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My first big trail-running fall

May 12, 2009

Out on a 15-miler with Rob Clark, after taking a moment to take in the view from a high point on the trails over Bull Creek, I took a wrong step and found myself on the ground trying to figure out what just happened.  Very little, actually – I wasn’t running fast or uphill or downhill or on particularly technical terrain.  I wasn’t particularly tired, the weather was fine, and I don’t think I was distracted.  But, it doesn’t take much to catch a toe on one of the hundreds of thousands of steps tromping through forest trails and I did just that.

Maybe half-way into our run and a couple of miles from our cars, I took a breath and assessed the damage.  Deep cut on left forearm, with at least one small stick protruding from the skin, one very scraped knee, assorted areas that would surely bruise, and a left hand pinkie at a distractingly unnatural position.  No crying, no whining, but I was a bit concerned.  It wasn’t like I was going to be airlifted off the hillside for some scrapes and a busted pinkie.  So, I “zipped up my man-suit” and with Rob’s encouragement, we started running back towards our cars.  We covered the couple of miles pretty quickly and without too much pain, and we were thoughtfully granted right-of-way when crossing of Highway 360 on foot – blood covered and a bit mangled.

It took some stitches and some “readjusting” of my finger to get me back on my way.  I asked the ER doc if I could still finish out my run for the day, she couldn’t come up with a good reason not to, and I headed back home to get my final 5 or so miles.  On the treadmill, since I’m no dummy.

My self-portraits from the emergency room fall short of gallery-quality but here are a few snapshots (mad at myself I didn’t get one of the pinkie which, as of June 2, 2011, looks only 37% unnatural):




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