|Santiago Trail - Cleveland National Forest|
Some runners get down on mountain bikers, and I have said a few critical words about them, but overall I'm happy to share the mountain with them. This stems from an incident that happened to me several years ago when I was out on Santiago Trail with another runner who ran out of water. After she drank all of my water, she started to suffer from heat exhaustion, became dizzy and nearly collapsed. I quickly flagged down the next mountain biker who was happy to share his water. Ever since then I gladly share trails with mountain bikers.
I made my way up Dreaded Hill, down to Santiago Canyon Road and then up to Santiago Trail and on to Old Camp. Modjeska Creek was the highest I've ever seen it, no doubt from the snow pack that is quickly melting on Saddleback Mountain. I didn't have my Garmin with me so I'm guessing the total climbing for the day was in the range of 4,500', which isn't bad for an estimated 26 mile outing. Getting time on my feet in terrain that simulates my upcoming races is the best training I can do.
My climbing legs are nearly back after running the Old Goat 50 miler two weeks ago. Next on the docket: Leona Divide 50 miler on April 30, my last 50 mile race for the So Cal Ultra Series. After that come the big boys: Bishop High Sierra 100k, San Diego 100 mile and then Angeles Crest 100 mile. All of these races are between now and July!
Deep breaths now....