Monday, September 07, 2009

Updates on a Variety of Things

Realized that I am being a bit neglectful of the blog and that there have been a few things going on around here:

Knitting: Celtic Braid Hat - finished. Happy Feet socks - started at the conference before Ragnar, still on the first sock (done with the heel flap, gusset and on to the foot). Looks like they are sized for someone who wears a women's 7. Scarf knit from some awesome New Zealand wool purchased in the back of a gas station/bait store/yarn store almost 3/4 finished (will knit until I run out of wool).

8/28: 21 miles with Jim at Hartley
8/29 & 30: 0 miles (did go to the State Fair on Sunday where I walked a lot).
8/31: Ran on the Piedmont Section of the SHT with a friend for 30 minutes at a decent clip.
9/1: 0
9/2: Browns Point - NMTC Fall Trail Series. Mileage is a bit up in the air. One source says 6 miles, another says 8k, and three GPS's say 5.25 miles. My time - 46.31 means it couldn't be 6 miles, thinking 8k is a bit short, but not even sure 5.25 miles is right (though impressive time for me - this is a wickedly hilly course and they changed the route a bit this year, fooling me into going out too hard at one point and resulting in some cursing at another). Finished it off with a cool down run for a mile or so.
9/3:Thursdays are for running to work (again) - 2.68 miles in 22.07. Varied my route to avoid some ascents and minimize the descents after last nights race. This led to a slightly shorter route. Felt easy overall. Also ran in the evening - 3.5k with my daughter. Mix of running and walking at the Piedmont Ski Trails (she is just starting out).
9/4: 0
9/5: 25.9 miles on the SHT from the Grand Portage trailhead in Jay Cooke State Park to Bayfront Park (most of the Wild Duluth course). Started out in the fog at around 7:00 am. Dropped water and food at Cody St. Ran with a friend for most of the time though he ended up having trouble with the humidity and dehydration and dropped out at about 20 miles. I continued on but was low on water so made arrangements with Mr. Wildknits to meet me at the spur trail to our house with a fresh water bottle (ice, water and orange-pineapple juice never tasted so good). From there it is another 2 miles to the finish. Up until somewhere in the Piedmont section I had been feeling great, and even here I was feeling pretty good, but I was tired and it was getting hot.

At Bayfront I had to hop into the truck quick as we had family arriving from out of town shortly and my car was still out at Jay Cooke. Got out of the truck at the parking area and was pretty stiff - and faced with a 20 minute drive back into town. Stopped on the way in to pick up some corn and a watermelon at a road side stand. Took me a bit to carry it all up to the house (remember I have 36 steps to climb). Lesson - take a little time after a long run to stretch before getting in a car and driving.

This will be my last really long run before Wild Duluth (though as I type this I do have at least another 20 miler planned, so apparently my perspective is skewed). I leave for Grand Marais and then Isle Royale on the 11th. Will be there 9 days and do not plan on bringing running shoes (too heavy). Backpacking will have to suffice as training.

Ended up walking up to Enger Tower later in the day with family and exploring the area. Kid pace (2, 4, and 7 yr old) was about right for me ;->

9/6 and 7: 0 miles

Boating: Sunday the winds were predicted in the low teens so we headed down to the marina for a ride on the sail boat.

Passing under the Lift Bridge. The bridge was up to allow the Vista tour boat under but had not continued up for our boat. We were all wondering if we were going to clear the underside of the deck.... we did and once we were further in the canal the bridge went higher (another, taller sail boat was on it's way out). We still are not sure if the operator did not notice us or what happened with that lift.

Family time on Jada. These kids had never been on Lake Superior before. After the sail we went and hung out at the beach for a bit and the kids swam (it was the warmest I have felt it all summer and I was wishing I had a swim suit along). My brother-in-law and his family have been in Texas for the past 12 years, now in Nebraska. Close enough to visit!

Today it was back out on the Lake with some friends in their boat. No sails, instead we motored from Knife River to Duluth, under the bridge and down the harbor to the Superior Entry and then back out onto the Lake and up to Knife River. Sights along the way:

The sunset was spectacular, as was the moonrise (which I was unable to capture).

A fishing buoy that belongs to the guy Mr. Wildknits fishes with. These are set outside the nets used for herring, marking one end. This one had gone "missing". We called Steve (the fisherman), let him know we had located it and would bring it in to the marina.

Pulling in the buoy. We were in about 380 - 400 ft of water around 2 miles off shore. The buoy is 7-8 feet tall and there is a lot of chain, then rope and a concrete block to pull up.

Safely on board! Pictured is the float. What you can't see well is the hand-carved wooden pole, the flags at the top and the 400 feet of rope and the concrete block.

After the "rescue mission" we finished our trip into Knife River, unloaded the float onto the dock for Steve to pick up in the morning and headed home.

Earlier today I finally got around to digging up my garlic (and turning the bed over). This was my harvest. Digging garlic is a little like... well, not sure of the proper analogy. Reminds me of digging potatoes. You never know what you will find when you lift the garden fork loaded with dirt. Kind of like a treasure hunt I guess. I left this in a bit too long, but am happy with the size of the cloves. The largest will be saved for planting this fall (the bigger the clove the larger the head of garlic) and the rest will be eaten. I would like to plant enough to supply our garlic needs for the year - this wouldn't do it by a long shot.

My brother-in-law is also a brewer and had an opinion on what type of hops we are growing - he thinks Cascade. He was also advising us on harvesting - they are not quite ready yet. Need to do a bit more research on how to dry and store them. We have a huge crop (see previous posts for pics).

Made some baba ghanouj with eggplant harvested from our gardens. The Sungold tomatoes are ripening but we are wondering if we will get any other ripe tomatoes - always iffy up here. The broccoli has been slow to produce any side florets after the initial harvest, the brussel sprouts are coming along and the kale is in bumper crop mode. Favorite new recipe is frying up a bit of garlic in olive oil, then adding sliced kale, sauteing and serving as a side dish or over rice or pasta (maybe with some sungolds thrown in). Our cucumbers are also getting into the swing of things and we have been enjoying a baked cucumber recipe (involves mint and feta cheese and is sooo good).

I managed to spend a little time weeding the strawberry bed today. The plants that survived are looking great! Need to get it cleaned up and ready to add some compost and move the "babies" to fill in the spots where plants died this spring. Next year I will be harvesting strawberries - and probably cursing the chipmunks for doing the same thing ;->

Oh yeah, I sent in two race applications this week: In Yan Teopa 10 mile and Surph the Murph 50k(yes this means two ultras in two weeks...).


Chris said...

Whew! You're definitely staying out of trouble. :)

Two ultras in two weeks?! Eek!

wildknits said...

And still so much more to do!!! Leaving town right in the middle of garden harvest and food gathering time (expecting we will get a call about salmon and halibut soon).

Yeah - the two ultra's thing... it may be a bit much but all I can say is "What would Steve do?" Oh, wait... I am not going to train for a 5 minute mile! ;->

SteveQ said...

No, but you have better mileage than me right now! My long run is 7 miles!

Wayne said...

You've been busy. Looks like some good times. Did you stop short of marathon distance because there wasn't a shirt and medal? :)

wildknits said...

No - just what it worked out to from Grand Portage trailhead to bayfront is all. though - no GPS involved, just my math skills and the SHT Duluth brochure... subtracted the spur trails, added up the segment distances and I got 25.9

Jean said...

Wow, have you ever been busy! Great job with the training...and the gardening! This time of year is always so wonderful for fresh veggies!

Have a great time on your Isle Royale trip!