Monday, August 24, 2009

Running & Birding-Sunday

Photos taken from a morning run/hike at Mount Wachusett on Sunday (yes you heard that right! It has some decent paths for running that I am starting to discover and it is so close to home that it only makes sense ;o) ). Anyhow, I got there at about 9am only to discover that it was just as hot there as it was in my neck of the woods which concerned me because I thought it was going to be cloudy and a little less humid today which is the weather I like to run in most unless running in the deep woods.

Despite the hot sun, I decided to do some of the running right on Mountain Road which is all uphill and didn't last as long as I would have liked to have due to the humidity as well as running for the first time with my daypack which makes it even more challenging. I kept my pack to my basic essentials which were three waters, my camera and a peanut butter and banana sandwich for glycogen of course, but that was just enough weight to make me question my sanity and why the hell I would want to do something like this on a Sunday morning when most are sitting on their patios drinking coffee and reading the paper. I had also noticed you get some awesome views from this road which would make me stop dead in my tracks in the midst of running for a better view and some photos! I would just get my stride and endorphin kick going when I would look to the left of me and see beautiful views of rolling green hills and puffy blue skies and out came the camera and the water of course.

And obviously one must also stop if one hears a bird and there were plenty of those who decided to have some fun on my behalf and play a little game of hide and seek in which most of the time I spent seeking while they were hiding away from both me and my camera. One thing I have noticed while trail running is that running and birding do not necessarily mix. When you are hiking, it is much easier to stop for a picture but when running it can mess you up as you are a little more out of breath. After a while I just accepted this and rationalized that I was practicing a new form of HIIT (or High Intensity Interval Training), popular with sprinters and bodybuilders and continued with my method of running-hiking and birding and was impressed that yes you can actually do all three things at once if you practice long enough!
That's not to say that I didn't find some areas where you could run non-stop and not be distracted by birds. Here is a shot of Bicentennial Trail which offered plenty of opportunities for running without the danger of killing yourself and except for one distraction (which was a flock of Juncos), I managed just fine as the trees were thick enough to block the sun from the trails which is just what I wanted.
Of course, there were other distractions on the wooded trails, including this handsome little toad found on one of the ski trails. Check out the detail on its skin. So cool!

All though he didn't appreciate me crouching down and getting almost nose-to-nose with him for this photo so away he hopped. Prince Charming he was not!


Queen Anne's Lace found along Mountain Road.


Unknown wildflower

Morning dew on a blade of grass.

And shrooms of course, Check out the one above. First time I have seen one like this. Found on Mountain House Trail.

Not sure what this is but thought it was interesting enough to stop for a photo. Found on Harrington Trail.
Ring-billed Gull pics taken at Big Y on Sunday afternoon. I normally don't shop here so was amazed a the number of gulls they get as I didn't have this one my frequent gull spotting list. There were at least 20 of them here and I am guessing they are coming from Lake Ave and Lake Quinsigamond. Love this photo. It reminds of of the Olympics!

First winter Ring-billed Gull? Definate hotspot for common gulls so may start shopping at Big Y a little more to see what else may come around when the weather starts getting cooler!

Take care all

1 comment:

madcobug said...

Looks lie you found quite a few things to take a photo of. Thanks for sharing. Helen

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