On Wednesday night after work, I completed my first trail run. And I have to say that despite the first four-ish miles being uphill, I actually quite enjoyed the run. Mark, Amanda and I headed down to Kerhonksen, NY to Minnewaska State Park to run the Summer Solstice 15K. Did I mention that it poured all day on Wednesday? Yeah, it did. We went any way. Wind, rain, snow, sun, we seem to have an addiction to these runs regardless of the weather conditions. The unfortunate part is that the park is beautiful, but due to the rain most of what we saw was fog!
I can safely say that the bulk of the first three + miles was up hill. We were indeed running up a mountain. There was quite a bit of mud due to the all day rain so there was a good deal of puddle jumping and the like. Again, it was my first trail run so a lot of this as well as minding the roots, rocks and etc was relatively new to me. Anyway, somewhere around or shortly after the four mile mark the trail leveled out. While it was still rolling we were no longer just climbing. We were running along carriage roads at this point so it was crushed stone that was relatively packed. I can easily say that at this point for me the run became pretty enjoyable and it remained that way for the rest of the course.
With about a mile left to go the sun peaked out a little and cleared things up. We saw some nice waterfalls and there was beautiful blooming mountain laurel all along the way. They did admit at the beginning of the race that it wasn’t actually a 15K but was really more of a 14K. I ended the run with my Garmin reading 8.4 miles. Who knows. All in all it was a great experience and despite being wet, muddy and a sore (wow, I need to do hill work) I will definitely do it again next year!