Laurel Valley May Day:
A Blind Hog Finds An Acorn
By Alex Morton
In the ongoing attempt to run the Laurel Valley course each month of the year, Robert Crosby and I got back on the trail in the late morning of Memorial Day (5/26/03). The late start was partly due to my losing (and never finding) my contact lens. Once I realized it was gone, I got over it and had a perfectly wonderful "French Impressionist" run. The images weren't real sharp, but I was still able to run as fast as I wanted to go, which wasn't much. I finished in 10:29:37 with Robert finishing in 10: 27:00 to remind me he was just running along with me in case I fell and couldn't get up or decided to take the Hilliard Falls trail and get lost. These falls are highly recommended by Jeff Mc Gonnell who has no problem squandering 30-40 minutes in a run since he can easily make this up! I had promised Jeff we would go by there, but both Robert and I vetoed that idea when we got there.
The course was more beautiful than usual with mountain laurel blooming all the way. The new vistas we had seen in October, November, and March were again covered with green. This was very welcome as the sky was without a cloud almost all day. Humidity was fairly high and we thought it was warm at times. We both wondered how we put up with this run in August! There were 7-8 workers on the trail repairing parts of the course with new steps, new water breaks, and removing old leaves from the trail. There are still 4-5 large trees across the trail from recent blow-downs, but overall the trail was in great shape. We saw the same Blake Snake that Jeff McGonnell is pictured holding on the RFH web site, however we decided not to try domesticating this critter, least it starts waiting for runners every month. I am trying out a new trail name, Carolina Blind Boy, which Robert decided was a good description for me.