The Gorge 100k is approaching this weekend and as always, I will be crewing for Justin. I felt the nervous energy settle in the house last night as planning commenced. Justin made a record of different snacks I have made since December, noting what has worked the best during his long runs. GU has made his stomach go sideways at different times, so I am always on the hunt for alternatives I can whip up before he heads for the hills. I have posted a few of those recipes here, mostly because the pictures turned out well (confessions of a blogger...). These cookies are one of a handful of recipes I planned for this weekend. Trust me, there will be no food shortage on Saturday.
This recipe isn't necessarily pack-able because of the jam; these cookies are more of a hand-off and eat immediately or leave at the car until post-run, both of which are important moments to refuel. This weekend they will likely all be consumed in the car before we arrive in Oregon.
Coconut Cookies with Goji Jam
3/4 cup coconut flour
1 cup quinoa flour
1 stick butter, softened
2 bananas, mashed
5 tbs coconut nectar
3/4 cup apple sauce
1 tsp vanilla
Combine dry ingredients in a bowl. Mash bananas and combine well with butter, apple sauce, coconut nectar and vanilla. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and combine. Spoon golf sized balls onto a lined baking sheet. Make an indent in each ball with your thumb; re-shape if needed. Bake at 350F for 20 minutes, or until golden brown. Once cooled, fill each indent with goji jam.
1/4 cup goji berries
6 oz strawberries
1 tsp arrowroot
1 tbs coconut nectar
1/4 tsp vanilla
Soak goji berries in hot water for 30 minutes. Discard water and blend all ingredients in a food processor until smooth. Keep refrigerated for up to one week.
I will be back after the weekend to talk about my experience crewing - which I am always trying to perfect! I hope to shed helpful information and share our sure to be wild experience at the Gorge.
Seattle has been having a spectacular winter with plenty of sun, however, I picked the perfect weekend to fly south. While I was in Red Rock soaking up rays, Justin was in the northwest running through a monsoon.
I planned this trip last minute when I got in touch with one of my best friends from college who had recently moved with her family to Las Vegas from the Midwest. We were far overdue for a visit, so I had no hesitation buying a ticket for a warm reunion in the desert.
Jackie and her sister picked me up from the airport on Friday and we B-lined it straight for Red Rock National Park. They had a slot canyon hike in mind, which was a good combination of shade and sun for this pale northwester! We stayed outside until the sun went down. This weekend was less about running and more about being outside and enjoying everything the Mojave had to offer.
Jackie and her husband had planned the whole weekend perfectly, filling every minute with adventure. The next morning we packed a cooler full of food and drove to Black Canyon, Arizona to canoe the lower Colorado River. For a Saturday it was surprisingly serene. There were plenty of small coves to pull up our canoe and wade in the water on our own private beach. I'd take river over ocean any day!
The weekend would not have been complete without a night on the strip. We stayed in a room at The Trump and spent the night walking through the Casinos, eating Italian food and drinking wine. We didn't do anything too crazy - after all, that wasn't really our style. We spent Sunday morning by the pool eating brunch and swimming. I got the last of my sun rays going for a run with Jackie at high noon, and it was almost nauseating how hot it was. I almost hacked up a lung from the dry desert heat. I'm glad we kept it short, because my skin was borderline fried.
I'm certain I'll be back before the end of the year for more desert adventures!
I will say it flat out: This trail is not run-able on the way up. However, it is perfect if you are looking for a grind to work on your power hiking, which is exactly what I did with two of my former college track teammates.
As of last fall, a new trail was blazed by Washington Trails Association to Mailbox Peak, which is more gradual and run-able than the old trail. This has attracted more traffic to the popular destination, but only on the new trail. The old trail didn't have a trace of humankind when we hiked up on a beautiful bluebird day that would have had flocks of people at Mt. Si.
The trail gains 4000 ft in less than 3 miles, which is shown on the above topography map. The last push to the top goes directly up an exposed boulder field. The view at the top was one of the best I've experienced yet in the North Bend area with a panoramic view of the cascades. It felt like summer as we snacked at the top, and as you can see from the picture below there was almost zero snow! Rare for late February in the Pacific Northwest.
We didn't think to look in the mailbox until right before heading down, but it was FULL of goodies. Everything from a vintage bottle of coca cola, a bag of weed, a visitors journal and much much more....
Mailbox Peak: Exit 34 from I-90
Distance: 9.4 miles
Elevation Gain: 4000 ft
I am an outdoor and travel junkie who is currently completing my doctorate in occupational therapy overseas in rural Fiji. On Sweet World Travels you will find stories of my life with my husband, the communities we serve, and the many adventures we take.