Bunchgrasser’s World

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Posts Tagged ‘Mt hood’

Running the 2009 Timberline Half Marathon

Posted by bunchgrasser on September 23, 2009

Mt_Hood_Timothy_ LakeKirsten and I ran the Timberline Half Marathon last Sunday and we both had a blast. It was Kirsten’s first half marathon and my first trail half marathon. The course took us on a beautiful loop around Timothy Lake that was mostly technical single track but opened up to dirt access roads in places. We also ran directly through several of the campgrounds around the lake.

The weather ended up being perfect with blue skies and plenty of sun. Although the majority of the trail was deep in the trees so we stayed pretty cool. Kirsten and I ran together the entire race, except once when we were separated accidently. I stopped to chat with a friend at the first aid station around mile 7 and she went on. The idea was that I would catch up, but she mistakenly followed a couple of ladies down a wrong trail and I ended up passing by her. I ran (really) hard for 2-3 miles and never caught up to her, so I eventually determined that she had to be behind me. I waited at the next aid station and she came cruising in a few minutes later. I was guzzling Powerade and nursing a bee sting. The yellowjackets were numerous and fierce on the trail.

As we neared the finish line we could hear people cheering and the announcer’s PA. Kirsten and I both raced the last 1/4 mile and crossed the finish line strong. I immediately started looking for any kind of food as I was starving. A couple of bags of salty chips and a cereal bar helped. We retrieved our shirts and finishers medals and headed to the car to relax a bit before heading back home.

Kirsten handled her first half marathon very well and I’m so proud of her. Before the race her previous longest run had been only 10 miles – so this race really pushed well beyond that distance. The actual distance of this race was more than 14 miles. It was also a pretty technical trail with lots of rocks, root and hills.

Personally, I loved it and can’t wait to do my next trail race. I’m hoping to do my first ultra in 2010 and this was a good starter. I’ll be looking for a 50k trail race someday soon I hope.


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I’m a proud owner of Vibram Five Finger KSO’s

Posted by bunchgrasser on August 14, 2009

Following on my earlier post about Vibram Five Finger shoes, I finally purchased my very own pair. Ok, part of the delay was my own procrastination, but once I decided to actually buy a pair I found it very difficult to do so. I live in a suburb of Portland, Oregon which is a very outdoor-adventure kind of city, so you would think a number of local stores would stock these shoes. And you would be wrong…

The unique design of these shoes convinced me that trying them on first would be a good idea. So, I made a trip to my local REI store and learned that they didn’t have any in stock. I checked around with other stores and received the same answer. I checked the Vibram website (which did list REI as a supplier) and found only two other stores in Oregon that carried the shoe. Unfortunately one store, Foot Zone was in Bend (3.5 hours away) and the other, Kayak Shed was in Hood River (less than 2 hours away).

Well, it just so happened that we decided to spend a weekend in Hood River for some hiking on Mt Hood this past weekend. Being the opportunist that I am, I factored in a side trip to the Kayak Shed to try on Five Fingers shoes. The folks at Kayak Shed were very helpful and I found the pair that suited my needs for fit/function (black KSO’s).

I’ve worn them a few times around the house – but I’m looking forward to some outside time to see how my feet and leg muscles handle the relative lack of structure and padding. They feel absolutely wonderful on – kind of like each toe is wrapped in a mini-hammock. Also, it goes without saying that I’ve gotten some snide comments from family members on the looks. I’ve started calling them my “monkey shoes” but we’ll see what name sticks.

Stay tuned for a follow up post later on…

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