Summerland-Panhandle Gap

Last long training run before my race! It was in the upper 80s in Seattle today, so heading up to the mountains held more than one appeal. This training run was with my coach’s (Alpenglow) group, and it’s always fun to have the varied company. And Adam came out today! It was his first “real” trail adventure, and now since he’s training for his first 50K, we’ll be doing more of them…

I’ve run this section of the Wonderland Trail only once before (last year), and it was gorgeous, so I knew the work would be worth it in the end. And it was!

The wildflowers up at Summerland were amazing. Always fun to see fuchsia Indian Paintbrush instead of orange.

And at Summerland, the place I think of as “The Shire…”

And my favorite photo of the day! At Panhandle Gap, getting ready to turn around and head back. This was right after we saw two marmots hanging out amongst the rocks.

Post-run foot soak in ice-cold Frying Pan Creek. It. Felt. Glorious.

According to my Ambit 3 R, we did 12 miles with 2600 ft of gain. The way up was mostly a hike as it was still quite hot, and steep enough (or technical enough) to warrant it. The way down was quite fast, though, and Adam was cruising. (He really could be very good at this if he wanted, in my humble opinion.) I generally felt pretty good, although my left knee was bothering me throughout, and it got steadily worse. It’s a patellar tracking issue that cropped up last year. I hope I can easily get it sorted with extra stretching and continued PT exercises. I just don’t need it to act up now!

While Adam and I were on the way down, I started thinking about the potential ultras we could do together next year…and then stopped myself. First, Baker Lake 50K. Then we’ll see. 😉

Also, a reminder that came up in discussion with Adam today that’s easy to remember with views like we had: “We don’t have to do this, we get to do this!”

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