Saturday, April 11, 2009

Operation "Doggy Bowl"

I am very fortunate to have Jordan Lake just a few miles from home, and I do most of my running at New Hope Overlook, one of the state parks at the lake.

North Carolina can (will) get very hot and humid, from about now until about November. There are water stops in the camp grounds (and bathrooms, but only open April thru November). The water stays on year round, which is great to fill up my water bottle(s), but nothing for the pups to drink out of.

And so Operation Doggy Bowl was planned.

Step 1.

Make the Dog Bowls out of milk cartons and string. Note my very clever way of identifying them.
Step 2 is head to the trails, with pups and Doggy Bowls

This is the trailhead of the "Ankle Breaker" trail that I will be using for my walking practice. It is a 5 mile loop trail, with plenty of roots, rocks and hills.

Today, I just went a little under 1 mile on this trail until it bisects another trail that leads to "Campground A". Here are a few more pictures from that first mile.

It's a fun trail, and more often than not, I can get around the whole thing without bumping into another human being. Although, now that spring has sprung, there are more people using it. (I now have to pay $5 to use the park on the weekends. I can buy a season pass for $4o. Probably worth doing.)

This is a pretty steep downhill. If you don't watch it, you can slip on the pine straw.

Once out of the woods, turn right to Campground A - it's a short steep hill. I walked it.

Entering the campground - there were actually people camping - first time I have seen that since the fall. I felt conspicuous.

........and here we go. Phase 1, mission accomplished.

The facilities, now open again after the winter shut down (quite why they lock them, I have no idea - there is no plumbing, it's not like I could steal anything or vandalize them. )

This is just entering Camp B - you can just see some real humans in the background walking to the camp area

There are about 1.6 miles and some good hills between Camp A and Camp B.

Phase 2 - Mission Accomplished

........and Wilbur approves.

It will be interesting to see how long the water bowls last. Could they be confiscated by the Park Rangers? Will a camper decide that they would look good as ornaments, and take them as a souvenir?

It would of course be nice if they survive the summer, because no matter where we are in the park, the pups will never be more than 25-30 minutes away from some drinking water.

As for today's run - I took it easy, with plenty of walk breaks, and pauses to take pictures, however, I did notice some minor twinges, particularly in my ankles, and quads. Just my body's way of reminding me to take it easy for a few more days, and letting me know that I am not quite as recovered as I thought I was. Probably a reminder to have another Epsom salt bath.

Today's Garmin Data:

Distance: 4.15 miles
Time: 49:50
Pace: 12.01 min/mile


  1. Well, you were moving right along at 12 min. miles. Good for you! Be careful...

    I love the dog bowls...there is a company that makes a collapsible dog bowl that you can carry with you while you run/backpack. It might be called RuffWear; just in case someone steals yours.

  2. Just looked at the RuffWear website. They have some neat stuff. I'd eventually like to get them their own backpacks so they can carry their own water!