by Jim Pugh


Having made my goal of six hours last year, this year I decided to stop and smell the flowers along the trail.  I brought a camera to capture some of the lake scenery.  The weather cooperated with a magnificent day.

 Inspired by last year’s border collie participant, my Aussie-mix Meg joined me this year.  She trots like a coyote and had an easy time of the run.  Meg is a Hurricane Rita rescue dog from Lake Charles , LA who fully enjoys the cooler weather of the northeast U.S.

 For the first half of the Wakely trail we ran with Pat Canonica and his Labrador retriever Bob.  Bob came from the same rescue network as Meg.  At the bridge over South Lake (mile 15) the two dogs jumped into the reeds and frolicked like dolphins.  We did the first half of the course in 4:20.

 The second half was at my normal pace, running it in 3:10.  It was nice to have more energy than usual for the 2nd half of the course.  Its hills didn’t seem as formidable this year.  Meg enjoyed the swim in Cedar River Flow at the finish line.  

I packed a little more gear this year – including camera and dog food.  For water I carried four 8-ounce bottles on a waist belt (Amphipod) – drinking and purifying a bottle every half hour (Katadyn tabs, cut in ¼, carried in a contact lens holder).  Other supplies were carried in a vest pack (Ultimate Direction Wasp).  I ate an energy bar of some sort every hour.  Most of the bars are tasteless and overly chewy.  I like Shot Bloks but need some variety.  I drank about 120 ounces of water – spiced up by electrolyte dust (Gookinaid Hydralyte).  I continue to love trail running in Inov-8 shoes - the Mudroc 280 is a good model for Wakely.

The deer fly index this year was 0.

 Enough of the narrative.  Here are seven photos from a glorious day:

Spruce Lake , looking SW

Meg at Sampson Bog outlet

Mud Lake , looking North  

South Lake , looking West  

South Lake , looking East  

Pat Canonica and Bob at South Lake crossing  

Cedar Lakes , looking Northeast