Running Against The Daylight - West Virginia / by sam taylor

Running Against the Daylight - West Virginia

It's cutting it close.  I got a late start, with the rain and all.  But I do feel good, I feel "fast", at least for a guy my age with a desk job.  I probably have 3 miles in 30 minutes in me, even in these conditions.

The road across the field is beautiful, the sun casting the "after storm" glow in the western sky, but boy, it's going to be dark down in those woods.

I turn down the hill.  The blackberries will be on soon, I see their little green-not-quite-ripe berries on the plants as I fly by.   Yup, it's going to be dark in these woods.

The trail downhill is slick, muddy, just carry speed, don't fight it.  I feel my feet slipping around...  just stay over the top, stay centered.  At the landing, it's dark - don't trip! - but I can see blooms on the mountain laurel and the rhododendron, and I can see the light at the canyon rim. 

Standing on the overlook, I'm glad I came, and I catch my breath.  Get a drink of water.  It's humid.  Man, is it humid.  The mists are moving down valley fast enough to see them move, to see the river peek out from under them.  I watch for a minute, but realize that I have to get out of here before it is pitch black.  I didn't bring a headlamp, and we've had a couple of "near epics" out here at dark. 

Turning back up the hill, this is the hard part.  Sprint uphill, dig, breathe, dig, breathe.  As I reach the top, I can see the first stars appear - but out here on the road, I like my chances, and it's nearly all downhill from here. 

Breathe.  Stay light.  Don't trip.  I startle a deer, and feel like one a little bit, running through the dark.  But at least I know how to stay out of the road. 

Back to the truck.  Dripping.  Man, is it humid.  But I feel good.  I felt fast.  33 minutes, including my stop. 

The old girl rumbles to life.  Headlights on.  Now for the best part.  The breeze in the windows as I head back home with the radio on.  A glorious summer night in WV, running against the daylight.

Running Against The Daylight - West Virginia