Saturday, August 04, 2018

Summer catch-up 2018

We've been back from Petoskey for over a month now (I do believe if I had stayed even one more day, I would never have left) - and this blog has been sorely neglected in the interim.
So! Catching up on the trip back to Boulder - more lovely running in the Great Plains - followed by some delightful running and events in Boulder!

The westward trip across the Plains offered up a variety of sights and, with two nights on the road, two early morning runs.

One more gas station walk for Mister Taz - this time with Dino!
Cheese, cow - gotta be Wisconsin!

Sisson Peony Gardens in Rosendale, Wisconsin - garden first started in the 1920s!

Found a bike trail a few blocks from the hotel. Score!
(Taz spotted a bunny, of course)

And the trail came with raspberries!

What would a trip across the plains be without a sunrise run
amidst the fields of Nebraska
Once back in Boulder the funnin' and runnin' continued.

...reunions reunions reunions!
Phenomenal year for cherries!
Good thing lots of friends & family
to help pick!

Portlandians visited! The family is together again!

Grad School Study Buddy Reunion - at the Dead and Company Concert! Awesome!

Deb! Most fabulous work partner - and Chief PJ's Run Logistics Partner -
back in town for a brunch rendezvous

And, of course, there has been many a morning run...
Running past Baseline lake early in the morning - there's a pelican on that raft and a moon about to set...
Sunrise over South Boulder Creek Trail
63rd Street Farm - always an entertaining sight on the run toward Longmont - this time with turkeys and piglets along with the sows and hogs.
Next up:  an August-September road trip with trail runs in Pennsylvania (Allegheny River Trail), New Jersey (Paulinskill Valley Trail), Connecticut (Farmington River Trail), Rhode Island (Blackstone River Greenway), Massachusetts (Minuteman Bikeway), Maine (Acadia National Park), Vermont (Island Line Rail Trail) and New Hampshire & New York - for which I'm still working on figuring out the trails. If we pull this off, that will be states 37-45 in the quest to run a trail in every state!

Thursday, June 21, 2018

Revisiting a memorable trail

On the last day of my run from Boulder to Petoskey, I ran from the old depot in the little town of Brutus down a single-track overgrown trail with many gaps and hops from trail to road to trail  (fortunately, high school buddy Connie had arranged for a friend of hers - an avid cyclist and trail advocate - to guide me along this haphazard trail) before arriving at the more fully developed Little Traverse Wheelway trail that would lead me into Petoskey.

Since that day (August 1, 2007), much effort has been put into that sketchy trail and it is now a very runnable (and rideable) part of the North Western State Trail and I've been itching to revisit it. Today was the day!

In 2007, we paused in late morning at Spring Lake Park because I was running ahead of schedule (Connie had said she would meet me along the Wheelway at a designated time and, for some reason on this last day of running, my pace was quicker than it had been the prior 56 days! 'Twas a good thing we waited because, not only was Connie waiting to meet me, but also my mom, son, brother, good friend from Boulder and a bunch of high school buddies. What a welcome reception!)  Today the plan was to run in the opposite direction, starting at Spring Lake Park and running north.

August 1, 2007 - last day of the run from Boulder to Petoskey and just plain giddy!

Today - revisiting the trail - not nearly as fit but still loving to run and wearing the same hat!

On to the trail and, oh my goodness, the folks (Top of Michigan Trails Council and friends and partners) have put a lot of work into it. 7.5 miles of the trail is asphalt now (between Spring Lake and Alanson) with the remainder packed limestone (between Alanson and Mackinaw City), the trail is clearly marked, and there is even the occasional bench as well as viewing areas for nature preserves.

A Little Free Library along the trail in case you need a reading break!

Modern mile markers are all along the way - some with the original railway mile markers still in sight

A billboard for car drivers on the road next to the trail. 
It needs to add "6 miles on the left" for cyclists and runners
since the Little Traverse Wheelway goes right along the back side of Kilwins.
Yummalicious chocolate, caramel apples and ice cream. Well worth a refreshment break!

A very interesting spot to explore along the trail

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Enjoying the Arts

Oh so many artistic delights yesterday, starting with a run to - and perambulation through - the North Central Michigan College sculpture garden. Pieces have been donated through the years by local philanthropist, Jack Harris, and the garden is always worth a visit.

