A blog about my life, fitness and fun! (...and maybe a few cat pictures...)

A blog about my life, fitness and fun! (...and maybe a few cat pictures...)

Monday, January 18, 2016

I miss the trail!

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Today's regularly scheduled Weekend Wrap Up will be posted tomorrow! I have off for MLK day, so it is technically still my weekend!

Also, before I being, I want to give a HUGE congratulations to Heather @ Girl Goes Running who PR'ed in the half marathon yesterday. Also, Suzy @ The Runs ran a marathon with her husband yesterday... the day after she won first female in a 5k! Congratulations, ladies! And be sure to head over to their blogs and check out their race recaps!



On Saturday, Paul and I actually did something. Instead of just laying around the house and "freelancing" (doing whatever we want) or "freelisting" (doing whatever we want but also in the process checking things of our to do list), we got our butts out of bed and enjoyed the world that exists outside our little home.

We hopped on 81 North and headed to Funck's Restaurant in Fort Indian Town Gap. I have seen signs for this place for years but had never been there. It was very nice inside- not bright and glaring diner but warm and inviting. 



I had eggs over easy with toast and a huge plate of bacon. Paul had a bacon and cheese omelette. I stole some of his home fries and orange juice.


And there was coffee, Lots and lots of coffee!

Literally right beside the restaurant was Fort Indiantown Gap National Cemetery. That is where my Uncle Jack, who passed away in November, is buried. I didn't know how close we were going to be to the cemetery, but when we realized it was literally right there, we knew we had to stop and see Uncle Jack. It took Paul a few minutes, but he figured out where in the cemetery he was buried as well as a map of the grounds. (The place is huge, you have to know where you are going. Thank goodness one of us has a smartphone!)



The entire premises was nice and well kept. It did not take us long to find his grave. There were wreaths on every grave, which I thought was very nice.

After we paid our respects to Uncle Jack, we headed to Swatara State Park, which was only about 10 minutes away. This park has (among other things) a series of mountain biking trails that are arranged in very convenient loops. Years ago, I used to run at this park all the time with my other trail running friends. It is beautiful, and I always considered it one of my favorite places to run.


Isn't it awesome!?

When we pulled into the parking area, there were mountain bikers getting ready to take off. They had a cute dog with them. They were all donned in bright orange vests. I remembered that it is still hunting season and with it being a Saturday, there could be hunters out there. Luckily, I had on a pink jacket with my bright yellow Boston shirt underneath. Paul was in all dark colors, but we'd be chatting the entire hike, and I knew my piercing voice would echo through the woods and we would not be mistaken for deer or whatever the hell is in season right now.

Unfortunately, before we took off, a hunter approached us to tell us he lost his beagle a couple hours ago (the dog saw a deer and chased after it) and that if we saw it, would we give him a call? This obviously devastated me and I was hoping with all my heart we would find the dog during our hike and be able to return it to it's owner. Unfortunately, that did not happen.



I am not a mountain biker, so I can't describe the difficulty of the trails from a biking standpoint, but from a hiking/running standpoint, they are easy. Not too many hills and no ankle twisting rocks. I hike a bit faster than Paul, but I tried to reign it in a bit. At one point he took a break so I ran a one mile loop without him. It felt SO GOOD to fly through the woods!


Where's Megan!?


We ended up hiking 4 miles and I ran 1 mile. There are three loops that hook up with the main parking lot, and after 2 miles, I urged Paul to do the last loop. I thought it would only be a mile like the other loops. Wrong. It was 2 miles. We were really tired and couldn't wait to be done! Another reason we couldn't wait to be done was because when there was about a mile left, we started to hear lots of gunshots. It really freaked me out. I was convinced I was going to have my brains blown out right there on the trail from some stray bullet. I don't trust people at all. I took off my coat to display my bright orange shirt and Paul and I talked loudly. 

Unfortunately, it sounded like we were walking toward the gunshots. And we were. We eventually came upon the hunters that were walking through the woods shooting at who knows what. I hate guns and I hate hunters because they really cramp my style when I trail run. Oh, and I hate people that post pictures of dead deer on Facebook. If you are from Pennsylvania, you know what I am talking about.

