Archive for category Vancouver Island

Another big day in the mountains of Strathcona: Castle Crag Mtn., Mt. Frink and Mt. Albert Edward

View back from the south flank of Mount ALbert Edward - I came around from the left, across the back of Castle Crag (the mountain on the extreme left), then summited Mt. Frink, then took the ridgeline down and to the left of it and back to Albert Ed.

View back from the south flank of Mount Albert Edward – I came around from the left, across the back of Castle Crag (the mountain on the extreme left), then summited Mt. Frink (centre), then took the ridgeline down and to the left of it and back to Albert Ed.

Well, the previous week I’d run/hiked to the top of Mt. Albert Edward and back – a total distance of around 32 km. I had considered adding on the side-loop that would go over Castle Crag Mountain and Mount Frink as well – but after receiving some advice that the navigation was pretty tough on this loop, I decided to bypyass it. That day. But this week, I was back!

Other than this first shot, all the pix were taken on my phone, so they are not that great. And then my phone died before I made my first summit. Stupid thing. Anyway, Read the rest of this entry »

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Jackie’s solo hike-run to summit Mt. Albert Edward, Strathcona Provincial Park – 32 km with >1km elevation gain

LDSCN2079pWow, now this was fun! It has been a very hot and dry summer – not great for the garden or the salmon, but very good for getting up in the mountains, with little or no snowpack. (Dave and I did that Della Falls/Love Lake run back in June, and there was no snow at all up there – whereas when we did that same Della Falls route in September, late summer, a few years earlier there was not only snow up there, but Love Lake was still totally frozen!) So, while Dave was away in Iceland, I decided to head up to Strathcona Provincial Park (less than a 1.5 hr drive from here) and do a run/jog up to the peak of Mt. Albert Edward. Read the rest of this entry »

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Hiking the Arrowsmith CPR Regional Trail, lookout and loop – in a dress!

LDSCN2056Oops. Well I did not mean to do this hike in a dress. I had dropped Dave and his daughter, Valerie at the Nanaimo ferry that morning (they were flying to Iceland for a week of hiking!) and figured I would hike the Arrowsmith CPR Trail loop on the way home, since I would be driving right past the trailhead. That would make for perfect training for my upcoming three-day ultramarathon, The Golden Ultra, which I would be running in less that two months – lots of Read the rest of this entry »

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I’ve wanted to do this hike for years – Mount Klitsa!

LIMG_0515Dave and I had a great mid-July hike with Ron and Brett up Mount Adder. They were planning a trip a couple of days later to Mount Klitsa, and invited us along on that too. I was totally excited about that – I’ve wanted to do Klitsa for years. My old Tofino friend, artist Mark Hobson, had told me about it, but somehow I never had a chance to get up there. Dave couldn’t go this time – he was packing, leaving for Iceland the next day – but I jumped at the chance! Read the rest of this entry »

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Summer hike up Mt. Adder – between Port Alberni and Tofino

LDSCN2023This was fun – hiking with new friends! We had met Ron through Dave’s sister – he is a trainer and runs a gym here in Port Alberni. Ron invited Dave and me, along with his friend Brett, to hike up Mt. Adder – one of the many mountains up near Sutton Pass, halfway between Port Alberni and Tofino.

You never know what you are up for when you do a tough hike with Read the rest of this entry »

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Mt. Wesley Traverse.

Jackie is still in Patagonia so Rich, Xhosa and I decided to tackle the Mt. Wesley Traverse. This trail is the ridgeline over the top of the mountains across from Cameron Lake.

Trail sign from rail line.

Trail sign from rail line.

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Made it through the Comox Valley Half-Marathon last weekend!

LIMG_7888Well, some day I will actually run a decent half-marathon. My best marathon time is 3:56, so you’d think I’d be able to run a half in 1:55 or less. But something always seems to go wrong for me – injury or illness. Well, this time, running the Comox Valley Half-Marathon, the problem was respiratory stuff: a cold I came down with over five weeks ago, which turned into bronchitis.

So of course that affected my training – although I did manage to continue training at some level through it all (experimenting with HIIT, high-intensity interval training, which meant very short but high-intensity workouts on the exercise bike rather than doing much running). I also could do weights.

So basically I entered the race with my legs feeling great and strong, but my cardio fairly poor, and my lungs still not healed. I went there with my friend Gail – we got a hotel and had a nice Thai dinner the night before, and were very appreciative of the generous 11am race start time. So at least we were having fun!

Gail was hoping to run under 2 hours, and I honestly didn’t have any idea of what time I would take. I told Gail I could be anywhere between 2 hours and 2:15 – possibly even more. The whole route is an out-and-back: a gentle uphill out and downhill back. I figured I would go as fast as I could conservatively sustain going out – and if I was still up to running, I would aim for a negative split coming back.

Highlights on the way out were seeing a bunch of crazy people on the side of the road, wearing weird wigs and blowing kazoos – and realizing that they were Ryan and Andrea! (They used to live here in Port Alberni). And also the huge dead tree on the side of the road with an eagles’ nest and the two eagles watching over us.

I made it to the turnaround in 1:01.45. I realized it would be tight to make 2 hours, but it wasn’t impossible – I’d have to make up 3 and a half minutes on the way back – so I went for it.

I calculated my time at every kilometre marker, and was running around a 5:30 kilometre. But I needed to do around 5:20 to make my 2 hours. Would I have enough left in me to sprint in the final 2 km?

By the 19k mark, I realized I wasn’t going to make it. I let off the pace, and finished in around 2:01:20 (my official race time was 2:01:39 – they’re not showing the chip times for some reason, though). Oh well, it still is a half-marathon Personal Best for me (as pathetic as that is! leaving me lots of room for improvement). And I did achieve a pretty good negative split – under an hour on the return. (Gail achieved her goal too, finishing in 1:58!).

Honestly, I am pretty happy with running that time considering the health problems I have had. Some day I will run faster… Big thanks to Ryan and Andrea for hanging out on the course for my return, so Ryan could get this great photo of me (smiling even)!

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