The afternoon's art involved picking up the sign for my folks' old shop, The Basket Shop, from the woman who bought the shop from my folks and who recently sold it to a couple who turned the shop into something other than a basket shop. I was thrilled to have learned that the sign still exists - having been made for my folks in 1961 by John Duvernay (classmate Wendy's dad and whose family welcomed us to town with open arms) - and am extremely thankful that Audrey was willing to give it to me.

August 1, 2007: son, Paul, and I running past the shop
on the way to the finish line of my run from Boulder to Petoskey

June 18, 2018: touching up the paint on The Basket Shop sign,

And the evening of arts is thanks to a Great Lake...

Monday, June 18, 2018

Another week in Petoskey

The siren call of Petoskey is at full strength. Some snapshots of the week's doings:

  • Relaxing with a book at the bay is always a good thing - and it seems to be happening with a fair amount of regularity lately.

  • Taz and I were out running quite early one calm day and I figured the conditions were just right to run out onto the breakwater with the pup - no other folks and no splashing waves to get him all excited.
From the breakwater light looking back toward town
  • Mid-week we drove down to our Murphey cousins' cottage along the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore. It was a wonderful afternoon of conversation followed by a delicious dinner (our first introduction to Tagine cooking) and all within a spectacular setting. Thank you Murpheys! 

  • Saturday was hoppin'! First, one of my favorite runs: from Petoskey to Harbor Springs along the Wheelway and Beach Road (thus hugging the bay as closely as possible). Next, the Taste of the North fundraiser for the Little Traverse Historical Museum - and from there we walked up to the Old Town Emmet Farmers' Market and Food Truck Rally. We capped the day by attending an author talk with Charlie LeDuff. I tell you, there's a lot happening Up North!
Looking out toward open water from the far end of Little Traverse Bay
Looking back toward Petoskey from along the bay toward Harbor Springs
Taz heard we were going to "TASTE"!

Old Town Emmet Farm Market & Food Truck Rally
Connie & me ready for author talking
  • That brings us to Sunday, Fathers' Day - which we started with a lovely brunch at the Bay View Inn followed by the excitement of the Wings Over Northern Michigan air show in Gaylord. A darn good Fathers' Day for Mister Kendall (the best part undoubtedly being the phone calls from his offspring!).


Sunday, June 10, 2018

Kendall's Day

Today is Kendall's birthday day! And a dandy one it was!

Of course the day started with a run (me and Taz) and walk (Kendall).
Taz gets to turn on the jet engines along a quiet stretch of shoreline
My run with Taz done, we rendezvous with the birthday boy along the waterfront and stroll back home together to get ready for the day's next adventure. 

And that next adventure is lunch at Legs Inn - a Polish restaurant in a little town north of Petoskey right along Lake Michigan. It's been there for years. In my younger days, my buddies and I would go there for a lively evening's entertainment with music from a jukebox where selections were about half and half polka and rock. Now it's an older crowd (pry everyone who partied there in the 1960s-70s) who come for the great Polish food and view of Lake Michigan.
The back yard of Legs Inn
Upon our return to Petoskey with full stomachs we relaxed for a bit - me with the pup and a book down by the bay.

With our energy supplies restored, we strolled uptown for a look at the "Back to the Bricks" classic car show - over 200 cars parked on all of Petoskey's downtown streets. It was quite the sight and the vintage cars fit right in with Kendall's birthday ;-)
Note the license plate!
And on this one, the bumper sticker

And, of course, no day in Petoskey is complete without gazing at the sunset...

Saturday, June 09, 2018

Views along a speed workout

I ran a ladder workout today. Sometimes it was a bit difficult to focus given the views along the way...

As per my training buddies' tradition in Boulder, I started the workout with strides (20 seconds fast, 40 seconds easy). The view as I wrapped up the strides:

The ladder progressed as 1- 2 - 3 - 4 - 4 - 3 - 2 - 1. The second 4 minute surge marked my turnaround point,  with a stellar pair of views. The first as I finished my furthest out stretch, and the second as I turned to finish the declining half of the ladder:

And as the ladder wrapped up and the cool-down began, the breakwater came into view.  A lovely cool-down it was...