A few weeks ago I made the last minute decision to run to Landsborough as a training run for my Run to Paradise project.
This week on the training plan I had a 5 hour adventure run on the cards.
Checking out the map and various routes, I decided the best option would be to run to Halls Gap.
If I were to travel direct from Stawell to Halls Gap it would only be 28km’s.
As I had to cover 5 hours, I got a bit creative and decided on a scenic route, which would cover roughly 37km.
I figured if I ran 34km in 4 hours then 37 would be doable in 5. I also took into consideration that the last 15ish k’s would have all the elevation, and so I allowed extra time for that.
The other thing I had to consider was that it was Easter long weekend. I wanted to avoid the main road and traffic as much as possible.
With my gear set out, I set the alarm for 5:15am.
While it is my day off, I wanted to set out early.
- To avoid traffic
- So I could spend more time with family that was visiting
After a hearty breakfast of peanut butter on toast, I set off.
The first 11km was along the Grampians Rail Trail.
While the rail trail path doesn’t completely go to Heatherlie Quarry, it is flat, quiet and quite picturesque.
Coming off the rail trail I packed away the headlamp. With the sun rising behind me there was plenty of light.
Running towards Mt Dryden, I could feel the drop in temperature that happens as the sun rises. I was cold, and really wished I had worn a shirt instead of a singlet.
I could see a layer of fog hugging the surrounding fields. Telling myself it wouldn’t be for long, I ventured on.
Turning on to Pines Road, I could see the mountains before me. The road is long and straight, but the land changes so it’s always interesting.
Arriving at the Plantation campground at the 3-hour mark, I had already covered 25km. I was travelling far better than expected. Passing the many campers at the Plantation campground, I then followed the Mt Difficult fireline back into Halls Gap.
Looking at my watch I arrived in Halls Gap at 4h30m. I had to cover another 30 minutes. I thought about climbing Mt Chatauqua, but I knew it would be busy with holiday makers.
I also didn’t want to blow out my time. Instead, I decided to add on with the Venus bath’s loop, and then again at the very end with the Fyans Creek loop via Brambuk.
Reaching my destination in a time 4h55 minutes and covering over 41km, I was done.
The run felt strong and I still had plenty more in the tank.
Bring on Paradise!
Now before you ask, why didn’t you just run another 800m and then you could say you ran a marathon.
I will tell you that I just don’t care. Yep, that’s right. I don’t have to have a number like that to know I can do it.
Top: Adidas orange singlet
Bottoms: Boody Shorts
Bra: Panache Sports
Undies: Kmart sports
Socks: Skin Compression
Shoes: Saucony Kinvara 10’s
Fuel: Water, Tailwind, huck nutrition, Goulburn Valley fruit pouch, spring energy gels