We've had some strange weather here in the NW for the last few weeks.
So far, we've only had one really cold stretch of weather. Like everyone else in the state, the first few days of December were super cold with below zero temps for lows and single digits for highs. Other than that, it's really been pretty mild. Never really too warm (haven't seen one of those odd 60 degree days yet); but, it's generally been 30ish for the highs on most days, with even a few low 40's thrown in for good measure.
But, the mild temps mean it's always a toss up if we are going to see precipitation in the form of snow or rain or a mix of both. It seems like every time that we get some white stuff on the ground, it's almost immediately followed by rain. And, that leads to every runner's worst enemy - ice.
I can tolerate most conditions. There are only two weather events that I really dislike. The first is wind. I hate the wind. Living in Billings for 16 years, I learned how to tolerate wind and how to struggle through windy runs (hey, it was either that or never run outside :-) ). But, here in Plains, that's usually not a problem.
Second on my list is ice. It's just so hard to compensate for ice. And, no matter how cautious your are, you're always just one misstep away from landing on your ass. Yesterday is a great case in point. The day came in cloudy but dry with temps at about 32 - 34. Just about right for an early January long run right?? - Wrong. The snow, then rain, then thaw, then freeze since New Year's day pretty much meant a nice little sheen of ice on all the paved surfaces.
So, the entire run was going back and forth across the roads to dry to find areas that had been sanded or areas where there was still a bit of snow cover (at least the snow cover was crunchy and provided some traction). Even getting in and out of the car at the parking lot was a trick manuever.
I know, I know - Bitch and Moan, Bitch and Moan. But hey, one bad fall and you're saying hi to mister injury. Not high on my list of things to accomplish in the winter of 2010.
And, as I sit here typing, I'm looking out the window - the temp is a nice cool 33 degrees and the skies are dropping a crappy little mix of snow and misty rain. I suspect that the roads are just about ready to glaze up all nice and slick. Thank goodness for the treadmill. As much as I like to be outside, I like staying on my feet even better. So, it's off to the torture device for me for today as I prepare to worship the mileage gods.
See you on the roads, tracks and trails (and, reluctantly, the treadmills)
The Muddy Buzzared