Outdoor Running Adventures

Running in northern BC with my dog Kobi

Running with Wolves


dog photobomb

Oh hello

Over the long weekend I headed up the highway to the tiny community of Toad River where my friend was house-sitting at a local guide outfitters lodge/home. Being the spontaneous types we are we decided to run to a place referred to as the Nonda Creek Tower. It’s a radio tower at the end of a very rough road. I had driven to this place 10+ years ago so my memory wasn’t serving me well. I figured the route could be anywhere between 6km and 25km. Neither one of us consulted a map Google first.

dog in the mountains

Woo Hoo, we’re in the mountains

We aren’t totally dumb and did pack day-packs to be on the safe side (I’m quite certain mine weighed 20 lbs).
After 9km of blissful uphill running on a nice hard snow packed surface (thank you snowmobilers) we still had no clue how much farther the tower was.

group shot

We look so happy! The dogs didn’t want their photos taken though.

We did clue in to the fresh wolf tracks and wolf scat (poop, but scat sounds smarter). I also noticed that Kobi started heeling a few times. I just thought she was tired or perhaps demonstrating how well-trained she is (she’s a hooligan, but I’m easily fooled).

winter road

Not a bad view

Finally, at 12.5km, we admitted defeat and turned around as we still had to get ourselves back to the truck. By this time the hard packed snow was more like soft snow and my feet were wet and my toes were hurting from attempting to grip the snow from inside my shoes (futile, but I do this).

dog in a creek

Just a cool photo for your viewing pleasure

A few km’s into the return trip, Kobi heels again, this time so intensely she nearly trips me. Again I’m thinking, “what a good girl, so well-trained.” I’m completely exhausted at this point and my blood sugar is low and all the cells in my body were doing their best just to keep my legs moving at the expense of the higher cognitive functions of my brain. Basically, my brain didn’t translate heeling dog = imminent danger.

I’m quite sure there was something lurking in the woods watching us, likely wolves. I’m sure Kobi and the other dog Dino knew we were being watched, but the two completely exhausted humans were unaware.

mountain view at Toad River

More mountain views

Perhaps my obliviousness was my subconscious way of not freaking out. Had I put two and two together, I would’ve been scared. Especially when you’re in the middle of nowhere where cell phones don’t work and where no one else knows your exact location.

Kobi eventually took her usual place of 20-30m in front of the pack (I should have named her Scout) and we made it to the truck. Exhausted and with sore toes, but we made it.

winter trail

This is where Kobi is when there isn’t danger, way out in front.

I’ll know better next time to pay more attention to Kobi’s reactions.  I have high-tailed it out of many areas before because I’ve seen her acting odd.  I’ll blame my recent poor observation skills on low blood sugar and thin mountain air.

Do you find yourself gripping your toes inside your shoes when you run on uneven surfaces? What do you think was lurking in the woods? Wolves? Yeti? Other?

Author: Angie

I live in northern British Columbia, Canada. I found my dog Kobi in 2011 when she was only 5 weeks old and we've been having running adventures ever since.

18 thoughts on “Running with Wolves

  1. Yikes! That’s a little scary. You do have some interesting wild life encounters on your runs! Beautiful pictures as always too.

  2. You and Kobi are superstars! Glad you had your survival backpack with you. If only wolves had an odour, like bears do, so that you could smell them even if you don’t see them. One time while out running, Cash came to an immediate stop on the trail and his hackles went up. I think it was a cougar but i couldn’t see anything. Spent a lot of time looking behind me on the run back home.

    • I wish you could smell wolves like bears, although I would probably smell them everywhere! At least they aren’t like cougars who I swear want to attack you (from behind too). Good thing Cash has a good sense of smell as you live in the heart of cougar country. Those critters scare me the most. I wonder if they’re like tigers and if you wore a mask on the back of your head they wouldn’t attack you. I read that somewhere, not sure if it’s true or if it works.

  3. The photos look so cinematic!! Happy running! 🙂

  4. Super glad that you, Kobi, Dino, and your friend survived your outdoor adventure sans wolves. I probably would have behaved the way you did – oblivious of the danger because of fatigue and low blood sugar. It may be just as well that you were oblivious because if you had been scared, that would have affected Kobi (and possibly the wolves too). It might have made things worse.

    Stay safe!

    • Good point about being scared. It would have really changed Kobi’s reaction and could have turned out differently. Fortunately I’m always low on blood sugar during long runs so I’ll likely continue to be oblivious. Poor Kobi, I can only imagine what she thinks of how unaware I am most of the time.

  5. You need to eat more !
    Love reading about your adventures although in this case a little more planning would have been appropriate.

    • I know! However, Kobi turned into a hungry little beast and ate half my food so I was running on a little less than usual. I’ll plan more appropriately next time. It was a good lesson.

  6. Always amazed by the inbred intuition of your Kobi, and to be able to sense the threat of other dangerous canines in the immediate vicinity.
    A great read Angie! 🙂

    • Thanks for reading Carl! Kobi always impresses me. I have learned to pay better attention to what she’s doing and how she’s reacting as she is far more aware of what’s out there than I am!!

  7. Pingback: Caught Red Handed | theoldfellowgoesrunning

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