Monday, May 11, 2015

Tannah's Treehouse

Tannah was completely unfazed by Dog Mountain. She's up for any new challenge.

C'mon, let's lose the leash, OK? Do you see any cars up here?
Tannah's treehouse.
The obstacle course trail took a bit more out of Tannah than she was willing to admit. We took a break at First Lake on our return for re-hydration, and Tannah was already snoozing.

Dog Mountain

Shauna found out about a new trail recently called Dog Mountain. It's actually been around for quite a few years but I'd been unaware of it. The trail starts from the northwest corner of the Mount Seymour parking lot. It begins innocently enough with gravel surfacing, but deteriorates rapidly from there into a morass of rocks and roots. Orange surveyor's tags nailed to the odd tree actually were of assistance at some points along the trail.

However it's quite popular, and while the viewpoint at the end is indeed spectacular, the 2.5 km journey in between is definitely challenging.

I think the term "trail" is used rather loosely here.
Here's First Lake. We weren't too concerned that we'd neglected to bring swim suits.
About midway along the trail, past First Lake, a persistent repetitive noise registered with me. At first I thought it was from a child ahead of us on the trail hitting a bongo drum of some kind. But the more often I heard it, the more it seemed to be too uniform. Five or six muffled thumps in a row. Then silence. Then five or six more thumps. The sound continued for the mid portion of the trail until after awhile I noticed I hadn't heard it for awhile. On the way back the same pattern emerged. I'm wondering if it wasn't an owl. I don't really know what would make me think that. The sound most certainly wasn't a traditional "Hoo hoo" that we're taught owls make.

The summit is worth the scramble. All of Vancouver and Burnaby are visible. We could even see Point Roberts in Washington State.
The summit is a popular foodie hang-out for the Ravens. They're as bad as Crows for scavenging errant crumbs. Not shy at all, those birds

The view to the west is equally as impressive as the south. It just seems like the edge of the world.

Thursday, May 7, 2015


My 8 km contribution to the Vancouver BMO marathon was as success last weekend. My goal had been 48 minutes, based on my sub-hour time for the recent Vancouver Sun Run. I came very close: 49 minutes. But what's really cool is that a 49 year old man was the first to cross the 8K finish line. That's not too far from my age, so I'm impressed. Us old guys still got it in us.

I guess I'm doing OK with this running gig. I looked up some stats for this year's 8K and it turns out I placed 17th out of 52 for my age category (M45-49); top third, and more surprisingly, 372nd place out of 1642 finishers. In other words I placed within the top 22.6% of the field. I'm quite stunned actually.

As you can tell, I'm too cheap to pay 60 bucks for an official photo. (And I thought the Vancouver Sun Run photos were expensive!)

I should have taken a selfie closer to the finish line (that bright blue spec in the distance) but the race officials kept guiding everyone further along to clear the lane for incoming foot traffic.

Saturday, May 2, 2015

Hummingbird Update

Last week I saw a hummingbird twice in our front yard. Those were the first two sighting I've had since the youngster took his first flight from the nest, probably more than a month ago now.

This morning I sensed motion outside the bedroom window and saw the green-backed hummingbird (I don't know if it's the male or female) buzzing the nest. I grabbed my camera and managed to record a short video as it was sitting in the nest. I wonder if we'll be lucky enough that they raise another chick here.

SunRun 2015 Result

I thought it was about time I posted my SunRun time for this year. I don't really have an excuse for the delay; it was 2 weeks ago. Life's been busy.

I achieved my goal of a sub-one hour time; 58:13.

Here's me with Brian, a fellow Sunrunner, my running partner from the Renfrew Community Centre.

And here's the official SunRun photo. As you can tell, I'm too cheap to buy it. 
Tomorrow is another one. I signed up for the BMO 8K run. The weather's supposed to be perfect for a run through Stanley Park and Coal Harbour.

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Easter Car Culture

I realized just now that I forgot to get any family photos from our Easter dinner yesterday. We held it a day early this year due to scheduling conflicts, but I kinda like having another day off after the actual holiday.

 We came across an interesting art installation today at False Creek near Science World. It's an interesting statement on car culture to be sure.

 I like the way they scrunched up the Mercedes into Smart Car size.

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Mt Seymour Demonstration Forest 10K run

This morning our Sun Run training group traveled to the base of Mount Seymour in North Vancouver for the hill training component. The distance markers are clearly delineated along the trail, and my goal is always to reach the 5K post by half time to give me an estimate for my upcoming 10K Sun Run.

The training group is split up into smaller divisions: walkers, 2 groups of Learn to Run, and the Run Stronger group. Since my knees had given me grief the previous 2 training sessions, I decided to go with ten and ones instead of joining the faster Learn to Run group which was doing 40 minutes before a 1 minute walk break, followed by another 20 minutes. It turned out to be a very successful strategy; no knee issues and a 10K time of about 57 minutes according to my stopwatch.

Not the greatest selfie in the world, but all I wanted was photographic evidence that I'd achieved the halfway marker.

And bear sightings! Although I have to admit that would have made a pretty cool photo op.