Spring in my Garden!
When you live in a mountain resort town, life swings in a seasonal fashion. And we don’t just have the standards: ski season, mud season, lake season and fall. Things are further categorized into tourist season (winter and summer) and the off-season (spring and fall). This is Tahoe in the month of May: The skiers are gone, but the kids are still in school. The trails emerge from hibernation, while a scant few locals quietly explore them. The absence of campers, hikers and mountain bikers means dogs rule the parks and trails leash-free. Too cold for water skiing, but warm enough to sun bathe. Each day is a peaceful slice of off-season heaven.
With the onset of Memorial Day Weekend, the off-season is official over. So yesterday, the Friday before the weekend, I thought it a fitting celebration to go for a long run on one of my favorite local trails—the Flume Trail.
Cap and I set out for 22 miles of mountain bliss. In the summer, the Flume is one of the most popular trails in Tahoe, and for good reason. Yesterday, we saw a total of 5 people. (Two of them were ultra-running friends from Truckee, out for a training run in preparation for the TRT 50K.) The weather was a perfect 72, the trails were dry, and yet it was quiet as a winter morning after a storm.
There was so little snow, in fact, that we decided to make it 24 miles by venturing on to the Tahoe Rim Trail to run over Marlette Peak. This led to a bit of adventuring while navigating across the snow. I couldn’t have asked for a day filled with more solitude, beauty and fun, with my favorite training partner to wish a fond farewell to the season.
Cap trots along Marlette Lake
Cap checks out the view of Tahoe from the Flume Trail
Happy Gretchen on the Flume!
Emerging from the snow onto the summit of Marlette Peak.
Today, I happily made the trek down to Foresthill to help out at the Western States training camp. It too, was a celebration of the change in seasons. Peace and solitude are the sustinance of my trail time, but friends are the highlight. It seemed like almost every runner I knew was out on the Western States trail this morning!
I helped out Bob and Margie Read, along with a wonderful crew, checking in runners at the Deadwood aid station. Many of you asked why I wasn't running. Among other reasons: I got to greet, hug, and say hi to every single one of you! That never happens for me when I'm actually doing the running, and how fun is that!
Everyone was having such a great time. The weather couldn't have been better. I met a ton of wonderful people, whom I look forward to working with again at the race. Basically, for me, it was a celebration of the running community. You guys rock!