Saturday however I decided to do the Kahtoola snowshoe marathon on Jan 29th so I buckled up my snowshoes and ran the Days Canyon to Kirkmans Hollow loop I did a few week earlier. Instead of 5 1/2 hrs it took me 2:47. The conditions were perfect with the paths already packed down and I had a great time. The only disconcerting part was the amount of cougar tracks I came across. In two spots along the route were not a set of tracks but 8-10 tracks criss-crossing the area. Definitely cougar terrain. Felt good and am hoping to hold up for the whole 26.2 miles in a few weeks.
Martin Luther King Day I ran south BoSho. With temps near 50 it was a slush fest but all fun as I was able to get another 2 hours out on the trail. I've only found two problems with winter running neither of which affected this past weekends runs. 1st-Lack of daylight. Since it's only light 8-9 hours of the day, getting a run during working daylight hours can be tough. 2nd- Late winter slush. It's great but I have this issue of following the slush through the whole spring as I attempt to run the high trails. During winter it's fine but by May I'm tired of it, yet I'm never content running the low trails all spring. Come April-May I'm anxiously attempting the high country a bit too early and end up post-holing through May and into June.
It comes with the territory though and my affinity for the mtns calls regardless of the temps or conditions. One of the allures of trail running though is the various conditions one finds. I've had 3 races in which it snowed during the race...and those races define my ultra experience becoming icons of the sport. However I'll complain about the snow until it gets too hot....man I hate the heat....:)