I woke up yesterday to realize that I was supposed to be going on a 1.4 mile run to Hut Point and back. Ugh. Not the way I like to start mornings but the event had been well planned and if I kept at a decent pace I would be able to finish and make it to work on time.
Hut Point is on one side of the the station, it’s a bit of a ways out, .7 miles I guess. It’s Shackleton’s Hut, the one that he never made it back to. It’s the one that his men lived in, an Australian design, so it wasn’t exactly heat efficient. Everyday they would hike out across what is now McMurdo station and up Ob Hill to watch for Shackleton’s arrival.
I was only running from the Coffee House to Hut Point. Before I was even able to act on my second thoughts I ran into Justin and Melissa. He’s crazy, she’s hardcore, just the pep talkers I needed to convince me to not back out.
Just to make things more fun the weather was Condition 2 for windchill and what a wind and what a chill it was. There was hot coffee, brunch and orange juice being served in the Coffee House, everyone was all geared up in expert looking clothes, I was just hoping I would have enough energy to run and keep warm.
Well, I froze. We all froze. Simone told me that she checked the weather before we left and it said -78. It was interesting to watch the crazy people running along. We left the Coffee House, ran up the little hill, the one that’s more like a wind tunnel, past 155 where I work, the dorm/cafeteria/offices. There was a left turn at the stop sign and then on out of town, basically all down hill. It sort of looks like running down a gravel pit, you’ve got the hillside on one side and a drop off to the dock where the ship does off load on the other side. There were a couple generators running temporary light poles so we could “see” but my eye lashes iced up from all the tears that the wind brought on.
My favorite part of the run was getting back inside. I knew I probably had some problems since my cheeks had been exposed the entire time and that I had ice cubes hanging from my eyes that didn’t bother me. I was also extremely light headed and walked most of the way back just to keep from falling over. Darn early mornings.
The firefighters were all there to check up on the 35 runners as they returned. It was just so much fun. First, get looked at by Lt. Dan, then Andre, then Ronnie. The first problem I found was my left ear. When I felt it all I could tell was that there was something on my head and logic told me that this would be the location of my ear. It felt like a solid piece of ice, this would be frostbite.
The rest of the day was slow and easy, Sundays always are. It was fun to question other runners at the dish window to see where everyone’s frostbite was. Jana has it on her thumb, cheek, nose and ear. Sarah got some on her thighs and face. Her boyfriend had it on all the tips of his fingers.
The fastest time was 9 min. and something. Which should tell you something because that guy is uber fit, that wind was just insane. Jana won for women’s time with 12:17. I think I was 19:10, one of the last. Anyways, it was a blast and now I have frostbite, a story, and a T-shirt to go with it. TTFN