Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Wonderland, Marmot Lake, Surprise Mountain, and St. Helens Circumnavigation Weekend

Total: 25:55 hours, 107 miles, 19,295 ascent, and a Devil's Club straight to the crotch.

Monday was a slow recover nine. Tuesday was an easy pace nine in Pt. Defiance w/Matt. Wednesday was a two-a-day, with eight in the am and ten in the p.m.

Wonderland Trail Shakeout Run & Trail Work
I took a vacation day from work on Friday to complete my trail-work requirement for Cascade Crest. I got to camp for free in the Longmire area of Rainier on Thursday, and trail-work started early Friday morning. A group of six of us did some berm removal and put in water-bars. I managed a short six miles on the trail following the work, and can now say I've run some of Wonderland.

Marmot Lake and Surprise Mountain Run
Saturday was an epic run with Luke and Greg in the Cascades. Pictures tell more of the story, so those will be below. Pretty much a 55K with more than 7,000 ft of gain. Luke and Greg are great guys. They know these epic places and they are okay with me sometimes holding them back a bit. I'm really excited to see how they perform at their respective 'focus' races coming up. Greg is running the incredibly difficult Wasatch 100 in early September, and Luke is tackling his first 50 mile at White River in two weeks!

Luke's blog entry is well worth the read, give it a read by clicking here.

Mount St. Helens Circumnavigation
Got home in the late evening Saturday, took a ice bath, and then was up early Sunday to meet Paul at the June Lake trailhead on Sunday.

Again, pictures tell more of the story. It was hot, exposed, and extremely technical terrain. It took us about 9:20 for about 32 miles and 6,500 ft of gain. Paul was great company, and is running his second 50 mile at White River in two weeks.

Pictures below, awesomeness achieved.

Supplemental Reading
Here are two pieces I thoroughly enjoyed reading this week.


Wonderland Trail

Do work.

My water bar.

No hands.

Marmot Lake

Gonna kill it at White River

Gonna kill it at Wasatch

View from Surprise Mountain


St. Helens, with Paul rock hopping early on

Adams (?) in the background. Clear views of Rainier and Hood all day.

SO many different landscapes and ecosystems as you run around St. Helens

Blast zone

Technical climbs litter the course

Mt Adams.

Ready to tackle White River

Monday, July 8, 2013

Training Review: June 24th - July 7th

June 24th - June 30th
My intent was for a 100 mile week. I wanted to put 40 miles on during the week, and then 60 on over the weekend. I had a long run planned with Luke, Richard, and Greg for Saturday. I then had my trail work planned for Sunday, and wanted to run 20 miles immediately following that.

I ended up running 40 miles during the week, with a rest day on Tuesday. Most miles were moderately easy, varied trails, encompassing Dash Point State Park. Saturday was an epic 43 mile run in the North Cascades that took more than 12 hours and had 10,000+ ft in gain. I got back home at 1:30 a.m. on Sunday, walked straight to my bed, and passed out. My 6:30 a.m. alarm was silenced due to extreme fatigue, trail work was wimped out on, and I went back to bed and didn't run that day. 

I tend to not always re-start my watch when I pause it, so there are probably a couple of miles missing below. All said and done, a week I can still be happy about

Total: 18:30 hours, 80.74 miles, 15,138 ascent

July 1st - July 7th
Again, intent was for a 100 mile week. With 4th of July being a long four-day weekend, I thought it was very likely I could get the mileage in. I planned to have back-to-back 50K's on Whidbey Island on Thursday and Friday, and then a 50K comprising portions of the Cascade Crest course on Sunday.

Tuesday I got to run with my friend Matt in Pt. Defiance. Matt is self-described 'back of the packer', so outside of the fact he makes for good company, he allows me to get my 'easy' miles in. He tends to hold a very consistent pace, and I'm actually really interested to see how he fares at White River.

Thursday was a 21 mile, four hour run around Deception Pass State Park. Tourists were out in droves, but that keeps the trails interesting, and the weather was nothing but sun and heat. I went around much of the Deception Pass course, and managed to grab an ice cold Pepsi from a vendor near Cranberry Lake. After running 15 miles in the sun, I can assure you nothing tastes better.

Friday was a 27 mile, 5 hour run around Ft. Ebey and the surrounding trial system. The highlight of this run was meeting a fellow ultrarunner. As I came around a bend early on in my run, a state park employee was passing driving a cart nearby and stopped to say hello. He asked me about my Gorge Waterfalls 50K shirt, and then started talking about ultras. Come to find out, I happen to be talking with 71 year old ultrarunner and Ultrarunning Magazine columnist John Morelock. We spend about an hour chatting about running and life. I then saw him at the end of my run, and we exchanged contact information. I parked my car down by the beach (picture below), and decided to ice my legs in the ocean immediately following the run (the perks of sea-level running).

Saturday I spent in Sunland, Washington. My friend has a cabin there, and we played games and ate and drank and watched the most awesome fireworks show. I also had a snooze in the sun, sans sunscreen. My chest is now quite red. 

Sunday my running partner ended up not being able to make our planned run on parts of the Cascade Crest course. I improvised by doing three ascents of Mt. Si. I got lots of 'what are you training for', and 'how many times are you doing this', and 'you're crazy' comments. I got a bunch of kids to run down some descents because I told them its more fun that way and they then told me I 'inspired' them. Pretty cool way to end the week.

Missed the mark again, somewhat due to time management. I did do plenty of sleeping though, and I figure if I'm going to miss my goals, it better be due to spending time sleeping/eating/with friends and family.

Total: 17:53 hours, 87.37 miles, 16,371 ascent

Ebey's Landing
Deception Pass Bridge

Monday, July 1, 2013

Devil's Dome-Jackita Ridge Loop

Luke, Richard and I decided to do this loop on Saturday. It was epic.

After I picked up Richard in Seattle, we drove up to the East Bank trail-head Friday night to camp out. We met Luke the next morning and got on the trail (GregH also joined us for the first 8 miles).

Lots of blowdowns and overgrowth at the latter portion of the loop, and significant snow on portions of Jackita Ridge, made for a slower run then we initially expected. It took us more than 12 hours to get it all done.

Luke put together a great blog post and WTA report:
Luke's WTA Trip Report
Luke's Blog Post

Richard's running across Iowa in July to raise money for veterans, you should check it out:

Pictures for your enjoyment.

Mile 4ishRichard flying across. Potential death involved if you slip and fall.

Mile 35ish. Cool stream along the rollers along Ross lake.

Mile 10ish. Young buck up ahead of Luke.

Mile 15ish. Flowers.

Mile 25ish. Top of Devils Dome.

Mile 18ish. Jackita Ridge.

Mile 18ish, looking off from Jackita Ridge.

Mile 24ish. Jack Mountain in the background.

Mile 20ish, a view from where we bushwhacked up to find a trail.

Devils Dome

Mile 25ish, after Devils Dome. Luke playing. The fall on the right is my slide.

Mile 28ish, filling up at a stream. Water sources were plentiful.

Greg crossing and not falling.