Aha! Gary Robbins said on his FB page this week that there are 35 challenges (37 runs) in total. I guess I'd better do the Sunset Run sooner than I was thinking! A couple of my Toronto friends did it on the Solstice, which showed a nice aesthetic sense. I'm hoping 'Bent will run with me in the woods in the dark but Covid-style dentistry wears him out so much that he's currently in bed before Sunset + 30 minutes. Although I enjoy racing alone at night, for some reason I've never felt comfortable training alone in the forest at night.
I go for runs in the forest at night all the time. Well, not all the time. Specifically, not too often at this time of year.
If I were a guy, I’d probably be fine with it. I know it’s irrational, other than the increased risk of wildlife interactions. (There have been rare sightings of bears and cougars in our forest.) The trails are often deserted in the daytime too, and that would be a more convenient and productive time for an axe murderer to go for a hike. But I’m almost never afraid on trails in the daytime - at least not in a rural area. I have met a couple of creeps over the years but they weren’t runners so I could leave them behind.
I find it a lot harder to run alone in the forest at night than on the streets. In Oslo if I were running alone I mainly stuck to the lit trails, so it didn't really feel like night. I was more inclined to rely on my headlamp while skiing, maybe the brightness of the snow made up for the darkness?
The problem in Oslo was that sometimes there *were* people out in the woods (camping or living or cruising) and it was really startling to come across them.
I’d be fine on streets too, which gives me an idea for the Sunset Run. Interesting - now that you mention it, I’m not as nervous in the dark when there’s snow.
Aside from the brightness of the snow I wonder if the quietness also helps. There are far fewer random rustling sounds with the snow, and maybe we don't hear things from as far away. Harder for the imagination to get carried away.
That’s true. Also, it’s harder to imagine a crazed lunatic hanging out in the dark in nordic ski gear at -10C. And ski poles are great for self-defence! :)
Actually, J-J, there's an extra incentive to run after dark this time of year even though the sunset is so late: No FDFs. They seem to be diurnal.
On the other hand, one of my favorite local trail runs, Windham Town Forest, has had a bear sighting recently.
I suppose in the city you don't have to worry about FDFs or bears. Are there FDFs or bears in the Fells or Blue Hills?
I think if there were FDFs in the Fells that I would have noticed them, so I'm going to guess no.
Yeah - I’ll run streets in the dark, but start to get spooked on urban trails at dusk.
Urban trails mght be a different story, but in my rural area, what are the chances that there would be a crazed lunatic out in the woods on a night when I decided to go for a run? Oh, wait... well, what are the chances that there would be two crazed lunatics...
(Co-workers do think that I'm insane to go running in the woods at night, and they know what else I do for fun.)
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