Wednesday, October 31, 2012

My thoughts on the ING NY Marathon

My thoughts mean absolutely nothing.  I have never run NYC and probably never will. (I'm just not much of a road runner, and even less a fan of an event over a couple of thousand runners.)

This is Wednesday, Halloween, and "the show must go on" in NY..  It went on, after 9-11, so it shall now.

But 9-11 was SEPTEMBER 11, and the marathon was a full month later..more or less.  As of today, tunnels are flooded, subways are flooded.

People who live in  this area are without power, maybe food and water.  But you want to bring in 20,000 out of town runners, and give THEM food, power, shelter, water?  Really? 

I do understand that this is about $$$$$$$.  The runners have already committed.  They are not getting back their race fees; they probably won't get their flight money back, nor hotel rooms.  Okay, I do understand that IS a big investment for most runners.   But do you really want to take away resources from people who really need it?  To just run a foot race?

I do have big goal races myself.  Hardrock has been cancelled in the past for both snow and fire.  I would be unhappy myself if my spring race was cancelled,  one week out.  But if it meant, that first responder, that fireman, police officer, medical person, was going to help out with the present emergency that exists on the Jersey Shore,  I hope I would be okay with that.

As my friend Nick said, press "pause" for 2012, and return with a stellar 2013 ING NYC race.  It is no body's fault; not George W, not the Mayor, not the city, not the NYRR.  It was simply some unfortunate circumstances.  "Trying to reason with Hurricane Season"  an old Jimmy Buffett song.

In Search of the Sincere Pumpkin Patch

I adopted my  "just jump in" strategy for today's run.  I donned too many warm layers, jammed the earphones in, turned the Garmin on, and exited the house.

It was 37 degrees and lightly raining.  We got some high winds and rain from Storm Sandy.  She kind of thwarted my plan to go run trails today.  I knew they would just be messy mud, and it would be more mucking and hiking than running.  With temps and rain, I wanted to run as I needed to be able to generate heat!

I was only a bit overheated for the run.  The wind would hit on the ridge, and I was glad to have my great eVent rain jacket on.  The eVent fabric is a waterproof breathable fabric.   REI does not seem to carry any eVent jackets anymore.  Check out this very interesting article from Outside Magazine about it.

I spotted one goat herd, one flock of sheep with its alpaca shepherd, and no pumpkin patches. Pretty glad to be done with this run, despite being snuggly warm in my gear.

I just wanted to give a shout out to fellow NEO TC member, Julie Curtis.  Go give her some blog love comment or on Facebook.  Julie's little dog,  Emme, AND Julie were attacked by a dog the other day. 

According to her latest FB post, Emme has made it through surgery ok, and will get to go home tomorrow.  Send her and Emme some positive energy please!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Just Jump In

So the schedule called for 6 mile run, on my 9am-7 pm work shift.

I really hate to work the 9-7, or try and fit a workout in on this day.  Cuz the work shift just sucks up just most of the day.  I feel like I am trying to eat two meals on this shift (with only one lunch break.)

It was up to me to fit this 6 mile run in.  I elected to do it pre-work, in the morning.

That meant I had to get out the door by 615am by the latest, so I could be back about 715 am, and still shower and eat.

I had already packed and pre-journalled my food on WW for the day.  Yes, some days you have to be uber organized.

I also had my kit ready to go.  Tights, merino wool shirt, rain jacket, gloves, headlight, Zune.

I woke up, drank some coffee, surfed my emails and the interwebs, and kept an eye on the time.

Then I donned my gear; sync'd the Garmin, started the Zune.

I did not check the temperature outside; I could already hear the rain.

I was actually a bit overdressed but I didn't really start to overheat until mile 4 or so.

This all took part in the dark.  I took a bit of solace that Slim used to (??) run regularly in all sorts of weather, at     530 or 6 am with Val.

I also had a reflective vest on over my rain jacket.  I did not encounter many cars out there, especially coming at me (where I jumped well off the road). 

