Sugar Pine Point to Lake Genevieve

I got a ride with my friends Karyn and Scott who were staying for the weekend, and were competing in the Lake Tahoe Triathlon, 1/2 Ironman distance, which started and finished at Sugar Pine Point. We arrived about 6:30 a.m. and they headed to their event, and I headed up into the woods for a long run.

a little bridge on the General Creek Trail

I thought about the last time I had run here, just at the end of the school year, when I had come across a Mama Bear and her cubs in this very section. My mom and kids had been sleeping at our campsite, and I was alone with the bears and no phone (not that a phone offers much protection from a bear)… The mood today was somewhat melancholy- memories of the summer vacation, now coming to an end, drifted through my mind.

I ran up through the Nordic Center at Sugar Pine Point State Park to the single track General Creek Trail. The trail crosses the creek around 4 miles, and then it’s kind of a scramble up to the next trail, at 5 miles. I was under the impression before this was the PCT, but it turns out it is just a connector trail. I wanted to get to the PCT or the TRT, but ended up running on to the Rubicon Jeep Trail (and quickly turned around).

cabin near the Rubicon Jeep Trail


I eventually found a trailhead, 1/2 way between the Rubicon Trail and the General Creek Trail, that led towards the PCT/TRT (2.7 miles). After about 2 miles, I made it into Desolation Wilderness, and then a trailhead – Right to Velma Lakes, or Left to Genevieve. Decided on Genevieve, as I have never been there before.

My foot was really hurting, and about 1 mile from Genevieve, I stopped for more ibuprofen and turned on some Bach Fugues on my iphone. The rest of the run, when I would start hurting again, I would slow down and listen to the Bach. It matched my mood, and got me through it.

I reached Genevieve about 12 miles into the run, and stopped to check it out.

Lake Genevieve, Desolation Wilderness


lake Genevieve
lake Genevieve

On the way back, I took my time and enjoyed the scenery.

General Creek Trail back towards Sugar Pine Point
General Creek Trail back towards Sugar Pine Point

I took a little detour to check out Lily Pond (would have been a lot prettier at the beginning of summer), and then once I got down to the Nordic Center, I was dropped right into the run portion of the Lake Tahoe Triathlon. The further I went, cheering on the runners, I sucked up some of their enthusiasm and was able to run fairly strong through the park, across the road, and to the finish at the Mansion. I had a little chase with the eventual 3rd place overal finisher, for the last mile. All the volunteers and spectators cheered me on like I was doing the race (oh well).

My run ended up being 23 miles, with 2,936 feet of climbing.

I hung out at the finish line until Scott and Karyn finished- Scott ended up 4th Place Age Group and Karyn ended up First Place Age Group. It was a nice afternoon.

Scott finishing strong
Scott finishing strong
Karyn finishing her race on the steep final climb
Karyn finishing her race on the steep final climb
Scott and Karyn at the awards ceremony
Scott and Karyn at the awards ceremony
Karyn and Scott on our walk back to the parking lot.
Karyn and Scott on our walk back to the parking lot.

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