Monday, May 21, 2018

Fitzgerald Marine Reserve with the Dufour twins

Spent a wonderful day exploring the shore while watching the Dufour kids.  After going to Cal Day yesterday and exploring the "tide pools" at one of ESPM's booths, we decided to go do some real tide pooling. 

Next time, I'd like to do a hike like this... which requires a LOT of hiking on the beach... but that'd be really fun. I think the kids could handle it.

More links

What a stinker.  

after an hour or so of tidepooling, we decided to take the kids on a hike.  
Beautiful trees...
Thomas matching nicely.
found some lovely benches for numerous snack breaks.  
Pillar Point... home of Mavericks

not sure what this was... 
found some reminants of a rusty car... 
then we went up to Gray Whale Cove where Dylan, Kat, her brother and wife were hanging out with their kids.  And where Nikko wanted to shout at the ocean.  

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

MiWok 100k

This post is more for my reflection.  Thoughts for me, for next year... or when I run longer distances.  This was the first time I ran over 50k... and I felt things my body hadn't experienced before.  Mainly pain. 

The worst part was my knee.  I think I've got runner's knee?  Not sure, but my left knee has been cracking a lot for the last year.  Every time I run up the beast, it'll be "pop" "pop" "pop"... every step, fairly reliable.  Around mile 40, I got acute pain in my left knee.  The downhills were a beast... here's an article to ponder

Another discomfort was chafing.  I'm used to chafing from my randonneuring rides, but I hadn't experienced much while running.  I bandaged my chest so I was ok up top, but I didn't put any nut butter or vaseline until I got to Randall.  And when I got to Randall I told Rob I was cramping, so the lady at the Aid station got me a salted potato.... then I put my salty hands in the vaseline, and put it on my chafed area... that stung... and made my chafing worse... hiking up Randall was painful in sooo many ways. 

I went out too hard in this one.  And needed to eat and drink more in the first 30k especially.  I had barely drank my tailwind and Gu.  100k is a long way, and these mistakes took a toll on me.  13 people passed me in the last 2 aid stations. 


  • Amazing sunrise
  • seeing the headlamps dance behind me
  • perfect temps all day.
  • crossing the finish line with my boys
  • getting served pasta from Magda
  • the finish line beer.
  • Nice sunset
  • watching the last of the last racers rolling in 
  • Knee pain
  • Descending
  • the last section from Randall... need to do better there.  
  • having a Raffi song stuck in my head the last 30 mi ("everything hurts, hurts, hurts")
Next time:
  • pack a new shirt at every aid station
  • take some aleve
  • try taping for runner's knee
  • start SLOWer
  • take a camera/phone (figure this'll help with going slow in the beginning)

Final Results here
Tracking here

Muir1 - 25th place
TV1 - 29th
BV - 28th
TV2 - 26th
Muir 2 - 22th
Card - 29th
BR1 - 27th
RT - 29th
BR2 - 36th
Finish - 42nd
3 seconds before taking this pic, I was "pee-walking" apparently a common practice from what I saw on the trails.  I wonder what the ladies do?  I was laughing to myself here.  I let Sam go around this point, and at the bottom I took a wrong turn which cost me maybe 10 min.

Here's Sam's Strava link
And a blog post from Jean, who got 9th... and is insane.  Doing back to back 100km (with Quicksilver 100k, and having won the Ruth Anderson 50 miler the weekend before). 

What the 5 am start looks like:


Splits here
Results here

Friday, May 4, 2018

Estuary paddling with Kai

Weekday shenanigans with Kai.  Taking advantage of everyday I'm not working... as it is about to end soon...

Kai loves exploring under the dock

The local crew team was out practicing.
Do you see the name of this boat?  "Kai"
dragon boat practice

Wednesday, May 2, 2018

Pano: N. Chalone Peak summit with Sam

Sam and I went on a morning run in Pinnacles on Sat.  The proposed route looked nice on paper.  A big 15 mile loop on trails up to S. Chalone and N. Chalone peak.  Plus we also heard that there is a nesting pair of California Condors on N. Chalone...

But the situation changed quite dramatically when the trail fizzled to nothing at mile 2 and we had to bushwack/walk up the creek for a mile or so.  Then we realized that the very straight trail turned out to be the barbed wire fence marking the boundary of the national park.  So the first 6 miles took 2 hours.  An hour or so behind schedule... and we didn't have time to mess around and look for the birdies... but all in all an adventure.  And we caught a beautiful sunrise, and had a great run on the second half.

