Wednesday, January 16, 2008

So, despite having heard of the coyotes that roam through West Seattle for the past year or so now I've never been all that concerned until recently. About a week ago or so I was running through Lincoln Park around 9/9:30ish pm, when I (may have) heard some growling come from the woods, this could have very well been the echo of my feet running over the gravel trail but it also might not have been. The first stretch of my route around Lincoln, heading south and then west, is relatively well lit, but once I wrap around Coleman Pool and start heading north I'm engulfed in darkness pretty quickly, I have very limited sight and in no way am able to see into the woods directly to my right. Quite frequently I am able to enjoy this darkness, it provides an excellent opportunity to look out across the sound, see the stars on clear nights, and bask in the solitude (all with in the confines of Seattle city limits non the less!), but since hearing and/or imagining none too happy coyotes at my side I've lost my care-free attitude while running through the park at night.

That brings me to last night, in which my paranoia (or perhaps common sense) finally got the better of me.

As I headed out last night, intending to run (at least) my 6 mile route, it occurred to me that I didn't feel like looking over my shoulder for a good half mile of my run. I decided that I would basically run the same route but just cut out the park portion, and in order to make up the distance, I would just take a different hill, further down the road, back up to my home. This all seemed well and fine until I finished up and realized I had cut my run short by almost a full mile. Sadly, by the time I was finishing up it was already 11:30pm, to tack on more miles just didn't seem logical knowing I'd have to be out of bed getting ready for work in 6 1/2 hours, so I called it a night, headed in, and got ready for bed.

Now, just to be clear, I'm not really all that concerned about coyote attacks, I understand it's very rare indeed for a coyote to attack a human, but, having said that, I don't feel like ending up as one of those rare statistics on a dark trail, at 11pm, with no phone. I know I could very well bring my phone with me when I run and I could wear my head lamp, but, to be honest, I just don't feel like doing either. Besides, what's a head lamp going to do for me, show me where the pissed off coyote is coming from? I doubt that would be my concern as I'm about to be attacked.
So, I guess this all adds up to me either waiting until the days get longer or I start running earlier. Until or unless one of those options happen, I'll more than likely be avoiding Lincoln Park while logging my miles... stupid coyotes...

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