This dream has been viewed 949 times.I am in a cleared area next to a trailhead in a relatively flat, heavily forested area that has an enormous granite peak rising from its center that can be seen from miles away. Accompanying me is a friend J, and we are part of a large group preparing to run a kind of race on this trail, which goes over the mountain and to a parking area on the other side. I feel ill-prepared for such a strenuous endurance event, since I've been doing a lot of strength training lately (true IRL) and feel too "big" to be running up steep mountain trails, and so I tell J. not to wait for me if I fall behind. But he seems to think I will be way ahead of him, and I figure that might be right, since I have continued to do 15 mile cross country runs on the weekends and at least a couple of shorter runs during the week. Everyone draws near the trailhead and when an official gives the signal we are off.
I feel surprisingly good and fly over the flat part of the path, and start going up the steep trail that winds up the mountain. It's evident that I'm not in optimal shape for a race like this, but it's not nearly as bad as I thought. Even after getting to the winding switchbacks near the summit, I am still holding a solid pace, and I see the others have fallen about a 1/4 mile behind, with J at the front of the pack. When I reach the summit, I recall that there’s a cool "shortcut" that involves traversing the northern edge of the summit with some exposed bouldering and I decide to try it. I wait for J to get to the summit, and show him the shortcut, but he thinks I’m insane and says he will run on the trail over the summit. So we each go our own way, with me doing a technical traverse along the lip of this roof that has a wall above it that rises all the way up to the summit. It’s a lot slower than I think it will be, probably because I haven't been climbing in a while and am wearing running shoes, but I make it safely back to the trail after some close calls, and again wait for J (isn't this supposed to be a race?) He arrives after a minute or so, and for some reason we then wait for everyone else to summit before descending
Again taking the lead, I get about a mile below the summit, when I go through some tight spaces with walls of rock lining the sides of the trail, and after exiting one of these, I find myself on the edge of a cliff. The trail seems to have disappered! Looking more carefully, I see that an enormous wall of rock has fallen and there is now a cliff with talus below where the trail used to be. But it isn't as bad as it looks at first, and I soon find myself walking quickly and then running once I get past the steepest part. When I look behind me, I see the others standing on the edge of the cliff, and yell "it's okay, it isn't as bad as it looks." They follow tentatively, and I make it down to the parking area well ahead of everyone else.
After this, I wake up momentarily, realize it's too early to get up on a Saturday, decide I'll just sleep in a little bit and then get up and write down dreams. But I don't wake up. Instead, I find myself with the same group, and it seems that the race has continued, but now we are in the urban component-- in a mall. At first it's fun, kind of like a race/scavenger hunt, but then the task we have to do next is get a haircut, and there are long lines at all of the hair places in the mall. It looks like the wait will be hours, and I say screw this, and join up with a group of friends (only J is familiar from real life). We talk and walk around the mall, and then the others start singing a song I've never heard that they say is from Peter Gabriel (whose music I'm not all that familiar with IRL), but the vocals are almost like Robert Plant or something, and I say "are you sure it's Peter Gabriel?" They look at me like "What year is it where you're from dude," which silences me. Temporarily. But I get bored, and at a place in the song where it somehow fits in, I sing a little snippet from "I feel good" (why would I sing that?) This causes everyone to try to get me to learn the Gabriel song. As we go from this mall scene to another dreamscape, J sings/says something that's supposed to explain what this is all supposed to mean, but I don't remember what he says.
Now, entering another dreamscape, I find myself alone in a real wilderness, surrounded by millions of acres of pine forest. As in the earlier scene, there is a huge mountain peak rising from the forest floor, but this one is on an altogether different scale. I'm in a paved parking lot next to a log cabin kind of building, and there are two other cars in the lot. Even though it's late May, there's ice all over the road from the cold night in the mountains. I run up the mountain to the top of a rock formation that towers over the trees, and the view is awesome, with forest and mountains in every direction as far as the eye can see. It kind of overwhelms me. Then I realize I'm wearing my work shoes, which are comfortable and waterproof, but not intended for what I figure will be a fifty mile run/hike. I really need my running shoes, which I left in the car. But it’s several miles back to the car, and I think it would be better to keep going since I feel really good, but I figure I can take a short break and check out the building, and end up going back to the car. When I get back, the lot is full, and the ice has melted. I grab my shoes out of the trunk, and talk to some people in the lot, who are as happy as I am to be in this wonderful wilderness area. An older woman on the other side of the lot starts singing, and as in the mall I don’t know the song, but it has a good tune so I make up harmony parts and sing along. It’s fun, and sounds pretty cool. After talking to the woman and her husband, I feel rested, and start running up the mountain again.
Additional Comments:This one seems to involve things from real life. My friend J and I are planning on doing a hike up Old Rag mountain and the nearby White Oak canyon to Hawksbill once I get caught up on planting the garden this year. Old Rag is rather unusual for the Southeast in that it is a granite formation that rises above the surrounding forest in isolation from the main part of the Blue ridge range, which contains no other granite formations like this. There are some excellent multi-pitch climbs, as well as good bouldering at Old Rag, incidentally.
The other thing the dream connected with wasn't very significant, just a planned run today through a local park. The dream indicated that it would have been better to get up early and go running (the first time up the mountain with my work shoes), but I ended up doing what I did in the dream, which worked out okay, but wasn't optimal.