All I can say this morning is "wow"! What an amazing background for our early morning trail run. With all that picture snapping, I was barely able to get my run in and the overall time it took us to run 8 miles this morning shows it. But how can you not take as many pictures as possible. These pictures are the last evidence of a White Christmas in Huntsville, Alabama. None of the true locals I know recalled ever celebrating a white christmas in Huntsville. And it wasn't just a little snow, we actually had upwards of 5 inches, which is quite a lot if you're living in the South. While driving conditions kept us off Monte Sano mountain the last couple of days, we were not going to miss this opportunity to run the mountain in snow and ice. The picture below shows Bluffline Trail heading down from the top of Waterline Trail.
James, Richard and I met up at Richard's house at the bottom of Monte Sano mountain at 6AM so we could catch the snow on the mountain in full daylight once we got there. We ran up to road on Bankhead Parkway and turned into Tollgate Road and onto Old Railroad Bed Trail, heading towards and onto Alms House Trail. James wantes to see what Waterline Trail looked like in these weather conditions, so we had decided to run up Waterline Trail and loop back down the mountain and home afterwards.
The picture above shows the bottom of the waterfall at the upper section of the Waterline Trail. There really wasn't enough rainfall this time prior to the snowfall and low temps to create large sheets of ice, but at least we spotted a couple of icicles;-) The trek up Waterline Trail wasn't as bad or icy as we expected. Hikers had pretty much cleared a path the previous day. It wasn't until we started to climb up next to the waterfall that it got a little more challenging. Once we reached the top, we had a great view of the winter landscape around us. The picture below show James and I at the top of Waterline Trail. It is really difficult to look cool in your winter running gear, especially when your face is covered by a mask;-)
But better warm than fashion conscious, I say. Once we reached the top of Waterline Trail we headed down Bluffline Trail. This section was easily the prettiest trail section we ran today. The snow cover made for some awesome pictures.
Like I said, I spent more time snapping photos than running today. Once we reached Tollgate Trail, we had to slow our pace once more to keep our footing on the icy rocks. I loved every minute of this run today. The picture below shows James and Richard continuing on as I stop again to take pictures.