Jun 1, 2021
Today’s world run entails the centre of South Dakota, when I ran through the capital, Pierre, in late May of 2012. The video shows me crossing the Missouri River. It’s very wide, despite being so far upstream and not all that far from its source.
Yesterday I did my normal faster effort, running 400 metres in 74 seconds. I’m sure I’ll get that down to 72 before long. Still, the days when I could do 400 metre sprints in training in 54 secs is a distant memory (PB of 51.2, but that was when I was 16).
May 29, 2012
Distance today = 47.78 km; Total distance = 6959.99 km; Location = Vivian – 43 55.378′ N, 100 19.140′ W; Start time = 0900, Finish time = 1606
I am discovering that the prairies, despite their relative uniformity, can be quite scenic. I reached the top of a hill this morning to be greeted by a 360 degree view, and in every direction the Earth appeared to drop away over the horizon. It’s an effect – the curvature of the Earth – that I’ve only seen previously when looking out to sea.
I have been running the past couple of days on the US16. This is another old highway that has been superseded by an interstate freeway. There has been almost no traffic, despite it being an excellent surface. I wished I could run on roads like this all the time.
I had a fairly strong tailwind behind me most of the day, which at one point blew my cap off from behind. It went tumbling down the road like it was trying to escape from me, but I was in no hurry to chase it – it was going in my direction. I eventually caught it some distance further on – bad cap!!!
There were no shops on the route today, so Carmel brought me a very nice roast beef, avocado, and mustard potato salad sandwich she’d made up for lunch – delicious!!!
I also passed a series of beehives in the afternoon. I didn’t think anything of it at first, until I realised I was amongst a swarm of bees. Luckily they weren’t in an angry mood, as none stung me. It’s still quite frightening, as I’ve heard of cases where the whole swarm can attack for no reason, leading to a potentially fatal outcome.
I have also crossed another time zone. I am now in the same zone as cities like Chicago, which is currently nine hours ahead of Sydney (minus a day). When I started running in the US in February, I was only five hours ahead of Sydney.
A big thank you to the Sioux Motel in Murdo for a great discount rate on the accommodation the past two nights. It’s certainly appreciated. Thanks Bonnie.
May 30, 2012
Distance today = 53.28 km; Total distance = 7013.27 km; Location = Pierre – 44 22.231′ N, 100 21.579′ W; Start time = 0908, Finish time = 1648
Some days you expect to be tough, and when they aren’t, it’s a real bonus. Today was a case in point.
The weather forecast was for a cold and rainy day, and it was. Added to that, there were no towns at all along the way – just grassy, treeless prairies. But I felt good despite the weather and terrain, and ran strongly all day.
Because of the lack of “purchasing opportunities”, Carmel brought me out a Big Mac for lunch on the road. Basic but effective.
I reached a couple of milestones today. I passed the 7,000 km mark and I crossed the Missouri River as I ran into Pierre. Pierre is the capital of South Dakota. With a population of just over 13,000, it is the second least populous state capital in the US. From what I can see, however, it looks to be a very nice place, nestled snugly up against the Missouri River, which is about 600 metres wide at this point.
When I reached our motel, I was met by Nick from the Capital Journal, who conducted an interview. I also learned that the Days Inn Motel has provided us with a great rate, and an upgrade to a room with a jacuzzi – I can’t wait to sample it. Thanks Days Inn Pierre.
May 31, 2012
Distance today = 50.78 km; Total distance = 7064.05 km; Location = Harrold (5 km west of) – 44 31.609′ N, 99 48.300′ W; Start time = 0927, Finish time = 1710
As I’ve said before, you just can’t pick ’em. After a strong run yesterday, I was expecting to be powering today, but I felt terrible during the morning, only picking up after about 2 pm.
Part of this was due to the fact I was running on a busy road with no shoulder. This is the worst type of road to run on. I was constantly jumping off the road surface on to the rough gravel to avoid cars. I just couldn’t find a rhythm.
However, after 30 km I reached the intersection of US14 and US83. After this, the traffic volume reduced dramatically, and the shoulder widened just as dramatically – bliss for a runner.
All the same, running on the constant camber facing the oncoming traffic has resulted in a sore right ankle. I’ll have to be careful to ensure this doesn’t escalate into anything more serious.
Today I crossed the 100 degree west meridian. There was a sign by the roadside signifying the fact. It also explained that, due to an incorrect report by surveyors in the early 1800s, that everything west of 100 degrees was a desert, banks would not lend to anyone wanting to settle beyond this imaginary line. It caused a lot of economic hardship in the Dakotas for quite some time.
And to finish, a very happy birthday to my daughter, Grace. Have a good one!
Jun 1, 2012
Distance today = 50.77 km; Total distance = 7114.82 km; Location = Ree Heights – 44 31.801′ N, 99 10.279′ W; Start time = 0840, Finish time = 1625
It was a pretty standard day, until a huge thunderstorm materialized during the afternoon. It soon engulfed me as it swept in from the north-west, but lasted no longer than ten minutes. Within half an hour the sun was back out. There’s nothing quite like the sun after a thunderstorm. I was almost dry by the time I stopped running.
I ran along a straight road all day long, through very flat wheat farming country. There was a large water tower at about the half way point. I could see it 25 km in the distance when I started, watched it for hours as it grew on the horizon, and then as it disappeared behind me.
My right ankle was still giving me grief today. I will need to be careful to avoid it getting any worse.