A run in the dark

Mike said to run Jesusita at an easy pace.

Normally I run alone; it’s so much easier not to try to coordinate other people’s schedules. But Tim Smith had been wanting to run trails with me since June, so I emailed him. He wanted to start at 6am. And then Kary asked if I wanted to run Jesusita with her. Only she wanted to start at 5:45.

I was afraid it would be dark, but consoled myself with the thought that the moon would be just past full, and civil twilight would start at 6.

However it was foggy. Densely foggy. The moon was a faint blur above and everything else was black.

Kary had brought Brian and Tim had brought Mike S.

We all set off down the trail and into darkness with Brian in the lead because he was the only one who had brought a headlamp. After the first person tripped, I ran back and got my bike lamp. Thereafter I ran at the back to light feet from behind and Brian ran in front to find the way.

We only got lost once.

There’s something very friendly about running in the dark. The world constricts to the tiny patch of light that includes you and your friends. Nothing seems real except us. You can’t see anything. You can’t hear anything except the fall of feet, and voices floating in the dark.

When we got to the first meadow, I saw the fog was behind us and the moon shone clearly. But it was still dark under the trees.

But it was beginning to get lighter. Soon I turned off my light, though Brian kept his on a bit longer…

It was quite light when the path got steep and we spread out a bit.

It was clear at the top, but the sun hadn’t quite popped over the mountains. Down below the city lay, wreathed in fog, with the tendrils stopping about at the trailhead.


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