It was a slow run, and it did stress me, I could feel it later in the day, in my shoulders and neck.  Next early morning run, I will just run my normal 6.4 miles on the backroads without cars.

After I showered and had breakfast and vaulted outside to get to work, I was struck how nasty and cold the morning was. 42 degrees and raining.  Same conditions I had run in, one hour or so prior.

Very pleased that I had just dove into the run, no whining, no excuses, just execute the run!

I am also very happy that tomorrow is an OFF day, with the rains moving into our region!

Monday, October 29, 2012

Staying On Plan with WW

I spent the entire weekend "up north" in the Cleveland area.  I was resolved to keep logging my food and not make bad food decisions while I was there.  And I did NOT!

Saturday:  Drove to Cleveland at 530 am.  Got a Sheetz Ham Omelot for 6 WW Points-yes, I looked it up!

I was at the IX Center in Cleveland then working a table.  I ate some beef jerky and a Greek Yogurt that I had  brought with me.

This sustained me through the afternoon that I got to spend shopping with my Mom, good times!

My husband and I ate dinner at a Lebanese resturant, where I did use the WW system to guage my points, so I did the best I could.  Then relaxed with some wine afterwards.

Sunday-the hotel was right next to a Dunkin Donuts.  I got coffee and two chocolate Kreme donuts-14 WW points for that! (My daily allotment of points is 26).

Good thing I was going for a run that "earned" me 30 AP! (Activity Points!) I also did not need any other fueling on this 12 mile run, after those two donuts!

I finished, showered, and was soooo hungry.  Luckily, I opened my cooler, to find bananas! And more Greek yogurt. This, with a Vitatop Muffin, satiated me temporarily.  I was very proud to say I staved off all the fast food in the area, eating an apple, string cheese, and another banana, until I was driving home and got some sushi on the way home.

I made very good food choices over the weekend. Now to keep that up, this week!!

Sunday, October 28, 2012

New Trail Rocky River Reservation

This weekend found me in Cleveland.  I had free time in the morning, but needed to be back to help my husband at noon,  so I decided to explore some of the trails in the Rocky River Reservation of the Cleveland Metroparks.

 It was not raining when I started, but I donned the rain jacket because it was so windy.

I was wearing tights, a long sleeved shirt, fleece  headband, and gloves.  I felt a bit sheepish as I passed some male runners in shorts and short sleeve shirt.  Perhaps I was a bit over dressed.

The rain started right as I hit my turn around point.  As this time, I was really happy to have the rain jacket with hood on!

I really don't know where I meandered, I followed the bridle trail north, right beside the Rocky River.  It was nice and scenic, pretty yellow leaves on the trail.

Right back at my vehicle was the overlook for the Gorge, in Berea.  I had never been here before!  (I grew up in this area.)

It was very pretty!

It was a nice run.  It was fun to run on some new trails, and to embrace the weather rather than hiding out from it.  The quicker one gets used to the less than stellar elelements of the late fall and winter, well maybe spring will come even quicker.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

It's a Horse, Of course

The schedule called for a 7 mile run this am.

Since the normal "bread and butter" 10K 'around the block' is actually 6.4 miles, I didn't think it would be hard to pad some extra extensions on.

I did start out in the dark.  I did a little 0.1 mile out and back on the State Route, before I hit my normal dirt road side round and start of the loop.  I really didn't want to surprise Scooter (the neighborhood Bloodhound who runs loose) in the dark.

Dawn was breaking and I was about 1.xxsomething into my run when  Scooter popped out of the round hay bales on the side of the road to join me for a short jaunt..but he didn't scare me, as I was expecting him to be in the vicinity somewhere...Scooter is getting lazy out of his puppy year and just left me as I went down into the valley.

You can really feel the temps in the ridges and hollows..or "hollers" as they are called.  I was comfortable starting out, in short sleeved shirt and shorts, as I got to the creek valley, it could  a little cold, especially on the hands, but then I was quickly climbing on the other side, up..

