Friday, February 1, 2019

Hawk Encounters, Snow and Running with a Good Friend

We had a relaxing rest of the day on Sunday, which was needed after my 20 road miles in the morning. We played games, talked with the grandparents, rearranged Sam's room and hung out. We also had a cool visitor to the backyard! I am a total bird nerd, even though I am most decidedly still learning, so I was thrilled when Ryan pointed out the hawk out back. I watched him/her for a while, cocking its head as if listening, hopping around here and there and then finally, dive bombing something under our shed. I'm assuming it was one of the mice that live out there, feeding off of the seeds and nuts that I put out for all the creatures. I *think* this hawk was a Sharp-shinned Hawk, but I had a few comments on Facebook that it was perhaps a Cooper's Hawk. Size-wise, it was more dove size than crow size so I think Sharp-shinned is more likely but either way, it was a new bird for me! 😍

Slept in on Monday rather than get out of bed for an early morning run and then got out in the darkness on Tuesday morning. It was only 4 degrees and just felt cold! Brrr. I wore my Hillsounds and had planned to head down to the river, but conditions were even icier than on Friday and Saturday and bumbling around in the dark on the ice was just not making me a happy camper so I aborted to the road and did a few miles out and back on Highland Green before having to put back on the Hillsounds for the return via the powerlines. Still, it was lovely to see Jupiter and Venus shining brightly in the glorious inky black sky and enjoy the orangey glow on the horizon near the end of my run. (5.0 miles)

I was planning to go out Wednesday morning, but it was snowing rather heavily when I woke up, and running in the dark in the snow on roads that are being plowed is just not a smart idea so instead I squeezed in a run between work and swim practice and headed to the bike path for a few miles in the late afternoon. The sun was shining, the wind was whipping but the path was clear, so I'm calling it a win! (5.0 miles)

On Friday, I had a chance to run with Shannon! A few years back, we were in a groove of meeting up early Tuesday mornings to run out on the Crystal Spring Farm Trails. But then schedules changed and she got injured and we have not run together in forever. She's training for Sugarloaf in May and I've been seeing her runs on Strava and thinking we really should get in a run together! Knowing I was only planning to do a short run near home on Friday before the TARC Yeti, I reached out to see if there was any chance she wanted to join me for a few miles. And amazingly, she had already lined up a neighbor to watch her youngest for an hour in the morning so she could get in her run, and it actually worked out. Yay running with old friends! We had a nice brisk run on the roads together, chatting away as we ran along. We looped through Brunswick and over into Topsham via the swinging bridge and back to her place. A nice easy few miles, and so great to catch up with a good friend. It has been way too long! (5.3 miles)

We're headed down to MA tonight so that Ryan and I can head over to Hale for the TARC Frozen Yeti on Saturday. It seemed like such a good idea a few months ago 😂😂 It's technically a 30 hour race, but anything over 30 miles suffices as a finish. I think we are both going in with trying to just reach the low bar here, and that will be more than enough! Definitely not racing but using this event as a chance to get in a solid day on my feet and enjoy the Hale rocks and roots 😉

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