Posted by: Karen | August 17, 2008


Saturday morning I knew the Moose would be calling, so I went out looking for it. I loaded up 3 new gels and 3 Nuun tabs into my water belt. I topped up the frozen water in my bottle and took it along. It was hot, even early in the morning.

My legs were tired and achy before I even made it out of my neighbourhood. I made deals with myself up and down the familiar route: If I walked to there, then I would have to run to there, and so on. As ran down through a ravine, I wondered where the Moose was. All I heard was the dull thud of my feet in the dirt.

I ran over the roller coaster of the escarpment behind the Edgemont Club and remembered the snake from a couple of weeks ago. No evidence of wildlife today. Where was my Moose? I grabbed a couple of drying saskatoons from a bush and kept on climbing.

I sucked down an orange Accelgel (creamsicle-like) and re-filled my water bottle at the park entrance near the one hour mark. I figured I’d find my groove in the second hour, up on the plateau of Nose Hill Park. You know what? I’ve decided I don’t like plateaus much. Too flat.

I wandered around amidst the tall wild grasses with no set route in mind, except to go generally east in a quest to get to the other side of the park. I didn’t want to go straight across – that wouldn’t give me enough distance for my training goal. I didn’t want to diddle around too much there either. I was tired and hot.

At one point I stopped my watch, traipsed off the path into a particularly tall stand of grass, laid down and looked up at the sky. Did I hear the moose? Nope. All I heard was the wind in the grass.


I didn’t have time for this. I have so many things I’m supposed to be doing, accomplishing, thinking about! The Moose is in three little weeks, and I needed this run to be solid. I could be at home organizing a race instead of out here on this ominous trek. I could be in a nice, cool basement, folding laundry. And what was I doing? Staring up at the cloudless, bright blue sky.


It was almost as if I was being told to quit thinking such loud worrying thoughts and just enjoy the summer day. I got back up, re-started my watch, and found the other side of the park (at the 64th St. lot). I climbed back up into the park and right up onto a big boulder three times my height to eat my second gel. Stopped my watch to admire the view. Forgot to start it again for about 5? minutes when I continued on. There was a strong wind, but it was still hot.


The route back was not pretty. There was more sorry, achy hiking than running involved, but I eventually made it home after four hours of rambling around. I stopped by the 7-11 and carried a jug of milk the last km home on my head. I guess it wouldn’t be a decent long distance goal if it didn’t involve a sucky training session or two.

I’ll find that Moose soon enough.



  1. Karen,
    I hope getting to the top of Moose Mountain is as enjoyable as getting to the top of Nose Hill Park.

  2. The Moose’s peak is not the place my true joy will be found.
    I am merely climbing up so that I may run down!

  3. You do have a way with words, girl. Almost felt I was out there with you!


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