Today I decided to run in Gold Stream Park and tackle Mt. Finlayson, a large diorite dome that errupts from the banks of gold stream at sea level. Mt. Finlayson is a short but steep trail that climbs from sea level to 1375 feet in just a few kms. The trail starts out fairly smooth and steep and is runnable but once you reach the shoulder of the mountain you enter multiple class three pitches with rocks wore smooth from hikers and past glaciers. It actually is about the most technical stuff I have attempted on the island. It took me about 28 minutes to top out but I wasn't feeling that well due to a sore neck from a restless night which lead to a morning headache. I was a bit dizzy off and on and it definitely isn't a trail to have any sort of fainting spell. I took it relaxed and power hiked the majority of the upper trail. The run down was quite dangerous with many spots where it would be easy to get out of control or lock ball-bearing gravel under your tread and slide of a ledge. I took a nice controlled descent and I can't for the life of me figure out how I got off the trail (it is extremely straight forward with bright orange markers everywhere) but before I knew it I was in the middle of the bush, whacking my way towards the general direction of the trail. I picked the main trail back up and flew through the last km of the trail like it was nothing. I ended up finishing the round trip in about 45 minutes, which is a pretty short run for me but I think that the steepness and length of the climb spiced up the variability of my weekly regime and I think I will use this one for future hill training and stack multiple summits to really get used to steep 1400 foot climbs and descents over technical ground.
After running Finlayson I headed into school where I whipped up a quick batch of lava. Much like baking cookies but instead of flour and sugar I add Silica (quartz SiO2) and calcium carbonate (limestone). And instead of putting the batch in at 200 degrees celcius I place it in a furnace at 15oo degrees celcius. When it has cooked long enough I pour out the glowing red viscous melt onto a stainless steel plate and now instead of a white or redish powder (from iron) it is a black glass like obsidian.
It was a good day with a steep summit of finlayson followed by making some lava. My life is awesome!
I decided to throw some Arcade Fire on my blog since I don't have Canadian music represented yet. This is a group with quite a few members but fronted by a husband and wife team from Montreal. This song "Keep the Car Running" is one of many favs by the band and I think it is a great song to have playing in the noodle during a crazy trail run like today. Check out more of their stuff, they have tons of different weird instruments that they incorporate in genius ways.