first off last weekend was great! alison had to work until 5pm on friday so we didn't get to winthrop until 10:30 after everyone but chris had gone to bed. chris had stayed up to see us and to show us our luxuary accomadations for the weekend, the drive wore me out and i went straight to bed. in the morning we got to say hi to the canadians who were also staying with chris for the weekend, sally marcellus, rob lang, rob francen and mike ogrady before heading over to the twisp river pub to sign up for the 21.7 mile sunflower race. at the start i got to see some ultra/hash friends FC, maggot and english channel and other running friends like dan probst and hopefully new winthrop running buddy erik brooks. the race went well for me for the first 17 miles when the long down hill to the finish began. but i had ran the flats and uphills at such a fast pace just to stay in chase pack led by erik that when it came time to take advantage of my strenghs on the downhill i couldn't do it.(the first guy was way out in front so we were racing for second place) so instead of taking 2nd place i was passed twice in the last few miles to drop to 5th. oh well i tried hard and i don't think i'd do anything differently...well maybe road shoes would've been better than the inov-8s i was wearing-- there was lots of road and none of the trail was technical.
after the run was a nice awards ceremony(alison got a ribbon for 2nd in the 19 and under category(a misprint on the back of the ribbon) and i think nearly everyone won some thing in the random prize thing-- i got a nice biker bag. we met some new folks and then went home to clean up to go meet our new landlord and to checkout the place. it was nice and i wish i had pictures to show of it(i'll try to get some up sometime soon). but the place is a 2 bedroom cabin built by our landlord who added some artful iron work touches to the place like the creative loft railing and the lamp shades. there are animal trails leading right from the back yard up to official trails that are endless and there is a nice little river across the street in the front yard and planty of room for gardening.
after meeting with jerry who was super nice we met up with everone plus a few others at a campsite just outside of twisp before laving to go to a talk by an expert on development in rural communities. it was an interesting thought provoking talk followed by q&a. his arguement was that development and growth cannot be stoped and if you live in place that is growing then planning and cooperation with developers is the only way perserve the quailities that you cherish in yuor community. as one of the methow valleys newest residents i am sympathetic to this stance. i'd feel hypocritical if i were to move to a place and then shut the door behind me. it would be like if i got into hardrock and then lobbied for a change in the rules to keep my spot secure for further years while not allowing any new runners a chance to enter the race. so my approach must be one of comprimise, people can come to the methow but it should be on the terms of the people that live there and on the terms of the carrying capacity of the environment not one of isolationism or the opposite which all developers want, unchecked growth.
the next day i went on one of my favorite runs ever! the cannucks came to the methow to run all weekend to train for the swiss jura stage race this summer. they ran all three days they were there. i volunteered to formulate and guide the sunday run (monday they were going to run the rattler course with chris) it looked like there was still too much snow on a lot of the trails to be able to get the ~25 miles and ~5hours they were hoping for with out using some road and cross-country sections to connect some shorter low elevation trails but since their race would have a good deal of road they were fine with the plan. so at 9am we drove over to the pearrygin creek trail trailhead. we did a 10.4 mile loop from there using the gravel road that parralells the trail. the trail had quite a few down trees and it looked like fire crews had used part of the upper trail as a fire break but other than that it was a fun fast downhill run along the creek. from the loop we ran back to chris' mostly by following animals trails as we made our up and over four big hills/little mtns with the last and highest at 3750ft. there we watched as a handful of paragliders launched off the side of the mountain. we droped steeply down to the road to davis lake. at the lake we took a dip in the lake before making the last climb up and over the last mtn between the lake and chris and dave's house. the run was filled with great views to the south of the sawtooth range and the north cascades and it even had 4200ft of gain in just 20 miles and the feeling of freedom was awesome which came from being able to just run where ever we wanted thanks to the sparse vegetation. after the run were treated to soaking our legs in chris' chilly "pond" and smoothies and scrambled eggs! then alison hit road needing to be back home in time to get the house ready for alison's massage clients(as part of our preperations to move mid month alsion moved out of her studio at the begining of the month to sve money).
it was a great weekend and only made me more excited about our move coming in just 8 days!!!