To stave off the depression that often hits on holiday weekends, I headed off yesterday afternoon to Little Cottonwood Canyon.
I started running up the Little Cottonwood Trail. My plan was to get up as far as I could until I was stopped by snow. I was able to run about 1.5 miles until I had to throw in a few walking breaks. I need to work on my uphill running again this year. Last year I was able to run (ok – slog) the entire trail both ways at the end of the season. There were lots of mountain bikers, hikers and runners – so I didn’t worry about my safety like the last time I did this trail. A little after 3 miles there is a turn to the left where there is a parking lot, or a straight ahead trail. However, that section was under about 6 inches of running water and I didn’t want wet feet, so I just ran over to the road. After a brief hydration stop, turned around and ran the entire way back down the trail. I did find a nice bike tool way off the trail that must have flown out of some cyclists pocket.
At the end of the trail I decided that I wanted to get to 9 or 10 miles, so ran down the road a bit. Much to my surprise, I saw the parking lot for Bells Canyon Reservoir. Leslie Peterson showed me this trail last fall. I hiked to the top of the trail (jumping a bit as a snake slithered off the trail and freaked me out) and then ran around the reservoir. Almost at the end was a stream crossing that was really low last fall. However, it was about 18 inches deep and cold and fast and I couldn’t find a way across, so had to turn around and run back the way I came.
As I started running down the trail, I could feel my energy draining. I was only carrying a 12 ounce bottle of water with a Nunn electrolyte tab in it and between the heat and distance, was needing some calories. I was able to find a water fountain at the bottom of the trail to get some more hydration, but still had 1.5 miles uphill to get back to my Jeep.
It was a great run and I felt good, but I was definitely hot, tired and hungry when it was over. Thank heavens for the green chicken chili (especial) quesadilla at Bajio’s.