After less than 24 hours in Oxnerd, Chris was off to Cincinnati while I opted for a trip back home to see the folks. I am a slow packer so had wisely packed for the Vermont and Hawaii trips concurrently. (That was rather weird.) My travel day was one of blunders and potential mishaps, but everything worked out just fine in the end. The day started off with my going to the wrong airline terminal at LAX. Oops. Then I got randomly chosen for additional screening. Grrr. I got stopped for speeding--a first in my life!--in New Hampshire but drove away without a ticket--no small feat as I was driving a rental car with Massachusetts plates while carrying a California drivers license. And then I had to brake and swerve to avoid hitting a deer a couple of miles from my parents' house before FINALLY arriving in one piece. Yes!
One of the things I look forward to when going back home is running some of my old routes and hiking in the White Mountains. November's weather is usually pretty uninspiring, but last week was an exception: mostly sunny skies, moderate temps, and no ice or snow on the trails yet. One of my favorite places to run anywhere is the dirt roads of Barnet and adjacent towns of Peacham and Danville. Since I started running in the early 1990s, I've been drawn to this area for its quintessential Vermont beauty, solitude, lack of traffic, and kick-ass hill work. Over the years I've logged many, many miles and solved a few of the world's problems on these quiet country roads. Monday morning I ran one of my favorite loops in Barnet Center, an 8 miler. One vehicle went by the entire hour plus. I love that loop!
Tuesday my good friend Al and I did a northern Presi traverse: up Mt. Washington via Tuckerman Ravine, across Mts. Clay, Jefferson, Adams, and Madison. Look, no snow or ice! A little blustery though.
We were so happy to be able to do this trek in trail runners and not boots & crampons. The weather was so nice that the cog railway was even running!
Another day I did a nice 90 minutes on "the best trail network in North America," this bold statement the result of a Bike Magazine poll and one with which I agree... from May to October anyway!
My last full day in VT/NH a small group of old & new friends laughed our way across a Moriah-Carter-Wildcat traverse, a gnarly 18.5 miles and 8000 feet of vertical in the Whites, again with good conditions for this time of year. It was nice to be back in my old stomping grounds for some 4000 footer bagging AND to witness this trio, who were lucky to survive the recent NH moose (hunting) season unscathed. Yay moose!