Robinson Flat to Drivers Flat – Western States Trail

Saturday, May 19, 2018, Gretchen and I met in Auburn at 6am to begin the chain of carpools that would get us to Robinson Flat, a campground located at mile 30.3 of the Western States 100 mile endurance run. Nearly 2 hours later, with thanks to my coach, mentor and hero Meghan Laws, and her friends Dave and Manoush, the five of us were at Robinson Flat and ready for some adventure. Meghan, Dave and Manoush were doing a loop in theRead more

Marin Ultra Challenge 50 miler 2018

In the week leading up to the Marin Ultra Challenge 50 (MUC for short), I was pretty terrified. I believe I was suffering from a mild case of TRT-PTSD, after the last race I’d entered, the TRT100, didn’t pan out so well. I went into that race feeling strong and ready, but my stomach rebelled and I spent a lot of time in a heap on the side of the trail. I’d trained consistently leading up to MUC, thanks to guidance from Coach Meghan, but after TRT, I knew that anything could happen.Read more

First big storm of 2018 – Truckee

We are on day 2 of a 3-day winter storm, the biggest storm we’ve seen since last year… so far it looks like the predictions below are going to be accurate: Last night, Bev the pup and I went out for a run, in the blizzard, in the dark, and it was ridiculously fun. Dressed properly, I stayed plenty warm for the entire 9.75 miles. The wind picked up here and there, but my Yooper Chook hat protected everything butRead more

Johnson Canyon, Truckee, CA

While driving west up Interstate 80 from Truckee, California, you may notice a beautiful canyon, just north of the Donner Lake exit, in between Truckee and Donner Pass. This canyon, at one time slated for a 200+ home development, was acquired by the Truckee Donner Land Trust in two transactions between 2006 and 2012, effectively protecting it from any future development. Until this point, the canyon was referred to as “Negro Canyon”, in reference to the African-American landowner at the base of the canyon around the turn of the century.Read more

Thanksgiving at Camp Whiskey Jack

Papa’s camp, aka Camp Whiskey Jack, originally built around 1905 and acquired by the Potvins in 1944, sits on a couple of 40s (40-acre parcels) in the middle of the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. Every year since my dad was a kid, the men of the family have headed to camp for Opening Day of Deer Hunting Season (a holiday in the U.P.), and the women joined the following week for the days surrounding Thanksgiving. My parents continued this traditionRead more

Isle Royale Part 6 – 21 mile run on the big island

It was day 4 at Isle Royale National Park, a trail running mecca spread over 400 islands with over 165 miles of trails and 99% designated wilderness, and my sister Lynette (the Ecologist for the Park) and I had plans for a 21 mile loop on the main island. Monday morning, August 14, 2017, Lynette and I set out in her boat, the Universal Special, to head from Mott Island to the big island, for our “big” run of theRead more

Isle Royale Part 5 – Three Mile Hike

(for more stories from my trip to Isle Royale, see parts 1, 2, 3, and 4) It was Day 3 on Isle Royale National Park and although I’d already had 7 moose sightings (on solo runs), my parents and daughter were missing out. Lynette took us by boat to Three Mile, where we tied up to the dock, and headed out on a 3-mile loop. We reached an inland lake, and the whispering ceased. We would need to be really quiet if weRead more

Isle Royale Part 4 – Raspberry Island

(for more information on Isle Royale, see parts 1, 2, and 3) Sunday morning, my parents, sister, daughter and I set out in the Universal Special from Mott Island to Raspberry Island. The old boat was taking on a lot of water, and the bilge wasn’t really working, so my dad and I took turns using a hand pump to bail out the water, then racing up to the front of the boat (where I took this pic) so theRead more