Springfield, Jasper, and Lowell, Oregon

1 marathon down, 134 marathons to go

Yesterday, I had two back-to-back interviews for segments on the three local TV affiliates. I wasn’t nervous at all during the interviews. To me, it’s a conversation, and there happens to be a camera present. Nervousness came at the time the segments were on. See, I hate being on that side of the camera. I almost didn’t watch at all, but I was curious. How would a 60-minute interview get packaged to 1:30, and how would a 30-minute interview get packaged to a 1-minute segment? So, I did watch, and I almost vomited before the news was on, but I obviously survived.

I get up this morning, check out of Motel 6, hop the first EmX of the morning, hop on the 11 bus route, and go to my storage unit. Get the running trailer out of storage, and then go the three blocks down the street to my starting point at 42nd and Main in Springfield, Oregon.

A cameraman from KMTR, the local NBC affiliate, is here to see me off. The Morning Show reshows last night’s segment on me, and then they switch to the cameraman to show me starting off. My friend, Tom, has come down to see me off, and two people I don’t know have come out because they had seen me on TV and wanted to support my launch.  This is great!  With that, I’m off on this adventure.

Jasper, Oregon
Made it to Jasper

The first town outside of Springfield is Jasper. Jasper is a small town along the Willamette River, and it takes no time to run through it.

Light Bearers
Light Bearers

Light Bearers is a business just east of Jasper. Every time I pass this business, I wonder if they know what their name means when translated to Latin. Just in case Latin isn’t your specialty: Light Bearer, in Latin, is Lucifer.

Slightly east of here is where my first problem occurrs. I’m running along when I hear that whump, whump, whump sound. Yep, I punctured the left tire on the running trailer. It’s a slow leak so I just have to keep pumping up the tire every half-mile to two miles until I get to Les Schwab tomorrow in Oakridge. I’m only a few miles into this adventure, and I have a flat tire. I have a tire pump with me, but I don’t have a repair kit with me. Hopefully, I’ll make it to Oakridge like this.

Between the tire and the weather, I spend a lot of time stopping. It rains on-and-off so I constantly put my hood up, take my hood down, remove my rain jacket, put my rain jacket on, pump the tire, repeat ad nauseum. Not a great start, but I’m not trying to set any time records. As long as I somehow make 26.2 miles, that’s all that counts.

Lowell, Oregon
Made it to Lowell

Next up is Lowell, and it’s time for a lunch break.

Lunch stop in Lowell, Oregon
This is where I stopped for lunch
Almost to Hwy 58 outside of Lowell, Oregon
Almost to Hwy 58 outside of Lowell

I’m almost to Hwy 58, which I’ll be on for the next few days.

Hwy 58
I’m now closer to Oakridge than I am to Eugene

I’ve made it to Hwy 58, and I’m now closer to Oakridge than I am to Eugene. Woohoo!

Entering the Willamette National Forest
Entering the Willamette National Forest

I’ve made it to the Willamette National Forest, I’m still pumping up that tire, and I’m still adjusting the jacket constantly, but I’m still going.

While running down the highway, a state patrolman drives slowly past me, and I wave at him. No big deal, some people slow down as they pass me. Understand that Hwy 58 is probably the most unsafe highway I’ll run on in the whole trip. In some places, shoulders are extremely narrow, but I’m always over as far as possible facing traffic. I realize the slowing down state patrolman is actually stopping behind me so I stop. He asks me where I’m heading, and I laugh, and then tell him my story. Turns out he had seen me on TV. Suddenly, he says, “You’re the marathon-a-day guy!” Yep, that’s me, and my superhero name is now Marathon-a-Day Guy! They had received a call complaining about me, but the patrolman agrees there is nothing wrong with what I am doing. He thanks me for what I’m doing, shakes my hand, and I’m back off and running.

Lawler Trail Trailhead
The Lawler Trail trailhead was my stopping point

I’ve made it to the end point of today’s run. Marathon 1 is done. Not a great place to stay around here so I end up staying somewhere with my tent and rain fly wrapped around my tent somewhere that the rain is hitting me much, and since I’m surrounded by my tent and rain fly, I should be dry all night. I’ll let you know tomorrow how this turns out.

How am I feeling? My knees are sore, and my right ankle is sore, but mainly I’m exhausted. When I first arrive at the end point, I am literally falling asleep standing up. I keep catching myself falling asleep just before I face-plant.

Good night, all.