running

Waterfall on the Coutour Path

This is what trail running is all about in Cape Town; this was shot on this afternoon’s run on the contour path just past Skeleton Gorge (Window Gorge?).

Tokai Forest

This is one of the things that I love about loving in Cape Town. You can goto Tokai forst, and find runners, cyclists and horse riders all sharing the same area (and genrerally getting on with each other).

Today I found all three on the same day.

Horse riders
Horse riders

Runnners
Runners

Mountain biker
Mountain biker

Slave Run

Slave Run

Today was the Annual Slave run in Cape Town. Like many old cities, we have a sad history of many slaves that were a large part of building our city, but who are seldom remembered. To commemorate this, there is an annual run and walk through the city centre which passes many historical building remembering slavery. The route started with the firing of cannon from the castle, a run through the castle and past the old slave lodge (which is now a museum).

I ran the 10km run (there is also a 21km run, a 10km walk, and a 5km walk, so something for everyone), and I finished in a very respectable time of 1h03.

I took that shot of my medal at the finish line, with the Cape Town City Hall in the background (it really is a single shot, not multiple shots merged later).

On the trail

Somerset West

I have now completed three trail runs over the past month. The last one was the Helderberg Mountain Challenge yesterday. Trail running is far more crazy than road running. Sometimes you run on a gravel road, sometimes on a thin mountain path, and quite often you are climbing up a river bed, looking for the next contour.

A 10km run usually takes me just over an hour, but on this trail it took 1:40; it is a much more difficult route. You have to take all your own water with you, and on the longer runs you need to carry space blankets and first aid kits. In total we went up 600m, and of course down another 600m.

I didn’t take my camera with me, but I did have my trusty phone, this shot is a panorama shot of the Somerset West vineyards, heading towards the  Strand on the right.

Trail running

Until I started trail running, I thought I was pretty fit (I can run a 21km half marathon without too much difficulty), but after going on two trail runs, I have realised that I am going to need a whole different level of fitness to keep this up.

The group that I have joined start running every Saturday morning around 7am. It means getting up really early on the weekends, but the views on the mountain make it so worth the early start.

On my weekend run, I even tried to fly, but alas did not manage to miss the ground, so a couple of bruised knees and sore left ankle later I completed the 15km route. Note that this was 15km up and down a mountain, not 15km on the level.

I took my happy snappy camera on the last run, so here is just a taste of the experience.

Lion’s Head (left) and Signal Hill (right). Notice how it looks like a lion lying on the ground, hence the name.

Running along Table Mountain, yes those little dots are us

Running towards the Cable Car. The building on the bottom is the lower cable station, and you can see the cable car in the middle. Lion’s head is in the distance.

Cable Cars. Although it was a lovely day, it was still quite misty, here you can see the cables going up into the mist on the top of the mountain. If you come to Cape Town, you must take a trip to the top of the mountain, it is truly magnificent.

So am I hooked on Trail Running? Absolutely, see you on the mountain.

 

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