I pass the Amish Farm about mile 5 into my run (about mile 5.5 today, with my extra addition mileage).  I hear, kind of a funny noise, and I keep looking behind me, expecting to see some dog bearing down on my back side.  But nothing.

Then, a clop clop! Clop Clop!  There is an Amish horse, alone, trotting down the road at me!!!

(My husband asked, how I knew it was an Amish horse, did it have a hat and beard?  All I can say, it was not a horse than an "English rider" would be on.  The horse was bigger than your usual English riding horse. "English" means "non-Amish" in this context.)

Well, I don't know what to do. I stop.  The horse gets closer, coming downhill, at me.  Where is its owner? And buggy?  Was there an accident, and the horse got free?

I do say, out loud "Whoa Horsey Whoa!!" also deciding I'm not tackling this beast who weighs 800 lbs or so more than me. 

The horse trots on down the road.

A few minutes later, a small Amish boy comes walking down the road.

"Hey, is that your horse?"  He acknowledges that (good he speaks English; many Amish children do not) 

and indicates that he just let the horse go ahead, it's heading for its stable there at the barn.

So I continue with my run.  Just another day in the life in "God's Country" as it seems to be known out here.

Amish are our neighbors and a way of life out here.  Where we live, in Ohio, has been one of the fastest growing communities of Amish in the past few years.

For us, they are good neighbors.  They really do not want to be involved with the "English"  (what we folks are) because that is just part of their separtartism.  My husband has business dealings with them so we are familiar with many of the families and various sects in our area.

Being out there on the road with buggies is just a way of life down here. My run yesterday, I was almost home, on the state route, when the Amish buggy overtook me, but then we were both on the uphill. I slowed a bit to let the horse and buggy get ahead, I didn't want any car drivers getting distracted with both a runner and an Amish buggy on an uphill to contend with!

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Scared To-Do List

 I don't know if I ever posted this?

This is not original from me, although I have long since lost where I clipped it from...

Fair game for the Scared To-Do List:
  • Something you’d like to do, even once….if it wasn’t so scary.
  • Something you wish you could do…if you had the guts.
  • Something that would make a huge difference in your life…if you just did it.
  • Something that intrigues…but yet, intimidates you.
  • or simply, stuff you put off…too scary.
You get the idea.

What is on your scared To-Do List?

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

A Slight Improvement

I just got from my mid day run.  With the temperature in the 70's, there was no way I was going for the shorter of my loop bread and butter runs.  I took off for the 10K (6.4mile) option.

Scooter was lazing in the sunlight and barely lifted his head as I went by.   It was sunny, it was warm, and it was very breezy, so I didn't get that over heated.

The quads were still a little stiff-I had just put 27 miles (and 8000 feet of elevation gain and descent) on them Friday. 

About mile 3, I felt nice and warmed up.  Although I still walked up the big hills, I powered down them a bit harder.  It is much easier to run down hill hard on the dirt road behind your house than on single track in the Virginia wilderness alone..

I stopped at my neighbor's mailbox, my traditional stopping point for this route, and was surprised to see 1.16 on the Garmin!  That was not with really pushing the pace, just the downhills, and just a few days post TWOT loop!

Now I am off to play on the slackline a bit, repot some herbs, create a couple of stepping stones, and any other activity to keep myself outside for the rest of this gorgeous day!

Go Watch This

I just watched an amazing video on the first disabled ascent of El Cap.

"The right attitude and one arm will beat the wrong attitude and two arms every time"

This was filmed and produced by Duct Tape Then Beer, which is spearheaded by Fitz Cahall, who is also the creator of the wonderful Dirtbag Diaries. 

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Alone Ponderings

I'm back home now, from my aborted 100 mile solo attempt.

This is not a race report, or even a 'run report' as they are not allowed.  I will just share some observations on my nice day out on the The Wild Oak Trail, or TWOT, as it is affectionately known.   Some of you might be familiar with the trail, either from the TWOT events, or from Grindstone.  From the map above, you run the Grindstone course from around mile 9 to zero, and then from mile 27 up to around Little Bald Knob and then take off for Reddish Knob, I believe.

