Putting the Third Word back into the Blog.

Oh, this entry could have so many fun and entertaining titles.  First Run of the FallChris and Charlie Go BigBiting Off More Than He Can Chew:  Chris and Charlie Go Too Big.  These are all great nominations...

Ever since we took a few late spring runs from Barker Pass, I've been interested in doing a point-to-point run from Barker Pass right back to the cabin by running past Ellis Peak and down the Homewood Ski Area.  So this afternoon Charlie and I set off to do just that, passing by a nice family who hadn't quite made it to Ellis Lake, crossing the windy Ridge 8514 (named for its highest point), then made it to Ellis Lake in pretty good time - 3 miles in about 45 minutes with about 1000 feet climbed and only half that descended.

One more mile and a final 600-foot climb with a quick detour led to the summit of Ellis Peak (8740 ft), before the grand finale:  a grueling 2500-foot descent almost to the very shore of Lake Tahoe.  Just as we reached the hillside above Lake Louise, at about 7750 ft elevation, my right knee started to complain.  By the time we reached Rainbow Ridge, I couldn't bend, weight and flex my knee while heading downhill.  Uphill seemed to be OK, but downhill was out of the question.  I had to walk.

An hour and half later I finally walked into the cabin, and had to answer all of Patsy's worried questions.  Especially, "Why didn't you take your cell phone?!"  Which is a good one, since I cringe at the idea of really needing to have my cell phone for something as simple as a run.  But it would have been nice to have been met at the bottom of the Homewood ski runs, not having to walk that final half mile back to the cabin with my knee protesting every step.  It would have also helped Patsy's anxiety when my "simple" run started being very late - and she knew I didn't have the cell phone or a headlamp with me.  Something I'll have to think about further.

And I'm not alone in my pain.  Charlie developed a real limp in his right front leg about 30 minutes after arriving at the cabin.  So he's taking aspirin and I'm popping naproxen.

Still, its nice to get out again.  Even if I'm gimping around now.  I'm sure Charlie agrees too.

Statistics.  Barker Pass - Ellis Lake - Ellis Peak - Lake Louise - Homewood.  7-8 miles, 1500 feet climbed, 2980 feet descended.  ORV trail, 4WD Road, and cross-country.  Aproximately 3 hours from car to cabin.