Wednesday, July 27, 2011

LOVE Evergreen Lake!

I pulled my usual "my paper is driving me nuts. I need to get out of the house. I'll go hunt Metroparks code words" stunt again yesterday. Even though I worked from home, and I slept in, staring at my computer screen for a couple hours made me want to scream.

Oak Openings' code word locations always interest me. This week's clue had you parking along the side of the road up at the Girdham/Sager Rd intersection and hauling in along a horse trail until you found where the Hiking/Scout Trail intersected it. Now, it was almost exactly a quarter of a mile in off the road, and it's a straight shot, but I can once again see someone with kids objecting to finding this week's word purely because of the amount on manure on the trail. The manure wouldn't have bothered me a bit had I been in my hiking boots or old tennis shoes, but I was already in my runners. So, my urge to sprint from the code word location back to my car was thwarted. I had to pick my way along the side of the trail and pray I wouldn't find any fresh piles. lol. I wonder how many people specifically parked further south along Girdham and followed the longer stretch of the Hiking Trail just to avoid the horse trail? This is the kind of thing that interests me. lol.

I can't believe I don't spend more time over at Evergreen Lake (Oak Openings)! I can't remember having spent any time there since we used the lake for canoeing for the Girl Scout Day Camp YEARS ago, which is a sad thing. If you can ignore the sight of the algae bloom overtaking the lake and the (sometimes) smell, it really has a nice little trail that runs around the perimeter. It's only 1.4 miles, but it really is a TRAIL trail. The contours of the lake provide a nice back-and-forth and you're always having to pay attention because of tree roots, low branch, or a quick turn in the trail. There is an area on the west side of the lake where you have to pay attention to the trail markers (and maybe guess) because you criss-cross the horse trail/rest area and the beginning of the all-purpose trail, but it's great fun. There are even a couple areas that are semi-clear that you can push your speed a bit more without worry of hurting yourself on a root. My "official" time for 1.29 miles was 16:28.62, but it should have been faster. I got flustered when I got to the horse rest area (which isn't on the map) and stopped for a second to get my bearings. Also, I had planned on walking once around the trail and then trying to run another lap. Not so surprisingly, As soon as I got out on the trail, I wanted to GO. So, I just made the 1 lap. Short run, yes, but I ran 3 miles the day before and my ankle was already a bit iffy. Plus, I wanted to head over to Farnsworth and find its code too. It was an almost-fun run, though. I haven't quite gotten to the point of calling running "fun" yet. lol

The code word at Farnsworth was super-easy to find. lol. It was in one of my favorite spots, actually. There's an old bridge that crosses the river at the very north east end of the park (the overlook is actually the start of the trail system and tow path), and around it is a GREAT area to scramble down the embankment and play in the river. The water is shallow and warm (usually) and there are plenty of things to explore around the bridge.
See?! Isn't it just the cutest little area?! It was actually just upriver from here where I was splashing around on my birthday last week. I have some better pictures of the bridge itself on my camera. I promised N I'd dig them out the other day and I haven't gotten around to it yet.

I don't know if I'll get a run in today or not. I've already run 2 days in a row (which is usually when my legs start arguing), though shorter distances. The major factor is my sinuses. Apparently, my sinuses aren't happy ... again. It started out as just in the evenings they'd go crazy (I still say it's the air conditioning ... happens every time we turn it on), but I woke up this morning miserable and I haven't stopped sneezing and blowing my nose since. Yes, I've already taken my Claratin-D. It isn't doing much, unfortunately. If it IS the a/c, it probably doesn't help that I'm sitting in a basement lab that is currently about 60*. The temperature in this lab is just another one of those goofy things we've been dealing with. This past winter, it was in the 80s down here, and now that they've turned off the steam for the construction outside our building, it's freezing down here. We keep long-sleeve shirts in the lab for during the day. It's crazy.

Alright, I guess I should get back to work. I said I would take a break from writing my paper to blog and listen to a podcast and the podcast just ended. Back to the grind. lol

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