Despite the annoying hunters, I really want to go back to Swatara and run (perhaps on a Sunday!?), but I am weary of doing it alone. So I need friends! Who wants to run at Swatara with me!?  I miss running trail so much. I am sick of my neighborhood.


Oh, I forgot to mention that when I got home from work on Friday, Paul had shaved his head! He had huge patches falling out, so the head shave was past due. I love it!


Do you have a favorite trail?
Ever have any scary run ins with hunters?
What is your favorite breakfast to get at a diner?

36 comments:

  1. That looks like such a beautiful trail and every stick IS a snake in opinion!!! I hate those things.

    Thanks so much for the shout out!! :)

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    1. At least in the winter we don't have to worry about them. :)

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  2. What a super fun date! Looks like an amazing place to run (p.s. I am sick of my 'hood too!). I think Paul looks great w/ his head shaved. Enjoy your day off--I am off today too so we are going to a movie (shocker).

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    1. Susan, I think you have a movie problem. ;) JK!!!

      Have you seen the new Leo Dicaprio one? I saw him on Ellen and I really like him as a person. The movie looks like it's shot in a beautiful place but I hear it is SO gory...

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    2. Yes, we are seeing the Revenant today. I really also want to see 13 Hours in Benghazi so we will see that on Saturday.

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  3. I grew up Huntingdon and we actually had days off to hunt! Buck Day and Doe Day! It was always weird to us because my dad is NOT a hunter (he does not like guns).
    Your husband looks great - my husband shaves his head and has a huge beard. He looks scary, but is the most gentle man I know.
    oh and my grandfather is also buried at Indian Town Gap. Kristen

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    1. We had off for doe as well. I grew up in Millersburg, so a lot of hunters. It was strange to me too because my family does not hunt. And I just don't want to be around guns, I don't trust people!

      Indiantown Gap was very nice- glad there is a nice cemetery for veterans!

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  4. Looks like fun! We don't have any trails like that nearby. There are running trails but not so much for exploring or hiking. I would definitely be freaked out knowing there were so many hunters nearby!

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    1. I know the AT runs through MD. Have you ever run on that?

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    2. No, I haven't! I just had to look up where it was and it looks like its kind of far out in western MD. Maybe if I got really adventurous I would head out there and give it a try!

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    3. You know there may be places on the AT in PA that are closer to you!

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  5. We are in the process of discovering some great trails right by our house. Our hunting season ended Jan 1, so I feel much safer going into the woods. I still wear florescent pink on trails all the time though. I think running or hiking the trails is good for the soul.
    I like the new look, Paul.
    So I am catching up on past blogs. It is a good idea to go with your gut--if you aren't feeling the marathon now. It would make training an extra challenge.
    Favorite composer...Brahms...

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    1. It is sooooo cool you have trails right by your house! I have to look up our hunting season info. I want to know what they were shooting at. Bright colors in the woods is always a safe bet, I agree. I have not heard much of Brahms!

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  6. Oh no, I really hope the hunter and dog were reunited. Nothing hurts my heart more than when pets get lost. I just can't imagine how that feels and I never want to.

    I don't trust people with guns and I have to hide all posts or unfriend people who hunt. My step-father was from PA and he and his son were/are hunters. I don't like his son anyways, but seeing the deer pictures put me over the edge and gave me reason to unfriend. One time he posted the pictures directly to my mom's Facebook wall and as I was casually stalking my mom I saw them! UGH!

    Hope you have a great day off with that handsome guy at the end of your post eating delicious Chinese buffet food today!

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    1. lol thank you Kristina!!!! :) Tomorrow's post: How to get the most bang for your buck at a Chinese buffet!!!! ;) jk!

      I hope they were reunited too. I am trying not to think about it. I want to get a dog someday to take out on the trails but I would need to put a chip in it or something because I would never be able to forgive myself if it ran off and got lost.

      I don't get the deer pictures. It is a DEAD FREAKING ANIMAL. When people fight with me over this, I tell them, "make an album on fb, make the cover picture of your album you in your hunting gear, and then put the dead deer photo (if you simply HAVE TO POST IT) in the album so that they only people who are subjected to it are the ones that looked at your album of hunting pictures."

