Saturday, May 7, 2011

Running Adventures on the South Shore

If you’ve been following this blog, then you know my last couple of long runs haven’t been great. For whatever reason, my head and body haven’t really felt up to the challenges of  “running long”.  For that reason, I decided it was time for another running adventure – a long run that would be interesting enough to get me excited about hitting the road.

The route I chose was one I’d been wanting to explore for awhile – that is, running down the LaHave River on the east side, catching the LaHave Ferry, and returning on the west side.  I googled the route and estimated that it would be a 34km run (not counting the distance I’d cover on the ferry) – a little longer than I wanted to run, but still do-able.

And what a great choice it turned out to be. Given the length of the run, I gave myself permission to slow my pace a bit and stop to take pictures often.  There was lots to photograph as the east side of the LaHave is lined with older properties with lovely gardens and brightly painted houses.

And when I wasn’t looking at houses, I was enjoying views of the river.  In fact, the road hugged the river for almost the whole route, so I had plenty of time to savour it during the almost 4 hours I was running.

And, of course, I got some wonderful views from the ferry deck.

I have to say a few words about the LaHave Ferry. It’s one of the country’s oldest ferry services. If you get to the south shore, I definitely recommend taking a ride on it.  Foot passengers (runners and cyclists included) ride free of charge so you can park your car on one side or the other and take the ferry over and back just for the fun of it.

Again, in the interest in making today’s run as much fun as it could be, I treated myself to a brief stop at the LaHave Bakery for a coffee and rich chocolate brownie after getting off the ferry. The bakery is housed in an old building rich in local history and decorated with art and memorabilia.

In addition to the river and the lovely old houses, there was quite a lot of local folk art to see en route.

"Hot chick with a cool rod"

I also got a kick out of some of the mailboxes along the way.

In the end, I didn’t quite make it back to our house under my own steam. It turned out to be a little farther to the ferry and back than I estimated so I pulled off the road at my parent"s house (32.8 km from where I started) and called my sister for a lift. Her partner (bless him!) turned up in just a few minutes to drive me the final 4km to our house.
I can honestly that, though tired, I felt really good at the end of today’s run.  Good enough in fact that I was ready to face a soak in icey cold well water. The runners in the crowd will know that cold water baths are a great way to minimize inflammation.  It can be tough to get into the tub but I know from past experience they work - so in I went!

Of course, drinking a steaming hot caffe latte while I soaked made the bath a lot more bearable. It was also nice having Her Majesty's company.  As usual, she followed me into the bathroom and made the most of the opportunity to loll in my sweaty running gear. What a dear, crazy old thing!

So – all in all – a great day of running.  I’ll be looking forward to my next south shore running adventure. Thanks again to my knight in shining armour, to my sister for standing by to take my call, to the LaHave ferrymen who offered words of encouragement as I disembarked, and to the LaHave Bakery for the wonderful brownie and hot coffee.

For a few more pics from my run, click here.


  1. Followed you here from your e-mail to the Bluenose Striders :) Having a good read about your various runs.

    Had to comment here, though, as you ran back to Bridgewater on my running route - I live in Pleasantville. And I love checking out the mailboxes, the boats moored in the river, the gardens. The pic of the "Ironmen Mailboxes" made me smilt - because I know on my way back, when I get there, I'm almost home. I give then a nod and a hello every time :)

    Looking forward to following your running adventures.

  2. Thanks for reading and commenting, Janet. Hope to see you out on the road one day soon!