A g-d rattlesnake. It scared the living crud out of me, hissing and rattling and stuff. I leaped high in the air and did a karate kick, just in case he could jump too. He did not, and we both rushed off in opposite directions. I picked up my pace to get to the bridge and back to the trail, and believe me, I was vigilant in looking out for him the second time around. Terrified, in fact.
I figured I had gone at least six miles out, though it turned out to be a quarter mile longer, and after eight and nine miles I was feeling pretty good. The best part was that I wasn't drenched in sweat. I was dehydrating, certainly, but it was a pleasant dehydration that didn't bog me down with its byproducts. I slowed down for the last mile or so and ended up averaging 6:37 for 12.5 miles, feeling a lot better than I had in weeks.
The next morning I woke up at 6 to run a 40-minute tempo around a reservoir and get 10 total in before a day of work, but during my warmup I could tell I hadn't rehydrated from the flights and the run less than 12 hours before. I tried the tempo anyway and made it about eight miuntes before I packed it in and just explored Reno or a while. It's a little skanky, and Sparks, where I ran on Saturday, was mostly buildings for lease.
Ending note: It's been a bizarre week for Pittsburgh's West End, which I have come to love over the last 18 months. I haven't been able to ruminate completely on the murder of Lauren Deis because the details are just so revolting and I haven't really been able to settle my mind around it, but there was some good news. Reprinted from the Tribune-Review's Laurels and Lances:
Laurel: To saving the Old Stone Tavern. Pittsburgh's second-oldest building -- at Greentree Road and Woodville Avenue in the West End -- appears to be on the road to restoration. Thanks to a historic designation, the two-story brick structure dating to the 1780s can't be torn down. It once served as a toll house and might have played a role in the Whiskey Rebellion. Kudos to all those behind the effort to preserve yet another piece of our marvelous history.