There is something special to me about having accidental 'rich and intimate moments' with nature while running. Things like running through a herd of elk in a winter blizzard on Elden, hundreds of red birds on the Tonto Trail in the Grand Canyon, or running in between a black bear and her cubs on the John Muir Trail (well...that one may be too rich and intimate...) to name a few.
Sunday, Susan and I went down to Sedona to get some sun and a run after the wild storm that left a foot of snow in Flagstaff on Saturday. It was pretty amazing to have so much snow fall on Saturday and then drive the 45 minutes down to Sedona on Sunday and have warm sunny and dry conditions.
We had one of those 'rich and intimate moments' on our run. The air was surprisingly warm, the trails amazingly dry, grass was all around in thick clumps fighting with prickly pear cactus for space, purple flowers were blooming contrasting the bright red rocks and dirt and blue jays and hawks were making sweet sounds and frolicking in the trees and air. It was one of those very amazing spring days in the desert.
Then...to top off a memorable day, after a few miles into the run we ran near a wash that was dry and thought nothing of it... until up higher along the wash we heard rushing water and went over to investigate. We peered over the edge of the bank into the wash and realized that we were seeing the front edge of the snow melt from yesterdays storm in Flagstaff. We were literally seeing the snow melt reach this point in the wash for the first time. Like a small, albeit harmless, flash flood.
There was something fun and curious about walking along seeing where the flow was going to go next in the wash. The water flowed slowly but with obvious building volume as it worked it's way between rocks, around sand bars and at one point around an old wrecked car half covered in sand and logs.
Susan and I agreed that following this surprise running stream and 'witnessing' it's virgin path down the wash was something special for us, we felt a connection between each other and with the action of the creek that is hard to describe. It was really, really cool.
I'm sure this sounds pretty cheese ball, like something you would expect to hear from Sedona vortex hippies, but I don't care. It was just one of those days of accidental 'rich and intimate moments' with nature that was so special that it was worth reflecting on and savoring. What a great day.
Sunday: 3 miles (perfect day in Sedona, running and exploring with Susan)
Monday: 9 miles (run up Elden Lookout Road to saddle and back from the gate in deep snow while getting sick finishing with a time of 2:05... quite the struggle, felt a bit dizzy up on top and most definitely got a bit sick)
Tuesday: 0 miles (...feeling sick but then feeling a bit better by the end of the day...cross my fingers)