"

Over training is over rated, rest better so that you can train even more" - Nick Yster Bester


Monday, May 14, 2012

A Nice Trail Run!

Yesterday I went for a trail run to formally start training for my 2012 trail season. I drove to the Kliprviersberg Nature Reserve and I had a blast!


Main entrance to the reserve

My run started with a stream crossing. The water is still flowing quite strong even though we are already in our dry season.


Just after the start there is a spot where you can always see many Dassies (Rock Hyrax). It is not easy to get a photo of these little guys so I was happy to get this one...


I ran the western part of the reserve and took it very easy as I am still coughing from the chest cold I had although I feel 100% in every other way. I took more time and photos along the way and decided it was a good time to show you all my favorite trails a bit better. I went up with the Sunbird Trail.



The climb is tough and technical with lots of rocks but the views are worth the effort.



Once at the top, the run is comfortable and beautiful. I love the type of bush and grass fields you get here and always feel exalted while running here. Some of my favorite spots in this reserve are at the top here.



When I hit the highest point on this western side of the reserve the view to the South always gives me extra energy. This is where I get that feeling of "this is where I want to be".


Running over these rocks is always a highlight...


Once over these rocks there is a steep and very technical (rocky) descent and I ran that fairly hard yesterday. This year I really want to work at getting down mountains a bit faster to make up some time. Once at the bottom I ran another 500m or so and then turned onto one of the connecting trails. Clearly not as many people use the connecting trails...


Mr Porcupine was here.

I then joined the "Gifbol Trail". Gifbol is Afrikaans for "Poison Ball" and I was glad I could see some to show you. It is a tomato like fruit and apparently poisonous.


From here the run becomes easier as the trail make its way back to the stream. There is a wooden bridge here to cross the stream and yesterday a few of the local horses were at the bridge.


People always warn to be very careful of the horses here. They walk freely between the game and is believed to be descendants of the farm horses that was kept here many years ago when the area was still a farm that belonged to the Marais family. Yesterday however, the horses were very friendly, asking for a scratch before I crossed the bridge. :)


It was getting late so I decided to take the easy route back to my car on the "Bloubos East" trail. Bloubos is Afrikaans for Blue Bush.


The Bloubos Trail is easy with only a few stones in some places. I was feeling happy and it felt as if I was floating over the rocks as I ran the final part of the trail.


I'm looking forward to the trail season and can't wait for this weekend when I'll be back to run the Eastern part of the reserve. I'll do a similar post with photos of that run.

Thanks for reading! Happy running and have a super week!

30 comments:

Shawn said...

You have a beautiful country! Glad to hear you are feeling better.

abbi said...

That looks like a gorgeous location for your trail run to kick off the season!!

misszippy said...

Thanks for taking us on such a great tour! It was neat to see some of your native species there.

Liz said...

What a great run! The hills and rocks do look tough though!

Ewa said...

Nothing better than being in nature, running or hiking. Thank you so much for sharing your photos. Some of them remind me of CA scenery in autumn, with golden grasses and exposed rocks on trails. I think you would like running here too.
Glad you are feeling better.

Kovas Palubinskas said...

Nice variety of areas. I initially thought the first photo was of activities offered in the preserve!

Paul said...

Hi Johann,

Great photos...and love the Afrikaans lessons thrown in gratis 8)

I've seen a Dassie...they are HARD to photograph:

https://picasaweb.google.com/106645855439771936991/Africa2007#5404098149112170546

Looks like a great place to run.

Robin said...

Looks beautiful!

Indi said...

How totally awesome is that trail!1 Love it!

Kate said...

I love your pictures! What a beautiful place to run in. :) It always makes me happy to run on trails. I've definitely made progress on my downhills. I have a long way to go, but I'm not nearly as timid on foot as on the bike.

Detroit Runner(Jeff) said...

It looks like a great place to run. Very nice!(and hard!) ha

Jerry Smallwood said...

WOW, I am just picking my jaw up off the floor. That is one beautiful place, just don't lose your car keys :-)

ajh said...

So that is where you saw your friendly horses! Thanks for all the pictures. I loved your comment about "this is where I wanted to be!" Great feeling.

Char said...

There's no way you can finish a run like that and not feel good. Beautiful weather. Beautiful scenery. Spying animals. And the achievement!

On the Right Track said...

Johann...it is so beautiful there! Thanks for sharing such a gorgeous trail...I cna't wait to see the Eastern part ;) Glad you're feeling better!!!

Abby @ Have Dental Floss, Will Travel said...

Is a dassies like an otter? I love seeing animals when I'm out for a run/bike/paddle :)

HappyTrails said...

Awesome trails Johann - some of the terrain looks very similar to ours. Glad you are finally getting over that chest bug!

Giorgio said...

What a beautiful place to run!
The 7th picture shows that you can run there for miles ... and you don't see buildings while you are running. Interesting landscape!

Marlene said...

Looks like a gorgeous place to run - you could never get bored with that scenery!

Jill said...

Did you run about a thousand miles? Wow, a vast variety of terrain and scenery. Gorgeous!!!

Molly said...

It's amazing to see those horses! Happy you had such a great run, aside from the coughing : )

ultra collie said...

hey johannif tired theres always transportation back to your car then right ;)

Raina said...

You are so blessed to have a chance to run in that! What a beautiful spot. It's amazing to see all the animal variety. I think I have said this before, but it looks very similar to N. California to me- except at a higher elevation there (I think)...just my opinion.

If I EVER get a chance to come to SA, I hope you will give me a tour.

2 Slow 4 Boston said...

I'm not really a trail runner, but I wouldn't mind running with you along that trail. Good luck with the upcoming trail runs?

Vicky said...

I love seeing the photos of the amazing trails you get to run on. They look amazing.

Mark said...

Wow....this looks like such a great place to run...nice pics!

Jen said...

Beautiful trails. And some of those really do look like some technical ones. Love the horse picture!

Petraruns said...

What gorgeous scenery - thank you for sharing the photos with us. Beautiful!

Black Knight said...

SA is amazing, the scenery is wonderful.
I see how the colors of our countries are different but both beautiful.
Glad you can enjoy this kind of routes.

Debs M-C said...

Wow. Looks amazing!