Off I set to see sunshine and good views. I hadn't seen the north side of Mt. Helena in awhile, and with the beetle infested tree removal, the landscape looked way different. Still beautiful now that you can see the green trees, but no more of the shady escape as before.
View from Ambrose Trail
Maybe all the previous miles added up, but by the time I started the first climb up to the saddle, I was dead legs and no pep. My average pace quickly slowed. The additional miles weren't needed but I decided to see what would happen with some experimentation. In went a Saltstick, a mini Luna bar and water. Powering up, I did ATTEMPT to run the switchbacks, but it was more like a crawl. Once I reached the saddle at 9 miles, I remembered the coveted pineapple Gu Roctane.
Me bonkingWowza! That stuff worked like a charm, and I was back in the game. The ridge was beckoning with views of snow capped mountains in every direction. It was cold though when exposed to the wind.
My planned ten turned into more as I discovered a new trail that had to be explored. Unfortunately, I couldn't find my way back the way I intended, so had to do an extra mile on road before I found the car. 14 miles total - 11 of which were on trail!!!!
The new header picture is a happy me celebrating the first long trail run in OVER A YEAR! No Achilles or ankle pain the entire way. Can we say bring on Elkhorn?