|Taken from my iphone|
I've heard various explanations for how Mount Magazine got its name. One story is that explorers in the area heard a landslide on the mountain and likened the roar to a ammunition magazine exploding. Another version has the French naming it for its resemblance to a storehouse. The mountain is more of a plateau really, with a flat and run-able top, and steep cliffs on the Southern side. On May 17th, I left Tulsa in the wee hours of the morning to run the Magazine Trail Run, an 18 miler fun run across the top, down the side, and back up the mountain.
When I drove into a cloud while ascending to the starting area, I realized that this was not going to be a morning of inspiring vistas. I got over my initial disappointment with the weather quickly enough though, when I realized how cool it is to run along cliffs in heavy fog. We started at the visitors at the top, and ran for several miles along the edge of the mountain. On our left was a thousand foot drop into soupy white nothingness, all very mysterious and unsetttling. When I was on the West side of the mountain, the sun eventually popped out for a brief period, but the temperature stayed cool all morning. We climbed signal hill, the tallest point in Arkansas, and soon after descended down to the base of the mountain on the North side.
This was the first mountain race where my muscles didn't cramp up and stayed strong right until the finish. I credit that to eating more before and during the race. I also started out slow, keeping in mind that most of my energy was needed for that 1000+ foot ascent at mile 11. I climbed feeling fresh and passing many of the people I let pass in the first few miles.
I loved everything was low-key. No entry fee or race bibs and you kept your own time. A big thanks to PT for marking the trails, setting up aid stations and grilling some tasty burgers post- race!
|Some hoppy farmhouse goodness for the recovery. Cheers!|