Seems like I say it every year: this is the worst year for horseflies here in the Jefferson Memorial Forest. I went running this morning & despite being soaked in deet, I was bit 4 times. And they weren't the usual size horseflies of years past -- these were real small ones, 1/2" or less in size (the ones that you can hardly feel land on you & find out too late). The big ones of the previous 2 years were so thick around here that at one time they would literally cover my car & house -- I would go out & swat them till I got tired of it & saw that there was no end in sight. But not this year. Another thing different this year is that the horsefly season started late due to a cool early summer -- they really didn't come out till July this year (but made up for lost time). And, strangely, about a month ago, there was a mass die off for some reason. I must have had 200 dead horseflies on my deck in a 40 square foot area. I did put up a new clear glass fence/railing around the deck this year, but usually horseflies bounce off glass & keep going, so it makes me wonder.
This is a pic I took today of one of the big flies that will bug you here . . . it looks like a cross between a horsefly & a dragonfly, or perhaps it's just a 2 wing dragonfly. They're over an inch long & as noisy as the big horseflies. I've never been bit by one or know whether it even bites -- I just don't let it stay lit on me long enough to find out:
About my run: I had not run for a few days because of my gut, but feeling better this morning, I went out & tried to do a 4 hour run. It was not an enjoyable time as I have had recently. The 60's the last couple of weeks must have spoiled me. I started my run before sunrise, temp about 70 & dewpoint in the low to mid 60's (this would have been super last month). Anyway, I felt very hot & my shorts were soaked after 1 mile. I got thirsty as I had misjudged my fluid needs & had not carried & stashed enough drinks. The horseflies were driving me crazy. What I should have covered in 4 hrs, took about 5, all consisting of very slow running & walking. My fluids: 20 oz right at the start, 80 oz during the run/walk and 60+ oz right after I finished. Even after drinking the half gallon immediately after the run, I was still at a deficit: I weighed 5 1/2 pounds less than when I started!
I was so optimistic in my last post saying I wanted to run 2 ultras next month . . . . I'm having 2nd thoughts now. Even though I would have to stay at a motel the night before these 2 races, it would still have to be a race morning decision whether I can start or not.