I am pretty fearless.  But one of my biggest fears, in trail running, is getting hurt and being all by myself--which is how I run most of my trail runs, just for the simple fact of where I live.

I've run in the daylight and at night by myself in various state parks close to me, and it's never really bothered me.  But these places were much closer to population.  Both parks I run in, it's not that far to the nearest road.  But this area in Virginia is far more remote.

That is what kept me from going on.  I tried hard to convince myself, in the last two miles of Loop One.  But ultimately, I just didn't want to .  That alone factor did me in.

Now I did run a night loop alone at TWOT last winter, but Slim was also on the course, we crossed paths (we were running opposite directions) and he was waiting for me to run Loop 3, so that was entirely different. 

I will say this solo attempt was not my wisest decision, perhaps I would have been better off with the solo attempt at Mohican instead of Virginia, but I had the free four weekend, so  I thought, why not?

So concludes my official running season of 2012.  It was a little strange and different, with the Hardrock trip and attempt.

Hardrock is not on the calendar for 2013, as I am not entering the lottery (I promised my husband I would not--yes it IS killing me...).

"If you always do what you have always done,  you'll always get what you always got"

I am looking forward to improving as a runner for 2013.  Doing things a bit differently I hope.  MMT is going to be my "A" Race for 2013.  Do things a bit different, so I change up-speed up!-the results for 2013!

Friday, October 19, 2012

And I am back!

Well, almost back, I am crashed in a hotel room in WV.
The first loop took longer than planned. So I knew the next 3 loops would be slower.  And I still had to drive home Sunday. So I waved off my pacer for loop 3.
I tried really to get myself out there for loop 2, I had almost convinced myself, but I was just too scared to be out there, all alone, for a night loop.
Oh well. If you never try, you will never know if you can succeed.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

I am Here

I have cell coverage at the trail head.

The aid is stashed. I was surprised to see the campers along the road. Big difference between October and February. Hey there might even be people out here this weekend!
I am snuggled up on my vehicle. It's not even 7pm but it is dark. I'm going to finish my beer and go to sleep. Even if I wake up at 5am, I will get a good long night of sleep.
I will need to rearrange my vehicle in the morning, so my return trips will be organized.
I still wonder how I get myself into these things. All will be well. The colors are gorgeous here right now.
Okay, signing off until later!!!!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Wired and Tired

It seemed like a good idea at the time.

I have wandered through the entire gamut of emotions this past week.  I  have finally settled down into anticipation.

I've got everything packed, but still need to make sandwiches and pack my cooler. I'm slightly less organized than I like to be, but I am thinking I should have plenty of time when I get to the trail head, in daylight, to re-organize and write up some notes to myself.

I gave people at work the usual vague answer about what I was doing.  One tech asked if I was doing a vision quest.  Perhaps I am.  I shall see what transpires over the next 48 hours.

I am driving to Virginia on Thursday, to start my run early Friday morning.  I plan on finishing my run in the early morning hours of Sunday.  It's a bit to wrap my head around, running into two nights, but that isn't my style, anyways.  I will focus on one loop at a time.  Run from my landmarks, to my aid station caches, back to my vehicle.  The weather looks good.

I shall see if I can get an update out from the trailhead!

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

OMG This is close!

Wheee...I leave on Thursday morning.  I hope to have everything packed and sorted and ready to go.

I'm going to go run a solo 100 miles on Friday. Well, the loop is actually 26 miles, but who is counting..

And it will take me more of Friday, well all day Friday, all day Saturday, I should finish up in the wee hours of Sunday.  That will give me time to crawl back into my vehicle, and sleep for a good few hours until attempting the drive home (six hours.)

It now looks like I will not be totally alone for 48 hours. Quatro has a tail-gating date somewhere in the area on Saturday, and knows there is nothing like sleep deprivation to really hustle that tail-gating buzz on, so he is joining me for my 3rd loop, which will be in the late (or early hours) on Saturday.

