After work I drove over to West Branch State Park and met up with Bob, Jim, my brother, and his friend Mark, for a night run/off-piste hike. The temperature was probably in the upper 20's and surprisingly it felt pretty good compared to the cold temps that we've had lately. It's supposed to get up to around 40 degrees tomorrow, which will feel really nice, but that will be short lived since another arctic blast is moving in tomorrow night and will last through next week, keeping low temps in the single digits.
We began our evening running & walking across the large "Michael J Kirwan" lake that is in the middle of the park and measures approx. 6.5 miles from one end to the other. There was a spot that had a few holes in the ice from fishermen and Bob stuck a stick down into it to see how solid the ice was. I think he said it was at least 6-8 inches thick. We then continued running across the ice which had a few inches of snow on top to give good traction. Every once in awhile we would veer off to the right and hop back onto land to do some off-piste exploring. The sky was beautiful tonight with the stars and planets shining brightly down on us, and the light that shined onto the wispy clouds made it a gorgeous sight to see. We stopped a couple times to admire this and then eventually we headed back to our cars and finished with a little over an hour of running. Just enough to get my legs moving again after last weekend's 50K.
During our run on the ice we noticed how it didn't seem like we were getting anywhere very quick due to the size of the lake. That got me thinking.... A run around the entire perimeter of the frozen lake could be interesting! So, when I got back home tonight I went online and plotted out the entire perimeter of the lake and surprisingly the distance came very close to a 50K (31 miles). I'm pretty excited about this idea since it would be something different to do and if I get motivated enough maybe I could attempt it this weekend. Anyone interested?? If not this weekend though it shouldn't be a problem because the cold temperatures throughout next week will keep everything frozen.