UPDATED: Added Tacoma Narrows Slide Show at bottom of post.
Let's see.... my 24 summit adventure ended at peak 7 at around 1:30 AM. I met Michael Cartwright at 7:00 PM at the trail head at Highpoint Way. We had a surprise last minute participant Rob "Rattler" Hester who also met us at 7:00 PM.
We had beautiful weather with the temperature at the start being 73 degrees. It stayed light until 11:00 PM when we made the 4th Summit at East Tiger. As we headed back down East it was as if someone had flipped a switch. We had put our headlamps on at the summit of East. Rob and Micheal both had some auxiliary hand held flashlights that could knock small animals from trees with their sun like brightness.
Things were going quite well but Rob started to feel a bit queasy from the climbing demands the course offers. He wasn't complaining but he was being more quiet that normal.
I managed to ram my two smallest toes into a rock on the trail. I fouled the air with f-bombs as I walked the jammed toes pain off. Micheal assured me that I did not damage the rock in any way when I kicked it and that it would be fine. A short while later the trail became much less technical and I tripped over a log that was across the trail for trail erosion and landed in a heap on a very smooth soft trail. I bounced up and was running without any major aches or pains.
When we made the half way point (17 miles) I pulled the cooler I had stashed at the trial head out and we all drank and refueled. Michael had run dry of water before making the turn and lamented that he should have taken on water earlier. Rob was starting to experience some nausea and was not feeling to good.
We stashed the cooler and headed out for the second round of summits. We approached the long 5 mile climb back to South Tiger with a very reasonable pace that mostly involved power hiking with short runs in the traverses.
When we made it to the out and back trail head for South Tiger Rob was really feeling bad. We sat at the trail head and tried to rest for a while to see if Rob would start feeling any better. After about 15 minutes we headed up the trial to tag the survey marker at the top of South Tiger. Upon reaching the summit we sat down again and Rob was not feeling any better. We had a choice, we could continue for another tough 12 miles or turn back to the Tiger Mt. Road Trail Head and have someone meet us there.
I really wanted to attempt this 24 summit event this weekend but it seemed like a pretty selfish decision to choose to go on with Rob feeling so bad. Having a college student living at home has it's perks. I know my son Riley does not go to bed until around 3AM. I have him a call from the top of South Tiger and asked him to come rescue us at the Tiger Mt. Road Trail head. He was on his way and so were we down to the road.
We met Riley just as we emerged from the trail onto the road. Our timing was excellent. Riley shuttled us back to our cars at High Point Way trail head. Rob, Riley, and Michael headed home. It was a good decision to pull Rob off the Mt. and Micheal was thinking that he was in for some trying times as well so it was probably best in the long haul.
Thanks to Michael and Rob for taking on the night run with me. I appreciate your help and really enjoyed the run with you guys.
I remembered a couple of our Y-Run Club members were meeting at 4AM to climb Mt. Si. I gave them a call at 3AM and asked if I could join them for their run. We determined a meeting place and with about 30 minutes to kill I took a nap in my car. I woke up just in time to see Lesa and Jane pull into the parking lot.
We got to the trail head and got started on the run by 4AM. Mt. Si is an 8 mile run with 4 miles uphill and 4 miles down. The overall elevation climb is about 3600 feet. I think Lesa could have run half the distance up the Mt. but Jane and I were working hard at power hiking. It took us two hours to summit but the view was worth it. We all spread out on the way down the Mt. I was hanging with Lesa for about the first 2.5 miles and then I got hit with a bonk. I found a place to sit and took a shot of Hammer Gel and ate a PB & Honey sandwich. It didn't take long for the food to take effect and I was once again running down the Mt. The trail is chunky with lots of embedded rocks and roots.
We encountered many hikers and runners climbing as we descended. I was within ear shot of the trail head when I saw three hikers below me heading up the trail. I looked up to see which side of the trial they were on and I rammed my already sore toe into another rock. This time I crashed hard on some large and small rocks that simulated a cheese grater. I smacked my left knee, elbow, and shoulder as I rolled down the trail. I was hurting pretty bad and laying there trying to do an assessment of my injuries. The three hikers came up to me concerned having seen me crash and helped me up. Aside from the lacerations on my knee, elbow, forearm, and shoulder I did something to my ribs. The rib thing concerns me the most. If feels kind of like I was hit with an arrow with a sore entry point in front and a sore exit wound to the rear. I seem to be able to take deep breaths without any real discomfort so maybe I just strained some muscles. Time will tell if klutz boy will need to curtail my running to allow things to heal up.
Tomorrow I'm planning on running across the Tacoma Narrows Bridge with our Y Run Club. I've not run the new bridge span. It's a very large suspension bridge and I'm looking forward to the opportunity.
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