Archive for August, 2011

Just another pretty trail run – up the hills behind Dave’s house

Some of the trails are obviously not used much.

This wasn’t any special run – just the usual beautiful Port Alberni trails. We ran from Dave’s house – just two blocks of pavement to get to where the trails started.

Dave was feeling a bit fatigued after a hard 3-day backpacking trip followed by 4 days of shift work and sleep deprivation. I was feeling crappy too, weak and dizzy and my stomach upset – presumably from something I had eaten.

So good – we were both on the same wavelength: long and slow and easy. So we grabbed the dogs, and headed out for a 1:40 jog on the trails, taking a few walking breaks on the way. Not a hard training run, more just keeping active and getting out there. Enjoy our pix! Read the rest of this entry »

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Fiona wants to sample our Port Alberni hills

Fiona is one of my old friends, from back when I first moved to Vancouver Island. We kayak-guided together for years out of Tofino.

She now lives in Victoria – but she’s a trail runner too, and she’s been intrigued by the photos that Dave and I have been posting of our runs – especially our hilly 4-hour China Creek/Copper Mountain run of a few weeks ago. So she came out last weekend, and I took her on an out-and back of the last quarter or so of that run.

Dave was running the Log Train Trail Half Marathon that morning. He was going to come with us anyway (two back-to-back 2-hour runs is nothing for an Ironman), but then he decided to leave a bit after us and just run up the first hill and meet us at the top of the lookout, and then come back down with us.

Almost all the way down to the inlet - just another pretty rainforest waterfall.

So Fiona and I headed out… steep switchbacks through the forest up the mountain side, an elevation gain of something like 200 m, then all the way down to Read the rest of this entry »

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Pulpmill Dump run

This run doesn’t have a sexy name but we still had fun!   I don’t know exactly what was dumped here but now its grass and poplar trees.  I go there sometimes when I need to be in the sun and its a few minutes run off the Copper Mountain Trail.  The dogs love it up there as there are always deer smells for them to run around and be dogs.

A quick stretch stop at the Copper Mountain trail lookout.

Gotta like hot summer days!

I tricked Jackie into doing a bunch of hill repeats to get this vid!

Xhosa taking a drink from my hydration pack.

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Solo run: Dave’s at work, so Jackie tries to find her way around the trails

It was a beautiful sunny day yesterday, but Dave had to work. I had to work, too… as a freelancer it is very hard to remain disciplined when it is so beautiful out. I managed to that in my dark little writing cave until after 5pm, then headed out to the sunshine.

Starting out on the trails, nearly 6pm.

There are some trails just up the hill from here that Dave has taken me on before. I am a great navigator on my own, but when I am following someone else I kind of stop paying attention. So even though I have run these trails before, I don’t actually know my way around. So I figured I’d go explore, figure them out. I offered to take Dave’s dogs out – ostensibly to give them exercise – but also because they’ve run this route 100s of times before and I knew they’d show me the way. But Dave said Read the rest of this entry »


West Coast Trail day run: Northern half, Nitinat Narrows to Pachena, 32 km

Well, this one took a lot of preparation. But was it ever worth it!

So we are not 100% sure that what we did strictly followed the Park rules. Apparently Pacific Rim National Park Reserve has not been able to keep pace with the “new” sport of trail-running (new???) so they are not able to get their heads around how to permit this. (We did try!). Supposedly you don’t need a permit for day-use (which is what we were). But at the same time, they do not recognize Nitinat Narrows as an official entry point. However, they would have permitted us to do the exact same route in the opposite direction.

But we are experienced runners and experienced wilderness travellers and we take safety issues, especially on a long and remote and challenging route like this, very seriously. We consider going the other direction to be much more risky because Read the rest of this entry »


Valdivia Chile

May 2011 I was sent to a small town in Southern Chile to find a Canadian who had been in a car accident and take him to Toronto.  Valdivia is a small forest industry town on a river next to the Pacific with a pulp mill.  The people were extremely friendly and the beer and wine was fabulous!  It felt oddly like home…

The view from my hotel room. Weather was like September in Port Alberni, foggy in the morning and hot in the afternoon.

Since my hotel was at the river I ran along the handy river walk path.

Ran by a bunch of smelly Sea Lions!

Ran through streets with many two story buildings.

Police watching some kind of protest at a College. They rode cool green dirt bikes!

The architecture was old Spanish or newer German.

I couldn't resist stopping at the woodpecker pub!

This beer was so good I spent some time to hunt down a 'Kuntsman Beer' shirt!

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Stamp Falls / Greenmax run

This run started at the greenmax entrance by the Alberni airpot and went along the stamp river.

Xhosa and Tank taking a break.

Jackie shooting a flower.

Jackie shooting the river.

Stamp Falls.

Another view of Stamp Falls.

Tank sniffing around.

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