Friday, July 24, 2015

Mt Whiteface

Wednesday was the usual 24 at work. I spent almost 2 hours that morning getting our truck in order after it was left in a shambles by the other crew. 3 hours later, we had to put the truck out-of-service for a bad coolant leak, so Michelle and I spent another hour getting our replacement truck in order to run it the rest of the day. WTF. We had a few runs during the day, followed by a transfer to Maine Med and then a middle of the night 911 call. 4 hours of sleep. Ha ha. Woke up Thursday morning, I mean an hour later, to shower and then head to the Tamworth base for my 10 hour shift. We did our truck check and then Sol and I headed to Rosie's for breakfast. I was STARVING. I had to eat dinner around 5pm the night before and had had nothing since. I finished my food way before Sol. Ha ha. It was a nice breakfast. Sol and I get along really well, and we're almost exactly a year apart, so it's nice to have someone my age to work with on Thursdays. After breakfast, we made the other crew take the first 911 that came in (since we took first call last week), then it was a lazy day for the next 3 hours until it was our turn. All of my road running in Tamworth has paid off because I knew exactly where the house was located; I'd run past it recently. That definitely helps when you have such a huge coverage area. That call put us out of base until around 4:30pm. At 5pm, I was done and ready for my run.

After doing Passaconaway last week, I decided that Whiteface was next on the list, so I drove over to the Ferncroft Trailhead to do an evening run up there via the Blueberry Ledge Trail. The trail is pretty gradual for the first 2.5 and then gets really steep. I was having fun with it, though, and very surprised to not have my usual Thursday evening slugfest. I think the weather helped. It had to be in the low 60s on the way up. The trail had some awesome viewpoints on the way up. Just REALLY beautiful with views of Winnipesaukee, Squam, Ossipee Lakes. By the time I got to the top, it was in the 50s, and I actually started to get cold quickly. I stopped on some high rocks where the Blueberry Ledge Trail ends to check out the view and take pics (Yes, can you believe it? I took pictures. Selfies even!).
Wearing a singlet from one of my MANY club/teams

Squam Lake

Mt Washington in the far back

Chocorua out there in the back

I noticed that I wasn't at the highest point, so I ran up the trail more until it started to go down on the Downes Brook Trail. I assumed I hit the summit, but according to Ryan Welts, I missed it. I guess there's a cairn marking the summit there somewhere. I'll have to search for it next time. I'm not bagging peaks for any real reason, so missing actual summits isn't a big deal to me. I'm just running mountains because I love to run mountains. Not to say I did. I'm not doing the 4000 footers or whatever. Maybe some day, but right now, I'm just enjoying my time on any mountain, especially after a 34 hour shift.

The run down was quick. It was getting really dark in the tree cover, and I didn't want to have to use my phone's flashlight again. At one point, a brown rabbit ran across the trail in front of me just as a bird was flying the same direction above it. It almost looked like they were moving together. It was cool to see.

I made it down with plenty of time to spare. 7.4 miles, 2,866 ft of elevation gain.

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