Saturday, October 27, 2007

Kathio State Park

Last night while attending a party given by Troy's football coach for all of the players and family, Steve told me that he and the boys were going to do some hunting today. They'd be home before the 530 wedding and reception we had to attend.

Oooh, I thought, I have a full day to myself..what shall I do? Shopping..ah, not much of a shopper-cleaning..nah, napping..too nice outside..

I'll be having many full days and even weekends to myself soon..deer hunting begins next weekend :)

I recalled when driving home from the Superior 100, I had stopped at the Holiday Gas Station in Duluth and saw on the shelf "Minnesota Running Trails", written by my friend, Kate Havelin. I hadn't seen it around yet, and was excited to purchase and read this book. I figured I'd read it and maybe hike some of the trails Kate writes about during my recovery from Superior.

I came home, read the book in two days, loved it, and became very busy with football/fall baseball and recovery ended up only taking a week. I hadn't visited any of the trails in this gem of a book.

Last night when we arrived home, I pulled the book back out, deciding Topaz and I would head out to a new trail.

I decided on the Kathio State Park; only a bit over an hour away, 35 miles of trails, wooded, open, grassy and hilly, it sounded wonderful!

It was wonderful! The park is the 4th largest state park in Minnesota. It is just west of Mille Lacs Lake.I can't believe that I didn't see anyone there for the full day! It is so beautiful. Minnesota is a wonderful beautiful state. This state park is fantastic. Miles and miles of dirt, grass, rocky and some gravel trails. Lots of rolling hills, it is very well marked, I never became lost; and I always become lost!

The trees, although past peak color, were still covered with leaves and still had much of their color left. I saw many oak, maple and birch.

There was a large Interpretive Center that had indoor bathrooms and pop machines. I was able to wash up before heading home.

We ran along ridges, up and down grassy hills, through meadows, through lots of swampy areas.I'm not sure how many miles we ran, but we ran for 8 hours, at least a 50K, probably more. 8 wonderful, quiet, beautiful hours.

I counted up to 35 deer, then quit counting. I counted 3 wolves, too. The wolves made me a bit nervous, but they were more shy of me then I was of them. They made Topaz's hair stand up on his shoulders as he let out a growl.

I will certainly head back out to Kathio again. I had an excellent day. I'm anxious to check out some of the other trails, too.

So much for a cut back in mileage this week. After running over 90 miles last week, I thought I'd aim for 70 this week. After today, I'm up to 82, planning 10 tomorrow.

The weather has just been fantastic. Sunny, mid 50's, too nice not to spend some long hours running. With the family hunting, I have plenty of time.

Next weekend I think I may drive up to Duluth to run the new section of the Superior Hiking Trail. I haven't run that portion and have heard that it is very well done.

I guess I need to get ready for a wedding now. Blech. Two nights in a row=too much social interaction for me. Maybe I'll pass.


Bryan said...

I love Kate's book on Minnesota Trail Running, it has pointed me to lots of great new places - and I love Mille Lacs-Kathio State Park - I went there a few years ago before I decided to settle in Minnesota and it helped make up my mind what a great state this is! The trees and wildlife were terrific. At one point I saw a bald eagle perched right above where a loon was swimming. Sweet.

Anonymous said...

Sounds heavenly! I am going to get the book too! We hike of the Superior hiking trail alot. You basic can not get on a trail in Duluth and not be on the Superior Hiking trail, it's so much fun!

It's great to have days for yourself. I can not even image putting on that many miles either WOW!!! Glad to see the Leaness if working as well!