This news has really settled me down somewhat.  Just knowing I should have company, out there, at some point, reassures me.

Also, Eva P might come out on Friday. Now Eva loves this trail.  Eva is also the MMT winner of the last few years.  Her pace and my pace do not exactly match up.  But hey, if Eva accompanies me, I bet that will get my butt to speed up a little bit more than usual!

My gear and food is kind of ready.  I need to stuff the clothing options into bags, and sort the food stuffs.

I will have two food caches on the trail ( a road is near by) and then my vehicle. So, three aid stations.

The weather is looking excellent-high of 65, low of 42 for both Friday and Saturday.

Nothing to do except execute.!!!!

Monday, October 15, 2012

Another Good Run

I feel like I've had so little energy the last couple of weeks that these runs, where I do have energy and feel great, feels a bit abnormal.  Here's hoping I'm getting my body back to where it *should* be.

10K around the block (actually 6.4 miles) in pics:

Our fall foliage is probably at its peak or just past.

Up the hill, the Gump dogs live at the top

The pic doesn't do the colors justice, this was dead in front of me on the road

Our of them


Ran the 6.4 miles in 1.14, about six minutes faster than average.  I wasn't pushing it much,  only on one good downhill, I glanced at the Garmin and picked up the pace, no reason not to run fast downhill!!

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Another Good Run

Another good run on the bike trail near work yesterday afternoon.

  I got out of work a little bit early, the weather was nice-chilly but sunny.  I had a variety of clothes in my duffel bag, I will have to remember this.  Keep an assortment of clothes, so you have no excuse!
 I chose shorts and a long sleeved shirt.

The legs felt good, not heavy, on the first mile.  Started to try and make an effort on mile two.

On the turnaround, I made a concerted effort to keep the pace up.

Mile four, I was all about increasing the pace.


Mile 1 10.13
Mile 2 10.02
Mile 3 9.30
Mile 4 9.05

Negative splits baby!  (See, I do know what that term means..)

It was good to have energy after work.  Running in the daylight hours also helps.  I'm cognizant that this won't be happening in the near future!

Friday, October 12, 2012


For the record, I do not have FOMO.

Because I AM missing out.

The Oil Creek Races-50K, 100K, 100 mile-are this weekend.

So is the beautiful West Virgina Trilogy.

I will be at work.


I am happy to be employed, and have a stable job, and be the bread winner.

But I would REALLY like to be with you all out on the trails this weekend.


The Trail Goddess

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

A Good Run!

A good run, in a surprising location, the Great Guernsey Bike Trail.  Usually my legs are very heavy and lots of runs are "blah" here.  But the weather was decent, nice and chilly but pleasant chilly, I ran it in a skirt and a long sleeved shirt.

I felt good on the first mile, which is usually where the concrete leg syndrome is, but I felt nice and chipper even after the long work day.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012


The word for the day is "trepidation."

A piece of advice?  If you are planning on running 100 miles, all by yourself,  self-supported, all alone,
don't watch 127 Hours 11 days out.

I am sure everyone knows what I am talking about, Aron Ralston who, after getting trapped in a canyon when a boulder shifted and trapped his arm, after six days he cut off his own arm and then got himself out of the canyon and saved his own life.

I had read most of the book-I had to skip the part where he actually cut his arm off-but had never seen the movie until now.

Well, I had to kind of fast forward past the arm cutting scene, but it was a powerful movie.

It kind of creeped me out.  It has me thinking of all these various scenarios on what could happen to me out there.

This feeling has come and go. While at work yesterday, I had perked up and was back on doing this project 100%.  It's just hiking in the woods.  People hike in the woods, they travel up and down the AT and PCT, all I am doing is 4 loops on the same section of trail!

While I might be all by myself, I do plan on leaving-emailing-several folks with my plan-folks that would know exactly where I will be, having been on the trail.  I will find out what county I am in and put the sherrif department phone number in my phone.

