Outdoor Running Adventures

Running in northern BC with my dog Kobi


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Life in a Snow Globe

I’m beginning to feel like I live in a snow globe as it never seems to stop snowing.  I did see that big yellow star they call the sun yesterday and for a little bit today, but it’s gone again.  I think I can count on one hand how many times I’ve seen the sun since the beginning of December.  It’s getting depressing.

I decided to run on New Year’s day in town as I figured the trails would be better there, they were worse.  I did get to the see the elusive moose just at the bottom of my road when I was en route to town though, so he or she does really exist – Kobi barked at it.

Moose in the snow

The moose that makes the tracks I keep seeing, it’s a bit blurry.

So back to the run.  It was horrible.  It took me 45 minutes to cover 4.5 km.  I got excited when I could run on part of the trail that the deer had been using as it was slightly easier than breaking trail myself.  I did a lot of cursing in frustration while Kobi was running around having fun.  I need to try to embrace her dog happiness regardless of conditions.

Trails covered in snow

Our New Year’s Day run in the snow.

I gave up on the trails and opted for the road for the last bit of the worst run ever.  Problem with road running is that Kobi needs to be on a leash and she turns into a sled dog the second a leash goes on.  She is from the Northwest Territories so she could be part sled dog, who knows.  Anyway, it was more cursing on my part and Kobi running out of control. Lot’s of fun.

To add to my worst run of the year I came down with a nasty cold that night – compliments my hubby who got it first.  That was karma catching up with me as I am very unsympathetic to him when he gets a “man cold”.

To prove my superior strength to him (as I always boast I am so tough) I went to swim class the next morning and cross-country skied a few hours later.  I did have to go to bed after the ski as I was feeling absolutely horrible and completely drained by that point, but I didn’t tell him that.

The ski was stunning, apart from feeling like digging a hole in the snow and curling up to sleep.  I took this picture during the ski as it reminded me of something from a Dr. Seuss book.

Black spruce in winter

The view during my ski yesterday.

Oh, I want to thank HappyLife.HealthyLife for nominating me for the Liebster Award, how cool is that?  Check out her blog, she is hilarious and also offers these cool training plans.  I’ll address that awesome nomination in my next blog, but first I have a question for you other bloggers.  I understand that I need to nominate a few more bloggers and I read so many awesome blogs, but I suspect some of them have also been nominated in the past.  How do I know if someone has been nominated before, or should I just nominate away?

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Life in the North

Temperature chart

Today’s temperature, at least it wasn’t windy

The week has continued to be cold and snowy.  I walk Kobi in the dark in the morning and again in the dark after work.  I feel like I live in the dark.  There’s been so much snow and cold that even I can’t tolerate to run outside, plus I’m not especially keen on running into that darn moose at night.

I can almost see how it would go down too.  I’d be wearing my little headlight (batteries replaced, by the way, so it’s much brighter) and looking down to avoid any eye contact with the monsters in the woods.  Kobi would be off slaying dragons and velociraptors up ahead somewhere out of sight.  Suddenly something would tell me to look up and wham, I’d broadside a moose.  The moose would scream, I’d scream, then I’d panic and turn the opposite direction and run as fast as I could.  I would likely be wearing my running snowshoes which I would manage to trip on, face plant in the snow and then proceed to get trampled by the panicked moose. 

That’s why I’m choosing not to run outside in the dark right now.  I will run outside on weekends during the day when I can actually see what large mammals I may encounter before crashing into them. 

Speaking of darkness, as of today we are at 6 hours and 14 minutes of daylight (hours from sunrise to sunset).  Soon it will be the solstice, 6 hours and 13 minutes of daylight, and then we slowly get more and more daylight minutes that eventually add up to hours.  By June 22 we get 18 hours and 27 minutes of daylight.  How awesome is that?!  That’s when the birds sing until 11:30PM, take a short nap and start singing again at 3AM.  I have lived through enough northern winters to never ever resent getting woken up by birds singing at 3AM, it is such a beautiful sound.  

Oh and another factoid/observation made by me, the wanna-be biologist, snowshoe hare rabbits love eating alder branches.  My brilliant observation skills discovered this on our walks and while picking up Kobi’s poop behind the house.

   

snowshoe hare tracks

Snowshoe hare tracks by the alder bushes

Stay tuned for my weekend update, I’m sure something interesting will happen.  I will be test-driving my new men’s merino wool boxer briefs too.  I really want someone to make practical warm boxer briefs for girls (not cute short ones), and without that bulgy part in the front…

PS.  If you dig my dog Kobi, check out our Facebook page.  I post really awesome photos of her which include absolutely brilliant statements made entirely by her. https://www.facebook.com/pages/My-Outdoor-Running-Adventures/639019532794970


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Moose Tracks

Moose tracks

Fresh moose tracks where we walk

We’ve had a week of nothing but snow and cold.  I haven’t run outside much as a result.  Every walk with Kobi involved wearing snowshoes and choking on snowflakes.  It finally stopped snowing on Friday and today (Sunday) it warmed up to -10C.

On our Friday lunch hour walk, in the sun, a moose had meandered along the same trail we were walking along.  I was pretty sure I was going to end up seeing it as the tracks were very fresh and Kobi was pretty excited.  The snow was so deep she had to stay on the trail rather than try to follow the moose tracks.

Dog in the deep snow

Kobi in the deep snow

One thing about Kobi, maybe most dogs, is she loves eating moose and deer poop.  She was thrilled to find some moose nuggets and wasted no time in indulging herself.  I’ve given up trying to stop her and she doesn’t eat so much that she makes herself sick, good thing she can show restraint.   Hey, we all have things we like to eat but know we probably shouldn’t.  Mine is red liquorice.

dog in the snow

Kobi digging for nuggets

Yesterday we had a great ski in the forest.  I’d have taken photos as it was stunning out there with all the new snow and sunshine, but it was -24C and I was reluctant to remove my mittens.

The ski tracks weren’t set yet as it had been snowing so hard for days.  I wanted to ski for 2 hours and on our second loop around we ran into the awesome trail groomer dude who was out setting track.  I did a happy dance when I saw him.   He probably thought there was something wrong with me as trying to dance on skis likely doesn’t look like dancing.

We followed him back in order to have a slightly easier ski on nice set tracks.  I was really tired by that time and Kobi’s feet were full of snow and ice (I felt bad for her).  We motored along and made it back to the parking lot in great time.  I started my vehicle, put Kobi inside, got some of my gear off and then proceeded to lock myself out of the vehicle.

Yup, that’s another of my super powers.  When fatigued I do stupid things. Fortunately there was another girl in the parking lot who leant me her phone (as mine was in the vehicle safe and warm with Kobi) so I could call home for help.  I was only slightly hypothermic by the time my hubby rescued me 20 minutes later (the other vehicle was buried in snow and it was also -24C out so it needed to warm up a tad first).

I will have to teach Kobi how to unlock doors.  At least I had put a warmer jacket on before locking myself out or it would’ve been really bad.

What’s your funny “locked out of the vehicle story”?

Dog paw

Kobi’s feet are adapting to the cold and snow by getting more hairy