Sunday, October 2, 2011

Running in Alaska: Enjoying an Indian summer in Anchorage

I'm not sure if there is such an expression as an Intuit summer, so I'll go with the standard Indian one. What a gorgeous weather we had in Anchorage, Alaska, this week! It was chilly in the morning but 3 days with blue skies and about 12 hours of day light made the stay really enjoyable, not to mention the productive work with our prospect up there.
My return flight was at 2 AM on Thursday morning, leaving the end of Wednesday afternoon to enjoy a good run before going to the airport. One colleague, David, was staying for another day of business meetings and he joined me for the start of the run. I found out that David was also from the Bay Area (Marin County) and an avid endurance athlete, having just completed an Ironman in Germany in 14 hours and 50 minutes!
Staying at the Hilton, we were ideally located a few hundreds yards from the start of the Coastal Trail on 2nd Avenue. If you visit Anchorage, this trail is a must as it provides a nice getaway from downtown with amazing views of the Ocean. I found the trail through the perfect website, Trails of Anchorage.
I ran the whole trail, from 2nd Avenue to Kincaid Park and back, that is 21.5 miles (starting at the Hilton). See my Picasa album for more pictures of this great and easily accessible trail along the Ocean and going around the Ted Stevens International Airport.

I was delighted to encounter a few specimens of the famous local moose (one bull, two cows and one calf), enjoy the colorful autumnal tree colors which we are missing in the Bay Area and see many other users of the trail, hikers, runners, cyclists, skate boarders or roller-bladers. Unfortunately, the trail stops at Kincaid Park or I would have been tempted to continue on along the Turnagain Arm where many wales or orcas can be seen at this time of the year. I'll have to come back for that and rent a car to cover the 20 miles from downtown.
Including this run, that has been a good 70-mile week leading into some tapering before Firetrails 50-mile next Saturday. This Sunday, we even celebrated Agnes' hip surgery anniversary with her first 3.5 miles since she stopped running, 8 years ago, yeah!
While I'm still waiting for my visa for Saudi Arabia and, without my passport, cannot plan my other trip to Asia and Middle East, I'm heading up to Seattle to visit another prospect there this week. Getting back to work and talk to you next week after the race.


Anonymous said...

So glad to hear Agnes can run again! Your pictures are truly beautiful. I need to try to paint some of them. Thanks for sharing your journeys. It means a lot.

Anonymous said...

Je dirais, en français la même chose que la précédente, sauf que je ne sais pas peindre! (ne serait-ce pas Ann?)
Mille mercis