Two Roads Diverged

Happy 11.11.11 Everyone! 

Now that I am not in Missouri anymore, I am running wild. Literally. I am ON the path less taken. Where I am these days is miles from civilization and so I have been running on trails, logging roads, abandoned fire access roads and other secluded roads in order to get my miles in. As you can see from the photos from last week, they are some beautiful places to run, especially in the fall.

Running into people or cars is not really an issue for me here. However, I may run into many other interesting things instead. Like the huge pile of bear scat that I narrowly missed the other day while on my long run. I grew up in the area, so am not particularly afraid of the wild animals. However, one must be careful, especially now when some of the animals are foraging for winter and sometimes come down a little lower on the mountains to find more food.

Instead of cars, here are some of the things you may run into in my neck of the woods. Once again, this is in a very literal sense.

Black Bear and Paw Print
Beaver, Grey Squirrel, Feral Pig, Skunk
River Otter, Mule Deer, Red Fox
Mountain Lion
All photos were taken from The Laws Field Guide to the Sierra Nevada by John Muir Laws. This book is awesome. It details all the plants, animals, prints and scat of the local area. If you are into plants, animals and scat like I am (hehe), you would love this book, or a similar book, for your area.

Do you live in the city or the country? What animals might you encounter near your house? Have you ever gotten too close for comfort to any of them?


  1. We live in the city right now, it's exactly a 5 mile run to the state capital building (but then you have to run the 5 miles back!) so it's a great urban route. But I'm a country boy. Kelley likes this city shit, I'll take the suburbs any day, or even lots of acreage in the middle of nowhere.

  2. I like in the city, as you know! But when i lived in my old condo, I would run in the mornings and sometimes I would encounter deer! I had a deer run in front of me one morning when I was running before sunrise and it scared the crap out of me!

  3. I have the options for city running or not-so-city running. It just depends on the route and how far.

    There is one path that I love to run but it's heavily wooded and I admit to worrying about coming across an animal that is bigger and faster than me.

  4. Oh my gosh! I live in the city so the most exciting thing you will run into is probably a squirrel or someone's dog...on a leash. I don't know what I would do if I saw a bear!

  5. Hey there! I just popped over and see that you've completely revamped your blog. WOW! Looks great around here. :)

    I also see that you've JUST run and 1/2 marathon and in 22 days you'll run a FULL marathon?!?! Am I reading this correctly? I am so impressed! I just ran a 10k, but only b/c my sister signed me up. I'm into fitness, but I'm not a distance runner. I've tried, but I just can't seem to go farther than 4 miles. :)

    There are lots of races (even marathons) here in Virginia Beach. If you ever decide to do one, look me up, girl!!! :)

  6. I live in a fairly rural area but not far from more populated places. Most of my runs are suburban neighborhoods.

    Gators can be an issue in my area but thankfully I have seen one.

  7. The only wild animals I'm seeing on my runs are squirrels and the occasional loose dog. Do you take some kind of protection with you just in case?

  8. Looks like in some ways you need to watch out where you go but on the other hand what a great opportunity for some great pictures!

  9. Feral pigs? That's crazy!

    The only wild animals I see in my neck of the woods are cats and the neighbor's children. I live smack of the middle of miles of city and suburbia.


Thanks for commenting! Any suggestions, tips or praise you have is always welcome!