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Training Log Archive: Swampfox

In the 7 days ending Jan 15, 2017:

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Sunday Jan 15, 2017 #


After skiing, and then running, I supped from the fruit of the cara-cara. I supped from some other things, too, but it is the tanginess of the cara-cara that lingers, a ruby-red splash of sweetness. Maybe it came from somewhere near El Paso or Phoenix?

While running in the dark, at one point I saw a small black shape in the snow ahead, about where the start/finish line had been for a ski race yesterday. I thought maybe there was movement, but it was hard to see. Maybe slight movement. Maybe no movement. Then, as I was passing to the side, I saw definite movement, and I could make out the shape as a fox. I whistled to let it know for sure I was there, and for all I could tell it didn't pay me the least bit of attention. I thought that was odd. It seemed intent on sniffing out some scent in the snow. Maybe mouse? Or maybe it was sniffing the scent of something that had been there earlier.

Skiing conditions were excellent. Another day with no sun, and also there was no wind.

Saturday Jan 14, 2017 #


An odd day in the valley as the sun was full out until early afternoon, when fog bank from the NW swung by and clipped the extreme NE corner of town I happened to be walking at the time. For a few minutes I was enveloped in dense fog. Then the fog pushed on and the sun returned. Within another hour, however, fog moved in from the west side of the valley and overtook the entire town. It wasn't very deep, and by the time you entered the mouth canyon on I-80 headed east, you were already above.

Ski conditions at Happy Jack were excellent! Skied and then ran some, until past dark. The stars seemed unusually bright once it got dark--but that's probably just because we've had so many lightly cloudy nights in a row that my perception was altered.

Friday Jan 13, 2017 #


Skiing conditions were again superb today, though it didn't seem right to have no wind. What happens of cowboys and cowgirls experience too much of that, and start getting soft? It would be no good, that's what it would be.

My favorite thing I've learned this week is that Presbyterian College's nickname is the Blue Hose. Besides the fact that this sounds highly odd in and of itself, I grew up in the same state Presbyterian College (we often just called it "PC") is in, and never once heard the term "Blue Hose". Maybe this is just fake news, minus the news part?

My favorite moment of sympathy this week did involve fake news however. I should point out that generally I'm not very sympathetic to a lot of stuff. For instance, when someone takes a baseball bat to a hornets nest and they get viciously stung dozens of times by seethingly irate hornets, I'm not sympathetic. Well, maybe to the hornets.

Anyway, the moment came during the president-elect's press conference, when he complained bitterly about having been unfairly besmirched by fake news. I was so sympathetic! How could anyone do that to him, our president-elect, such a paragon of shining moral excellence! So moved was I by my anguish and heartfelt sympathy that I began to tear out great handfuls of my hair! Boy, did that hurt, and it increased my almost unbounded sympathy even more!

Naturally the thought of "birther" never crossed my mind.

Thursday Jan 12, 2017 #


Ran into Mark Jenkins at the trailhead just as I was getting ready to ski and he was finishing up. He said it had been so good he had skied an extra 5 kms, and it really was good. I headed straight out for the Summit Loop and did repeats on the loop until it was dark. As good as it was, I only saw one other person besides Mark the whole time I was out--but then Summit is at the far end of the trail net, and it gets little use at the end of the day.

I came home and it felt a little chilly when I walked in the door. That's not unusual. I usually turn down the hear when I'm going to be out for a while, and metabolism slows down after skiing during the drive home, and it just seems normal to feel a little chilly for a bit afterwards. However, this time it didn't take too long before I recognized I wasn't feeling well and there were other reasons why I was feeling chilled. So I bundled up, took it easy the rest of the evening, and slept about 9 1/2 hours, feeling mostly better in the morning the next day. Don't think I had any fever, but if I did, it was mild.

Weird, but something along these lines happens to me every so often--maybe once in every two years or so. I don't for sure remember the last time I've been sick-sick, but I think it was in the spring of 2012. Maybe it's been that long since I've even had a cold.

Wednesday Jan 11, 2017 #


Superb skiing conditions--firm, well groomed trails everywhere, with about an inch of fresh snow on top. No wind, temps in the mid to upper 20s. And a nearly full moon. Easily a "10". My miss was getting out a little too late, and having to leave earlier than I would have liked in order to make the basketball game.

Tuesday Jan 10, 2017 #


A little more like winter today and less like spring slush in town. Up top, skiing was quite good, conditions anyone could be happy with, even anyone named Jack. Felt good skiing, and then went running right as nightfall was settling in. But no worries--a really big moon had risen and was shining the way. Even with some wispy clouds overhead, I had good shadows to use while running. Funny though--after feeling good while skiing, while running my legs felt like they were filled with sludge. Maybe not enough rest last night is a leading guess, but since I was only planning to do some light running anyway, it hardly mattered.

Monday Jan 9, 2017 #


Out of curiosity, I looked back in my training records to compare how different local ski conditions were for Dec 2016 compared with Dec 2015. My sense was, and remains, that Dec 2016 was unusually poor due to thin coverage (and when the coverage is poor, I generally prefer to run and take advantage of low snow levels that way) and the damage from 2 wind events. The comparability of the two periods is somewhat affected by the fact I was out of town for 3 days in Dec 2016.

Pretty different:

Dec 2016 - running 35 hours, ski 21 hours
Dec 2015 - running 30 hours, ski 45 hours


Unusual day insofar as it sprinkled very lightly much of the day in town. Rain in January is pretty rare here, and it does get the frogs confused.

Up top the light sprinkles of town were instead light snows. Ski conditions were spring-like, with very firm trails and snow with a high moisture content. Lacking any structure (structure? who needs any stinkin' structure?), my skis were slowish, and I had to borrow a can of kick ass from a friend and take a few whiffs of that in order to power around the trails with the proper amount of fim and fet (f&f). It felt awesome to be out.

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