Monday, February 05, 2007

Ottawa report

I'll try to keep this short but it might be hard as there is so much to fit in and not enough time. As you can see I made it to Ottawa and found the canal nicely frozen for winter fun.

The trip up was eventful and with a lucky last minute flight change I got an upgrade and 1st class service on the flight up. My treatment by Air Canada was exceptional and very different from the poor service that Phil got a few weeks ago. The short story was that I arrived early, well fed and raring to go for a run around the city before the meetings began.

So quickly out the door of the downtown hotel I was soon on one of the many running trails in Ottawa. This one goes down the Rideau River past the parliament buildings and then down by the canal. I ran on the sidewalks for the most part doing the entire route while watching the skaters on the ice. I attempted to run along the ice for a short bit but found it was too slippery for even the Yaktraxs and quickly got back on the road. Ended up with a nice 12.5 miles on a perfect calm and almost mild day with temps around -5C.

That night, fantastic beer and meal at Pub Italia with my son. This restaurant has over 200 beers on it's menu, you get a beer list booklet and we sampled only a couple; Satans Killer Red from Kingdom of Fire (malty amber red beer) and an Erdinger Dunkel from Germany (very smooth dark wheat beer). And the food was good too!

Saturday - up early for another jaunt on the trails but this time I headed up the river searching out new unexplored territory. Due to some construction and blocked access I proceeded to get a little bit lost or should I say misdirected before finding my way as far as the Champlain bridge before turning back for the hotel. The hour plus run was very slow due to the snow packed and lightly traveled route that I took. Total for the week was 67 miles and more or less on track, just missed the tempo run.

Saturday night, Saturday night, Saturday night at the hockey game with the Ottawa Senators and the Toronto Maple Leafs !!!! We were so lucky to get tickets and the game was unbelievable. Sold out 20,000+, almost as many Toronto fans as Ottawa and an exciting 2-2 game which went to overtime and a shootout! To bad the home team lost but we got our moneys worth, WoW!

Sunday morning - blown long run but instead we were up early and on the canal by 7am for some great pictures and uncrowded skating. Total of 8 miles return trip on the ice which was in great condition. The temp was cool around -15C but there was little wind and we were very well dressed. It didn't even hurt when I crashed one time when distracted by the view. Also spent some time at the ice sculptures which were very impressive.

I flew home later that day but this time had to endure the coach class with little or no elbow room. Thankfully I wasn't between large bodies and the trip was only about an hour. But the streak of 20 milers has finally come to an end with no obvious way to fit one in before the weekend.

I'm now in Dartmouth, NS for an emergency work meeting and my running will be catch as catch can for the next few days. I was only told about it when arriving at work this morning and basically just repacked my bag and headed out once again. Took only enough time to put in a quick 5 miles on the treadmill before hitting the road once again.

Have a good week out there! I hope to get caught up soon!!


Michael said...

Very jealous to learn about the skating, we should’ve waited until February. Glad to hear you managed to get out for a run. If you’re ever looking for a late spring marathon, I can recommend Ottawa, it is well put on.

Thomas said...

Erdinger Dunkel - I'm getting flashbacks to my student times now (hazy flashbacks, I have to say).

That's one nice photo. Make sure unimportant things like work meetings don't interfere too much with your running.

Jamie Anderson said...

Sounds like a great trip! I've got to start exploring Canada.

Bummer about the 20-mile streak coming to an end. You've had a great run at it though (bad pun intended).

UMaine Cooperative Extension said...

Wonderful picture of skaters on the canal.

Nic ethat you were able to get in some running with al you had going on.

Andrew and I are very curious about this 'view' that distracted you...

Love2Run said...

The cold weather is great for making good ice. I was looking at buildings on the side of the canal, hit a crack in the ice and next thing was flat out. Come on, it's 20 below!

Downhillnut said...

Beautiful picture. I've always wanted to go skate on that canal. Someday! It would be a lovely place to run, too.

Olga said...

Very nice trip!