow way down due to running out
of water. My hopes of making it home by 8:30 were beginning to fade.
I never tire of bridges, even when spanning little creeks like this one.
Running the Humeston hills reminds me that I kind of miss biking. These
ups and downs and twists and turns are REALLY fun on 2 wheels.
The homestretch. With less then a mile to the top of that hill and DONE,
I think I'd gotten a bit dehydrated as my balance was a little off and a headache
had set in. I hate to admit it, but I walked most of this last mile.
(Pointers for next time: A. Take the damn phone! 2. Put extra waters on the route!)
12 HOURS LATER . . .
A very awesome luncheon meet up with members of my Ragnar Great River Relay
ultra team refueled me after the morning's 13 and served as a perfect motivator to
get me back out the door for the final 4. Late afternoon showers swept in and
I didn't hit the road until 6:15pm. While humid, it was cool and gorgeous.
With showers still falling to the south and west, it made for an eerily cloudy setting.
Such great views from Hwy. 136. Such a difference from the washed-out
sunny brightness of this morning's run.
Many cows were bedded down in their pastures, though some remained curious.
. . . and I ran until the cows came home!