About NATRA Blog

This page is meant for folks to post their thoughts on the Saturday group run. I (Neil) will post a blurb about who showed up and where it was held. From there, I hope that other runners will share their thoughts since we often have different experiences on the same run. Enjoy!

Saturday, May 2, 2015

A Tale of Two Runs

 Two Flagstaff runs located minutes apart could not have contrasted any more! While the low key Campbell Mesa NATRA run started at 8 AM with its 11 devotees, nearly 3000 runners and volunteers packed the Color Vibe run at Findlay Toyota.

This is the second year Color Vibe has handed out the Flagstaff Racing Event Calendar (to download visit http://www.natra.org and view latest news link) to their participants and they again allowed me to plug our local races on stage. This time the DJ fired up the already raucous crowd by having them chant my name and then having the endless sea of runners dance for my panoramic photo.

As my friend Merk Perelstein pointed out, Color Vibe is perhaps one of the best gateway drugs that running has ever seen. It gets non-runners to participate and hopefully we will see a few of them at our local benefit runs! Much thanks to race director Nate Sorenson for his support of our local events.

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Seeing the Forest Though the Trees

9 NATRA runners and 2 pooches thought they had been transported to the northwest coast. The bone chilling spring drizzle made the rocky Sycamore Rim Trail that much more challenging. Once we regrouped at the Sycamore Vista overlook, we decided to make the loop following Forest Road 56. We ran through a very recent forest thinning project that had given the forest a new haircut that will make it far more resilient against destructive wildfires. The animals seemed to approve as the deer and antelope played in the new openings.....Once back at the trailhead, runners filled their bottles with Dow Springs water and we satisfied our coffee drinking addiction at Wildflower. Next week Campbell Mesa 8 AM sharp!

 Natraneil, Natradavid, and Natraoso

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Getting Ash Kicked on Route 66

10 NATRA runners and two pooches ran west on the 1931 Abandoned Route 66 alignment on Ash Fork Hill and returned uphill via the 1922 Old Trails Highway. (The Kaibab National Forest listed this section on the National Register of Historic Places in 1989 - http://www.nps.gov/nr/travel/route66/arizona_road_segments.html)

As often as we have often done this adventure run, I was amazed that 8 of the 10 runners had never done so! As we trudged up the dirt road parallelling I-40, we may have been faster than the uphill semis. We wondered what the truckers thought as our group ran next to them in the woods.

To learn more about Route 66 history, visit http://flagstafftrailrunning.blogspot.com/2012/03/getting-our-butts-kicked-on-route-66.html

With 6 miles of the Mother Road in our pocket, we returned to Williams where we packed good old Cafe 326. I'm pretty sure due to the tiring hot run, everyone had Iced Coffee.

See David Blanchard's photos from 2012 for more info - http://www.dblanchard.net/blog/2012/03/get-your-running-kicks-on-route-66/ and read http://azdailysun.com/sports/running/get-your-butt-kicked-on-route/article_eeb6ae15-989b-51bf-9a0f-eae80dcc5834.html

Saturday, April 11, 2015

From New York to Sandy Canyon via AZ Trail

17 NATRA runners including a half dozen newbies and three recent arrivals from NY area, ran to Fisher Point and back. The smell of spring prescribed burning off Lake Mary road and the warm temps were a nice addition to the perfect conditions. The large group then replenished oxygen and energy levels at Wildflower.

Next week join us and get your kicks on Old Route 66 west of Williams, Arizona. We will run the original dirt "Old Trails HIghway" and 1931 paved alignments. Learn more about the history of next week's run at http://flagstafftrailrunning.blogspot.com/2012/03/getting-our-butts-kicked-on-route-66.html We will meet at the Flagstaff Athletic Club west overflow Parking at 7:15 AM to carpool.

And don't forget, prices go up for the Run Flagstaff Summer Series 6 pack on April 16th. Register today for the 6 races at https://register.chronotrack.com/reg/form?eventID=12032

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Johnson Canyon Tunnel Run

Six NATRA runners ran back in time to the historic 1882 Atlantic and Pacific Johnson Canyon Tunnel. Abandoned in 1960, the tunnel is a monument to one of the most troublesome sections of railroad grade on the mainline between New Mexcio and California. We made a pit stop at Cafe 326 in Williams and pretty much replenished the calories lost with tasty pastries. Next week, Sandy Canyon to Fisher Point from Canyon Vista Campground at 8 AM.

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Hangover Part One

Twenty NATRA runners took on the hills of the Hangover trail this morning. As the heat was rising towards record highs, the photographer knew better than to run himself into the ground with his final Keyhole Sink tour at 2 PM. Instead, he took a few shots and decided to leave Hangover Part II for participants to comment on their adventures on the red rocks.

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Spring Has Sprung Trail Run

As we were nearly a full day past the vernal equinox, and seemingly far removed from this winter when we renamed the trail refrigerator gulch, spring certainly seemed to have sprung in Flagstaff. Nine NATRA runners enjoyed a mild, relatively mud, and UFO free run ranging from 5.5 to 8.5 miles on the Flagstaff Loop Trail and extra variations. Some cut their run short in favor of drinking extra coffee at the Kickstand.