Sadly, the sun left, along with the rare 70 degree temps.
Saturday I ran a 14-miler in cool and cloudy weather and averaged below goal pace the whole way. I was so excited that I didn’t shut up about this most of the night. (“It felt effortless,” I said, over and over until MM was sick of me. “I felt as if I were gliding.”)
Today we woke to a drizzly rain that lasted most of the afternoon. By early evening, we were restless and needing to get out so we headed up to Flattop Mountain.
Flattop is supposedly the most hiked mountain in Alaska. It’s about 3,500 feet (or somewhere around there) and is fairly easy yet rocky and unstable enough that someone dies on it every few years.
Today, June 2, it was still partially covered with snow.
|Welcome to my world, people. This is summer hiking, Alaska style.|
It was wet, muddy and cold. The wind was fierce yet exhilarating.
|Top of the peak. People were sliding and sledding down the snow fields.|
I hurt my knee coming down. I was crouched to jump over a rock and suddenly something behind my knee went bing!, and I collapsed to the ground in pain. I got up a minute later and the back of my knee ached but there was little pain, so I kept going.
|The valley. MM took this picture, I think.|
|Did I mention that the wind was fierce?|
|Running down the mountain.|
By the time I got home, my leg was throbbing, and when I tried to climb down the stairs to my writing room, my knee collapsed again. I’m icing it as I write. I’m hoping that it’s a sprained muscle or something minor. After the long, long winter it would totally suck to be injured most of the summer.
OMG, I forgot to mention: While we were hiking Flattop (and you saw how messy and snowy the trail still is), we passed three tourists, and the two women were wearing street shoes with heels. The one woman had on open-toed sandals with heels and was climbing a rocky and snowy mountain trail. They were about halfway up. I have no idea how they got down, since we were sliding in our trail shoes. Makes you wonder where their heads were. Plus it was cold up there. My hands were so numb when we got back to the car that MM had to put my seatbelt on for me. And this woman had on open-toes sandals and was hiking in the snow. Friggin’ unbelievable.
Monday: 12 miles over steep trails
Tuesday: 12 miles over more mild trails
Thursday: 9 miles, trails (with a huge (!) incline
Saturday: 14 miles, fastish pace
What I’m reading:
“The Mango Season” by Amulya Malladi
2 thoughts on “Goodbye sun, hello Flattop”
Hiking in some national parks feels like that too. You're hiking in flipflops? Seriously?! I guess I just don't hate my feet that much to make them suffer unnecessarily.
And I've never climbed Flattop, always wanted to but never made it.
THose shoes sound crazy! Hope your knee is okay. I always panic when anything is wrong with my knees or back as I think it an omen of things to come. It never is so it won't be for you either.