Thursday, June 21, 2007

Greetings from Squaw Valley-updated Fri am

I got into Squaw Valley early this morning, about 10am pdt and it is absolutely gorgeous. The weather is wonderful. Don't know the temp but is very pleasant, dry air and a nice breeze. I made my arrival in Reno Monday night late and went to bed soon after checking in. Tuesday am I decided to head over to Auburn and check out the finish area and then take a look around some of the last 3rd of the course that I hope to be running through in darkness on race day. Went over to No Hands Bridge and then over to Foresthill, the 62 mile point. I went for about a 4 mile easy run on the trail there. Very dusty, hot and humid as it was the middle of the day by the time I was running there. Fortunately it looks like cooler weather by the weekend and not the oppressive heat of last year is expected.
I got a surprise call from Barbara Mack on the way back to Reno. She changed plans and would be arriving in Reno Tuesday evening instead of Thursday night so I planned to pick her up at the airport. It would be nice to have some company over the next few days. Unfortunantly she didn't have a reservation and the casino's were all booked with bowlers and rodeo attendee's but we eventually found her a room a couple of miles from where I was staying.
Wednesday we headed over Rose Mountain to check out Lake Tahoe and find a place for another easy 4 mile run. It was just as beautiful as I had imagined it would be. We found a not too steep trail/jeep road overlooking the lake and got in our run. Afterwards we went down to the lake at King's Beach which is on the North Shore. We rented a kayak and had a nice relaxing paddle over to some interesting rocks naturally piled in a row in the shallow water. The water was refreshing and there was a steady breeze making for a most pleasant experience. If I could just hit the big numbers in the lottery I would spend every summer here and kiss NC humidity good-bye. But I'd have to return for our spectacular Spring and Fall.
Just as we checked into The Squaw Valley Lodge, Jay and Anita Finkle drove up. We contemplated going up to Emigrant Pass for the flag raising ceremony but we didn't want to make the long climb and descent just two days before the race. The other option was to take the tram but at $20 per to ride, we chose to pass on that. Barbara and I went for another easy 4 mile run on the bike path along the Squaw Valley road. The Finkles decided not to join us and went to rest since they had not gotten into Reno until after midnight. Although it's not too hot, the sun really bears down on you here. After the run we checked out the area and walked through the WS store.
Then it was time to check out the blister clinic. Jay and Anita took a nap and didn't attend. Not much info for me at the clinic. Lots of talk about taping feet and other things I don't need. I usually don't have blisters as long as I make sure to keep the grit out of my socks. And my Dirty Girls do a great job of that. I noticed I was getting very hungry. We are trying to stay on an Eastern Time schedule and I noticed it was almost dinnertime back home and we hadn't had lunch. Barbara was hungry too so we went in search of a place to eat. Decided on the Blue Coyote Grille. It was nice, good food but expensive. That's what you get in a resort area though. We sat on the patio with a view straight up the ski slope, the one we have to hike up on race day. Very pretty, impressive and a bit intimidating.
After eating we walked over for the trail clinic. This was a bit more useful as a couple of trail veterans gave a detailed description of the course between each aid station. I sat next to the Finkles. Also saw John and Debbie Straub. I met them at Promise Land this year. A nice young ultarunning couple. They had recognized me from reading this blog and introduced themselves. That is one of the greatest things about this blog is that I meet lots of nice people that I may not meet at races. After the clinic I was introduced to Dave Yeakel, a VHTRC member I had not met before.
After the clinic I decided to take a nice soak in the spa and then it was off to bed.

Got to go now. Maybe more later if I can get on the computer her again.

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