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  7. Sounds like a great weekend adventure! Those trails are pretty. Even in January. I have a FB friend who posts pics of her 9 year old with deer he's killed. Ugh. I do hear gunshots on certain running routes around here. Hi-viz gear is my friend!

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    1. Eww :( I would have to click "hide" so fast.

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  8. Yay trail running...yeah the gun shots would freak me out too. We have a gun range near some trails i love and hearing them just sounds strange. Can't get used to it. Tell Paul the hair is awesome, looks great.

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    1. Thanks I will let him know!

      There are so many gun ranges where I grew up. Scary!

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  9. You always feel so much more productive when you get up to do something. That was the perfect breakfast before your hike. Love diner food! We don't have any trails like that close by in our area. The trail we go to has no hunters there so that's a plus.

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    1. Is your trail like a rail trail or paved?

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  10. There are a few trail near us. I don't think ^Lacey knows about them..lol. Scott and I have been out on even a paved trail before where we heard shots and it freaked him out. I was the one convincing him it was fine. Really though I don't understand why hunters are allowed to even shoot places where there is a possibility of people walking or running or hiking. -M

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    1. I know the rule is you are not allowed to shoot across trails and you have to know the lay of the land to know if there are trails or not. I just don't trust everyone to do this. :(

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  11. What gorgeous trails!!!

    I'd hate being in trails with active hunters, too. That's how people get accidentally shot! And they disturb the peace and quiet of nature.

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    1. I know, I am too scared to google how many people get accidentally shot in the woods. :( I do know someone from my hometown who accidentally shot another hunter while hunting and the man died.

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  12. There are trails throughout the Forest Preserve where I run, but I don't run on them because I run alone there. It's a little dicey in those preserves!

    I don't mind hunters if they eat what they shoot. But hunting just for sport really bothers me.

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    1. What is dicey- are there weird people around?

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  13. I haven't run trails in a long time but I really enjoyed it. I think because of the challenging terrain, it took my mind off what I was actually doing. :)

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    1. It is definitely more challenging than running on the road, but you run on the beach, right? That is even harder!

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  14. Favorite breakfast --> Definitely an omelet loaded with everything.

    We don't have a lot of trails around here where you would run into hunters...but that would freak me out. I would wear all the bright colors!

    Paul is seriously so handsome.

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    1. Aw thanks Kristen! The trails in your neck of the woods are certainly gorgeous! Your blog should be an ad for Oregon adventure travel!! :)

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  15. Fun fact #1: Jere and I ate at Funk's with his family on the day he left for basic training. I will always remember it because he shoveled the food in - Army style. We all sat there staring at him in both awe and disgust. :)

    Fun Fact #2: My nana and pop pop are buried at Ft. Indiantown Gap. Pop pop was a WWII vet. It's a gorgeous place.

    Fun Fact #3: The wreaths were probably from Wreaths Across America. They do that at every military/national cemetery across . . . America (the dotdotdot is because I literally realized how asinine I sounded).

    Fun Fact #4: (Also titled, I started doing this and don't know how to stop it so everything I say is going to have "Fun Fact" by it even if it's not actually a fact at all) I have never been to Swatara despite its proximity to where I grew up.

    Fun Fact #5: I'd run trail with you!

    Fun Fact #6: I haaaaaaaate dead deer photos, too. Ugh.

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    1. Awww now I will always think of you and Jeremy when we go to Funck's because I know we will be going back! They have t-shirts and I want a t-shirt!

      I saw some people advertising Wreaths Across America and now I wish I would have donated to it.

      I WISH YOU HAD BEEN TO SWATARA!!! Maybe next PA trip????

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  16. You guys had such a fun day together!!! What a cool trail - I saw those pictures on Facebook and thought it looked gorgeous!! You should come for a visit and run at the Trexler Game Preserve with me. I love to run trails!! It's such a different, challenging workout. It's like strength training!! What an awesome way to spend the weekend :)

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    1. I would love to visit and run with you! Gonna google Trexler right now!

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