I woke this morning smack into a battle with the Blerch. It was taunting me with excuses not to go hiking. I won the battle but not before a few seeds of doubt were planted once again about whether I have what it takes to prepare and finish SSH. Ugh!
On the ride to Valley Forge the oldies station was doing a countdown as they often do on Saturday mornings. I found myself listening to "Don't Worry Be Happy" I know it's one of those songs that people like to hate. It's not on my list of favorites but it doesn't offend me to hear it and this morning it was appropriate. Being the dork that I am I decided it was a sign to stop worrying about SSH. I've got 29 weeks to go. I'll get there ;) A few minutes later James Taylor's version of "You've got a Friend" came on the radio and that IS on my list of favorites so my mood was greatly improved. Pppppffffttttt to the Blerch.
I saw Maggi and Russ at the meeting spot and waved them off to their run and set out to hike I decided to explore a path I always pass by on our way to Mt Misery. I've seen the trail runners head off that way so I knew it went somewhere fun.
I ended up on a fairly interesting trip that more or less followed the perimeter of the park from the Knox HQ parking lot to the visitor center. The fields were icy but there was enough snow to provide some traction. At the visitor center I decided to cut over to the Betzwood Trail-head and follow the River Trail. This trail was a mess. More ice than snow.
After 2 miles of trying to stay upright, I gave up and climbed the hill to follow a path above the River Trail back to Pawlings Farm and over to the Schuylkill River Trail along 422. I figured the paved SRT would be better. I was wrong. Ok it was a little bit better in that there was more snow along the fence so I didn't slide quite as much but it was still slow and bumpy.
Back at 23 and County Line road I spent about a minute on the idea of taking the Chapel Trail back to Wash HQ and then over Mt Joy to my car. However, it was likely no better - and probably worse- than what I had just done. So I followed the VF Loop over to Inner Line Drive and back to my car.
I spent more time on pavement than I expected to today. So much if it was snow and ice covered that at least it was an adventure. I did much less climbing than I would have had I gone over Misery, Joy and Chapel. Maggi and Russ did try Valley Creek Trail and took a look at Joy and reported that it was rough going. And in the end did manage 12.5+ miles, So it's all good.
Paula 1 - Blerch 0