Mar 032008

My Cooliris cubemate Kevin is a chronic runner.  He has mentioned on more than one occasion about going out for a 6am “refresher” run. 6am! The only way you’ll catch me running at 6am is if my bed is on fire. Actually, a bed on fire would be nice and warm, and hardly an incentive to dash out into the morning chill.  No, to get me out of bed, my flesh would have to be on fire!

Looks like Saturday Kevin and his fiancee Elizabeth took part in the Skyline 50k trail run, as covered by consummate trail runner Scott Dunlap in his widely read trail-running blog. Actually, they did a heck of a lot more than “take part” – Kevin took fourth place in the men’s division, and Elizabeth took first place in women’s, and set a new course record!  Way to go Kevin and Elizabeth!

Scott has some great photos of the Skyline summit trails and vistas in that article too.  Ok, the photos are of runners, but my eye is always drawn to the scenery.  I drive through that area nearly every morning (Hwy 9 north to 35/Skyline Drive, west on Skyline to La Honda, then 84 north to Sand Hill Road), and nearly every morning there’s at least one “wow” glimpse somewhere along the way. 

From Skyline you can see the Pacific on the left, looking over the Pescadero hills, and the San Francisco Bay on the right, looking over the Palo Alto hills.  Sometimes the coast is being consumed by a wall of advancing fog, other times the Bay is overcast or smoggy, but rare is the day that Skyline does not ride above the murk. A few weeks ago the “wow” was 3 inches of snow that dusted the ridge overnight.  (They closed 35 for the day shortly after I got through.)  Last week it was a pair of wild turkeys ambling along a grassy hillside, just a few yards from the road.  This week it might be discovering a burst of daffodils dancing round a long ago homestead.

I try to use my one hour commute time to meditate on some code problem at work or construction challenge at home. I’m pleased to report that Skyline Drive usually comes up with something to knock that train of thought asunder just about every day.