Sunday, April 26, 2015

Why I love Turkey Mountain

This is my 1000th post on ....miles to go before I sleep....
I write a lot of posts about Turkey Mountain. Anyone who follows this blog does so for reading trail race reports, or for reading up on what's going on with the proposed mall development, or for just seeing pictures and commentary of what I find in Tulsa's magical wilderness area.

I have been running here since 2002, and moved here (literally) in 2008. I can run right out my front door and be on the trailz in three minutes. For the past few years, I have sworn off pavement, running around 90% of my miles on Turkey Mountain. Why do I love Turkey? For a thousand reasons.

Turkey Mountain is beautiful at sun-up on a cold February day with a group of friends going nowhere in particular, running a route of minor trailz trying to get lost--occasionally showing new trail runners a wilderness they never knew existed.

Or joining 150 other friends for a 3 or 6 hour Snake Run with no chance of getting lost. I am race director of three different trail races here on Turkey Mountain, and love the thrill of seeing people stretch themselves going distances they never dreamed they could do.

I like the greenness of summers, and views of valleys and ponds, home for beaver, deer, raccoons, coyote, squirrel, rabbits, armadillo, possum, a variety of snake (some friendly, and some to be avoided), and turkeys (Yes I have seen turkeys here) and mountain lion (Yes, I have seen them too as have a few of my friends.)

Turkey is beautiful in the snow. While most runners would write off a snowy day and opt for a treadmill for their run, lots of trail runners see days like this a rare privilege. The woods are clean and pristine on a snow day. And on most snow days, the trailz are well trodden.

My running buddy Jake vouches for the fantastic swimming holes on Turkey Mountain. My Jake-routes include a pond or creek every mile or so.

I mentioned winter, summer, spring, but the fall on Turkey Mountain my favorite. Colors explode on a cool crisp November morning. 

There are so many secret places that few people know. This view along Mooser Creek is off the beaten trail but is a short jaunt from Pepsi Bridge.

This pond is on the west side and is now full to the brim. It's a good place for a sunset, for some perch or bass fishing, or for a swim if you're a Labrador.

Just so you know, I'm not the only one obsessed with trail running on Turkey. You'll find characters like these on any given day.

And yes, I was here today, running with my wife and Jake. It was a slow day for me, and stopping to take what might seem to be a perfect \picture gives me a minute to catch my breath, and be at one with my playground.

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