You Never Know What to Expect

When I head out the door to add more mileage for my 2 virtual races, Across Canada For Amanda and the 1000 kilometer Great Virtual Run Across Tennessee, I never know what to expect. Definitely unexpected, when it involves a friendly dog that refuses to go back home, a dirt bike rider and the Monarch Ultra. My highest mileage today of 25.34 kilometers since registering for these 2 virtual runs.

For accountability and transparency I do a daily update on my Facebook running page, which tracks my progress. With this 1000k distance I am hiking much more than running. Though each days outing, there is some running.

After an excellent time on the trails I was working my way back to Hillsdale when a friendly dog joined me at a dead end of one of the few stretches of road I was on. It has joined me previous runs but always turns back home not long after I go on the forest trails. Not today. It kept running with me. After over a kilometer later, I worked my way back over to the main trail, a road allowance which leads back to the dog’s home.  Once back on that main trail, maybe it would decide to run back home. No luck. I sit on a downed tree for a good 15 minutes, but the dog stayed close by. I stood up and started on my way again. Struggling what to do, I made an effort to ignore the dog and headed for home. Maybe the dog would then decide to head back to it’s own home on it’s own.

A very friendly German Shephard comes and joins me on my run.

Just then a dirt bike comes along. The driver sees me and sees the dog and he turns off his bike and starts to walk it, not wanting to scare the dog. We get talking, and I told the biker the dog is not mine. It belongs to the house at the dead end. And I was trying to get the dog to go home.

A dirt biker, whose names ends up being Mike comes along.

I said I was an ultrarunner, and the extra mileage to get the dog home is no big deal. In fact, it would help me in this 1000 kilometer virtual run. He said he was an ultrarunner as well, and not only did he know about the #GVRAT1000k, he knew way more details about the race and on the 4 finishers so far than I ever did. He has been following the event very closely. It turns out that this gentleman named Mike has run in several of the ultras I have. And has run in several Ultras in Ontario that I have never run.

A picture on my run. May 15 as part of the Great Virtual Run Across Tennessee.


Another picture on my run.

I told Mike my name. And he excitedly said, “So you’re that crazy runner from Hillsdale. I have heard so much about you. You were in that butterfly run“. I eventually ended up running the dog back to it’s home. And what was planned to be a 21k distance ended up being over 25k. And I’ll be watching for my new runner friend Mike at the start line of another ultra here in Ontario. Once things get back to normal again!

There was intermittent showers out on the trail, which made everything so beautiful.


The headwaters of the Sturgeon River, a couple of kilometers from my home.

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  1. Small world. How cool as well. I have several friends doing the Great Virtual Run Across Tennessee. I wish I would have registered – but I knew I wasn’t up to the distance. Good luck. Post often about the run and how you’re doing.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Such a small world. What are the chances of running into a fellow ultramarathoner and one who knew you!
    As to the canine fan squad the pup obviously knows a good guy when he sees one.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Small world….what a great story!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Hello.

    Nice post. Thank you. During Coronavirus time, we have made only short walks in our neighboring areas. Surprisingly, these walks have offered something new to us. 🙂

    Have a good day!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. That’s awesome what a pretty dog. Nice scenic pictures.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. This sounded like a great unexpected kind of run for you, and yes, you never know what to expect. I don wonder why the dog tailed you for longer than usual that day. Perhaps it was bored, or maybe it wanted to stretch its legs a bit more than usual or missed a walk that day.

    Also sounds like you are quite famous up there with the other runners. Or as Susan said, it’s a small world and very cool. It was also very nice of Mike to pose for a photo. Maybe the two of you will run into each other again either on the dirt trail or as you mentioned, see him at the start line of another race. Good luck.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. It’s a small world for sure! Maybe the dog was trying to tell you something! Maybe he just wanted company for his walks if his owner’s don’t walk him and let him be free. Or maybe he wants a new human!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Great photos! Thanks for sharing. I really enjoyed reading this.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Imagine that, meeting a runner with a passion similar to yours.
    Im no runner, a walker for sure.
    Im very impressed though when I see runners!

    Liked by 1 person

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