I had a restless morning in bed listening to the wind and rain outside and so got up at 5:20am for the 7am run, far earlier then planned. I picked Kaybee up in the Velociraptor and headed down the narrow gravel road to the trail head where about 30 runners gathered. The weather was good, while the sun was out, and bitterly cold thanks to a chilly wind, when the sun was hidden behind the clouds.
The first 4km was spent in good humour and two distinct groups formed with me being in the front group of about half a dozen. Thankfully our guide had run the route twice, because I can tell you that I would have missed quite a few of the turns. We marked the inconspicuous ones with arrows on which I placed a jelly snake for those behind us. (I hope they were tasty and the koalas didn’t eat them first!)
Once we arrived at the Mt Misery Trigg Station it felt like we had been going uphill forever, but the views across the valleys and dams were beautiful. Then the uphill continued. Man these hills were steep and never ending, Kaybee and I began talking about turning back early. I was struggling and starting to regret not holding back at the start to run with the rear guard. Trying to keep up with the fasties was taking its toll.
After starting to head back west towards the cars we left the group we had been running with (who must have been getting sick of waiting for us) and cut back to the Heysen Trail, with one other runner from the group joining us. Well, after all that uphill at the start there had to be a downhill and over the last 6km it felt like we did nothing but pound steep downhill, which quickly wore the quads out, giving the legs an all over workout for the morning.
After thankfully arriving back at the cars safe and sound in 3hr15mins (for what ended up being about 19km) I changed my short for pants and threw on a jumper. Ewen, I then placed a towel on the Velociraptor seat to protect it from my sweaty, stinky body.
The run was tough and hurt much more than Yurrebilla ever did. Then it dawned on me. This run hurt about as much as my solo training run for Yurrebilla…the common factor…I was carrying a pack of about 5-10kg…just more inspiration to lose some extra Kg’s.