Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Running the Stairs at Castlewood

 Long ago, maybe 1990 or so, I did a fair bit of running.  I did a few duathlons and even a few running races.  Realizing that running on the pavement was for the birds, I started running the mountain bike trails that we rode and raced on.  Castlewood was unique because it offered THE STAIRS.  I arrived at Castlewood today with a little sun poking morning ride plans had been dashed by rain.
 Before this morning sun poked through, it must have rained hard at the 'wood.  I don't know if you can tell that there is water running down the middle of the trail.
 After running up Lone Wolf and heading right at the top, the trail meanders along until this happens.  No problem for me today and MY ADIDAS.
 The views along the top of the bluff are stuning.  I wish my camera could do them justice.
 More beauty.
 Then....THE STAIRS.  They are awesome.  They start here (or maybe they end here?) and go all the way down to the railroad tracks that run along the Stinging Nettles trail.
 They keep going down.  And down.  They are nicely made wooden stairs.  This is actually not the same set of stairs that I ran in the 90's.  The old set had longer straight sections and may have been harder.  This set stutter steps, sometimes only three steps at a time.  But they do go down...
 At one point you can sight the old stone steps that led up from the bottom.  I'd love to go back in time and see the antics that happened out here when it was a summer getaway.
 After getting to the bottom, it's back up again.  This is perhaps the longest straight section.  It doesn't seem like much at first, but somewhere about a third of the way up, it seems like a bad, bad idea.  It's NO STAIRWAY TO HEAVEN!
Back down to the bottom (I did this four times!), this is the sign to turn around and go back up.  It's the little tunnel under the tracks that leads to the Stinging Nettles.  All told, I was out there about an hour.  Mostly running, some trotting, and finally some walking back to the car once I got back down Lone Wolf.

I'm going to do this again.  And Chubb.  Maybe some of Greensfelder, too.

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