Friday, May 10, 2013

A New York State of Trail

Well Hello There!

Yes, it is true...I am in New York again and I promise everything is fine!  I say this because some have noticed how much I have been traveling back here as of late and have expressed concern. I am healthy (although if I was sick this would be the place to come) and happy...I just have had the urge to visit more. I am at a point in my life where I can do that and I plan to continue with my travel for the next little bit. This week it is New York but in a few it will be Hilton Head, SC or Florida followed by some more New York and then some Colorado!! I am very happy with my decision to travel more and hope to continue sharing the experiences with you (as I plan to find some kick ass trails in each place to run!).

Oh that lake :)

Now, if you remember the last time I was up here I was excited about getting to Lake Minnewaska to explore some new trails. And as you may remember...I spent the whole week sitting on my ass enjoying my childhood home and all the beauty around it. Well...I am proud to say that this time I finally got up there. Today was sunny and 80 degrees so I figured it was now or never. My father was awesome enough to take the day off and come with me so I had someone to share all the amazing views with (and someone to serve as a backup camera man when my phone died!).

So like I mentioned in previous posts, I have been coming to Lake Minnewaska State Park for years but cannot remember ever really exploring the trails (like every other teenager who went there...I was too busy with other things!) Anyway, today I decided to explore a trail that went completely around the lake and I have to say I am so glad I picked it! The whole time I was making my way around I could see the beautiful lake below and all the mountains of the Catskills in the distance. It was almost challenging, as I did not want to pay attention to anything ahead of or around me...I just wanted to keep looking over my shoulder to the left. I also kept wanting to just stop...look around and take pictures. I will admit it probably was not all it could be due to my ADD while on the trails but I could not have been happier (and no...I don't really have ADD). This is just another reason why I will never be competitive in this sport...I just can't not stop and enjoy nature!
The views were breathtaking

I also got to experience how different the trails were compared to what I am used to down in Kentucky. Since NY State maintains this park the trails were well taken care of. Come to think of it, they were almost too well "maintained". Personally, I am not a fan of trails that almost feel artificial due to the introduction of gravel. I like a hard dirt trail full of tree roots and debris. Granted, I cannot move as fast at times, but I feel a little more connected to my surroundings. I tend to feel more "lost" in nature compared to just following a path that so many people make their way on each day. I find that when I am on trails that are created for the sole purpose of mass hiking my instincts don't kick in. My senses don't get as sharp and I don't notice the little things around me. While I loved the experience and the views of today....I cannot say I would want to make it a regular running spot. It almost felt a little too "touristy" for me which was kind of disappointing. However, in the end it was exactly how I remembered it. It is a gem amongst the mountains. The drive there was amazing as every direction provided mountain views and the lake itself is just breathtaking. To top it all off, it looks like the lake is starting to rebound from where it was a few years back. Lake Minnewaska has been classified as a "dead" lake due to acidity but it looks like nature (and man) is starting to repair the damage. Today I saw water snakes...lizards...frogs....small fish and even bass. It was such a great thing to see the ecosystem coming back. I can only hope that she can completely heal in the next few years! It was also a wonderful reminder that New York is not just the City or Central Park when it comes to places and things to do. We have mountains. They may not be like out west but they are amazing and beautiful and full of adventure if you just take the time to visit them. They are all around and really have an impact to those who take the time to notice. Too many times when I mention that I am from NY or going to visit people just assume that NYC is all that there is. So many are missing out. I wish more trail running would come to the Catskill/Pocono area. I think many would be surprised with what our mountains have to offer.
Disappointed in what they called "trails"

OMG....mountains in NY :)

I am also happy to report that today's little adventure totally has me re-energized about Breckenridge, CO in the summer/fall. The thought of a week at the house up there....running all those amazing trails (Sally Barber Mine area) and drinking all that amazing coffee (Cool River Coffee House baby! ) just has me giddy as a school girl!! I cannot wait and I am so grateful this feeling has returned. It was almost depressing as I was becoming indifferent to if I went or not. Now, I cannot wait to get out there and see what the trails are like compared to what I have been on so far. I cannot wait to experience the altitude difference while running....not to mention that this year UROC is starting there during my I may get to see some amazing runners toe the line (on my way to get coffee of course!)

Anyway, other than that not much is going on. Tomorrow I head back to Kentucky and plan to lace up my new Speed Cross 3's that came while I was gone and hit Raven Run (I found them on line for under $50.00...yes, I am that cheap.) Then it will be Red River Gorge this upcoming weekend to check out some trails that are a part of a new trail running challenge going on at our local run shop.

OH....OH....YEAH.....and I almost forgot (again). I have actually had a few people ask me what I have on my play list. I keep meaning to list it each time I blog and always remember AFTER I hit publish. it is. I am sorry it took so long...and like I told you it is pretty bipolar.  I pretty much listen to everything from techno to is really a mess. I don't have many songs on as I constantly update and rotate things around...just enough to get thru about 13 miles before getting bored on the replay. I guess I play my music a little loud...because I can't figure out why anyone would really care about what I listen to :) Don't make fun of it....


Alive - Krewella

All I Ever Wanted - Basshunter

Can't Hold Us - Macklemore

Change - Churchill

Come Along - Vicci Martinez & Cee Lo Green

Coming Home - Diddy

Crystallize (my *$&% favorite right now!) - Lindsey Stirling

Cups - Pitch Perfect Soundtrack

Desert Rose - Sting

Feel This Moment - Pitbull

Go West - Pet Shop Boys (shut up!)

Gone, Gone, Gone - Phillip Phillips

Greyhound (another favorite) - Swedish House Mafia

It's A Sin - Pet Shop Boys

Zombie Nation (Sports Chant) Kernfkraft 400

Light It Up - Fall Out Boy

The Resistance - 2Cellos

Sail - AWOL Nation

Song of the Caged Bird - Lindsey Stirling

Whenever, Wherever - Shakira

Who Needs A Road - Signpost Sound

Everything by Mumford & Sons

So that is it. After this I am going to log onto and let it update me on the Transvulcania Ultra over in La Palma. We have some awesome Americans taking on the usual suspects today and as much as I am a fan of some...I would really like to see the CO and OR boys kick some butt!!

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