I will carry my phone. I  had cell coverage at the trailhead, so I want to post an update of  some sort of each loop, to keep me accountable.

This is actually the biggest worry I have always had with being a solo trail runner.  It's the idea of injury, that can change your definition of fun for the day and turn it into something different.

Just because I am scared doesn't mean I shouldn't do it.  And besides, the scared feeling comes and goes...

Monday, October 8, 2012

Packing the Duffel Bag

Packing the duffel bag-with workout clothes-can be a challenge some mornings.

Especially when you haven't decided what-or if-you will do after work, ten hours later.

Do I go to the gym? If so, what will I do at the gym?

Do I go to the flat bike trail?  If that is the plan, what is the weather?  Do I bring shorts, capris, gloves?

Okay.  I threw shirt, shoes, socks, bra, long sleeve top, short sleeve top, visor into bag.

I got ten  hours at work to contemplate what to do after work.

Happy Monday all!

Sunday, October 7, 2012

New Location

Just for my slack line..

I had mastered walking across it between the 2 trees we originally strung it on.  But you had to walk through the barn and into the meadow.  Not that close to just go outside and jump upon.

Now it is inside the dogs' yard, pretty close to the house.  And I have about twenty five feet of line to walk, versus about 19 before.

So it is closer to the house, but the Shepherd better not decide to gnaw on my line.

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Labradoodle Attack

I finally decided on a route and got out on some roads here in the neighborhood I haven't been on, in a long time.  In fact, one of the dirt roads was one I ran in training, regularly, for my first marathon. 

It was another gorgeous fall day out there.  A bit windy, so chilly, but I worked the short sleeved shirt and the Moeben sleeves again.

View from local cemetery, top of the hill

I'm running down this road, and some dogs erupt into barking.  This labradoodle tears through his yard, through the woods, to challenge me on the road.

I guess he/she may have had their hackles up, but I can't tell, because it's a labradoodle.

Is a labradoodle just a mutt with a fancy name?  I mean, I have a Rottweiler/Chow mix dog; but I don't call him a Chowweiller, or a RottChow.  Perhaps I will now.  "Rottchow" with a little bit of attitude.

I go into my "hey nice doggy" speak but keep backing across the road (I had already moved across the road when the barking commenced.)  The owner came out of the house and the dog(s) eventually retreated to their driveway.

The only problem with running this route is the last two miles, which is on the state route that I live on, where everyone drives about 70 MPH, and there is no berm, the white line is the edge of the blacktop.  Still a good little run.

Followed by some slacklining fun:

See, I'm not that good at it yet

Friday, October 5, 2012


It seems like it's been a long week.

I got out of work yesterday, just a bit early, and went for a run on the The Great Guernsey Trail, which is just a paved bike path.  I don't know whether it is just the asphalt, or running after working 9.5 hours, that my legs just are so heavy on this.

My legs started to feel good, about 2.8 miles into the run, which was too bad, since I only ran 3 miles.

I haven't figured out yet what I want to do on Saturday.

I might go run on the Zoar Valley Trail, and park at a parking lot on the north side.  Run down to Camp Tuscozoar, for their pancake breakast, and then run back.

With my 100 run looming quite soon, I don't feel the need to put a huge long run in right now, even on very easy trails.

I will firm up plans soon.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Good choices

So I was starving at lunchtime. I knew I had a turkey pasta salad for lunch,but nothing else.
I wanted something else, but something filling and low in points.
What did I choose?

A fruit cup of red grapefruit,
A box of grape tomatoes ( won't eat all for lunch),
Small crudites of sugar snap peas, carrots, broccoli with some ranch dressing,
And a Diet Snapple.

Very happy with my last minute lunch additions!

Weigh In Day Thursday October 4 !!

Today's results:

Yahoo! That took care of last week 1.5 lb gain, so I did actually lose this week, despite repeatedly snacking on roasted almonds last night. 