From Sam's watch...

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

X-mas in Japan: Part 9 on Okunoshima aka Rabbit Island! (Dec 25, 2017)

beautiful island in its own right

Okunoshima summit
Poison gas factory remains...
back on the main land... looking back at Okunoshima

Warning: Lots of pics.  These bunnies were too cute.

This is part 2/3 of the Japanese "wildlife" tour.  Part 1 was the Snow Monkeys.  Part 3 coming shortly.

Xmas isn't a big holiday in Japan and most of the population goes to work as it is not a holiday.  So while Becca was at work, we decided to do a day trip from Hiroshima using our JR rail pass.

Here's the rest thus far... 
Part 1 - Getting to Kawagoe
Part 2 - Minakami
Part 3 - To Jigokudani
Part 4 - Snow Monkeys!
Part 5 - Railway Museum, cousins
Part 6 - Tobu Zoo
Part 7 - Osaka Kid Zone
Part 8 - Xmas Eve party

The kids were exhausted and we had to wake them up for X-mas morning.  They don't really get presents yet... 
Becca had to work, so we decided to do a day trip somewhere.  And we settled on bunny island.  On the way to the train station we got on a PINK taxi!  Oh boy oh boy... the kids were excited.  AND it had pink pillows!
Pink taxi!
Picking up breakfast at the train station Con Bini - Convenience Store... 7-11.  Nikko's favorite.  Natto rolls!
And we used our JR rail pass to hop on a Shinkansen 2 stops... 
to Mihara station.  We didn't get off, but this station is built on an old castle.  With a moat.  Pretty crazy... Not sure what kind of impact statement they wrote for proposing this one.. 
Here's a pic of the station... 
Okunoshima seemed to be quite the attraction.  There were signs to how to get there in many languages... 

From Mihara station we got on the local line over to Tadanoumi Station.  This track runs right on the ocean, very pretty.  Amazing sea kayaking potential... 

Good map for the day.
The rules on the ferry ride over.  
You can camp there!  That'd be super fun.  
As soon as you get off the ferry, you are surrounded by bunnies and you are instantly satisfied.  
They are soooo cute.  This was quite the crowd pleaser... 
we bought a bunch of rabbit food before getting on the ferry... I think at a seven 11.
The sea kayaking potential in this bay is incredible.  

Clean white sandy beaches... 
Turns out the bunnies like cabbage.  

There are many trails on the island.  

we decided to walk around clockwise... this is by the visitor center.  

door to Mordor... 
Okunoshima also has a dark history.  In 1925 the Japanese Imperial Army decided to start a secret program to develop chemical weapons, even though they just signed the Geneva Conventions prohibiting them to do so.  The island hosted a plant that ended up producing over 6 kTons of mustard gas and tear gas... 

we didn't see any... but Japan is still quite wild.  In some areas... 
freestyle feeding.  

At the visitor center, there is a nice restaurant serving cheap udon.  reason number 453 to love Japan.... 

after the poison gas museum, we hiked to the summit of the island.  Where there is a sundial.  
and more bunnies.  The best thing about bunnies is that they are so stupid they don't follow you, or chase, or hunt you down.  A very refreshing animal to feed compared to monkeys, raccoons, and even deer... 
Really crazy looking flower.  Have no idea what it might be... 
A bunny bit me! 

On the ferry, there is a baby play area.  Nikko was copying whatever the baby was doing.  While Kai was just dancing... 
Our next destination is the top of that mountain on the other side... 
In Japan, mountain climbing is very regimented... At the train station there is a sign that reads.  It'll take around 1 hr if you are slowly walking... then 50 min if you are walking normally, and 40 min if you are walking fast.  And you'll waste 103 kcal if you weigh 50kg and 124 kcal if you weigh 60kg.  
The hike is steep, but very rewarding.  
with fresh springs to stop at... 
And buddha kanons to bow down to.  

This is the rest area.  Suggested rest time: 5 min... 

The tippy top requires following this chain.  Kimbo stayed back.  

Kai "resting" on the way home... 
forgot why Kimbo has that face... but that is not a face that is messing around.  

back on the Shinkansen, beer in hand, soon we'll be back at Becca's after a long, fun day feeding bunnies and lots of hiking.