Getting a solid result for almost sticking to On Plan makes it much easier to continue to carry on!

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Camp Tuscozoar and Area

I decided to take a little drive and check out the Zoar Valley Trail and Camp Tuscozoar area.

I had a little problem finding the parking at the Schoenbrunn side, but I think the ZVT at the southern end is all road.

Camp Tuscozoar is an old Boy Scout camp outside of Bolivar, Ohio.  I was going to write a little historical blurb about it, but it's kind of long! But interesting, read here!

I made my way north and arrived at Camp Tuscozoar.  I made my way through the Camp, and hopped on a trail to go north just a little bit to the Zoarville Bridge.  The Zoarville Station Bridge at is the only Fink Through-Truss bridge known to exist in the United States.  Of course, I've already blogged about this on my last trip to the area.

I then turned around to run south. I managed to see the trail sign for Pioneer Point, which promised a view.  It was a little bit of a climb, surprising in this area, but I was rewarded with quite a nice view.

Pioneer Point, an authentic Indian lookout, offers a panoramic view of the northern Tuscarawas River valley, where the river flows south from Zoar past the camp. Here, since 1925, first-time campers have placed stones upon a stone cairn. Former Camp Director I.W. Delp started the pile as a memorial to Revolutionary War soldiers who built and defended nearby Ft. Laurens in 1778-1779. Through the years, the stone cairn has also come to symbolize the spirit of Tuscazoar. In 1930 a group of boys led by Ralph Reichenbach spelled "Camp Tuscazoar" in white stones on the face. The letters can still be seen more than a mile away.

There is a huge cairn of rocks here, I didn't take a picture of it!  That's very cool.
The letters are still here, also, but I didn't get a picture, since I was right on top of them.

The "trail" on the southern end of the Zoar Valley Trail is an old abandoned rail road bed, which pretty much translates as "old jeep road".  It was very pretty today, with the autumn leaves changing.

I didn't run but a mile or so past the Dover Dam, as I remembered  I was pretty close to the only sushi restaurant in 80 miles and I was hungry.

Dover Dam

Tuscarawas River

Dover Dam
There is nothing real special about the Dover Dam, it was built just for flood control on the Tuscarawas River.

The Dam caused quite a  bit of problems for the Boy Scout Camp: "Authorities announced a new WPA project for the area, a huge cement dam and reservoir to be constructed just below the camp under the authority of the Muskingum Watershed Conservancy District. Plans called for water contained in the reservoir to be backed up into the camp's central area. In addition, the Cleveland & Pittsburg Railroad, which ran between the camp and the river, would have to be relocated to a higher, newly-built, right-of-way. In order to construct this new right-of-way the hillsides along the river, on which many of the camp buildings sat, would have to be blasted away."

But a compromise was reached: "Also, the Conservancy District agreed to construct an access culvert under both the old and new railroad rights-of-way to allow the scouts continued access to the river, and announced that the Dover Reservoir would be a dry reservoir, to contain water only when necessary to control flooding downstream. The old camp buildings were then demolished, the railroad relocated, and central camp rebuilt where it is today."

Shucks, when I saw the path that led to this tunnel, I thought I had found the super secret access.  It turns out this is the right of way under the rail road beds.

Speaking of railroad beds, since there is no longer a track here (that's what the ZVT is on) I was curious to find out when the line was abandoned or closed down.  Passenger service from Cleveland to Columbus (and consequently Akron to Hudson) ceased in 1951.

Once through, it was just a climb back up to the trail:

I only covered a few miles of the southern end of the Zoar Valley Trail.  While it was nice, it was pretty (very) flat and a bit boring. It might be good for a long training run,if you are looking for something off the roads. The northern end of the ZVT, from the Zoarville Bridge,is on the old towpath, which is right along the river, and a bit prettier, from what I remember.

I got in about 8 miles of nice outside jogging and hiking around Camp Tuscozoar.  Too nice of a day to waste it inside (as I sit on the porch typing this post)!!