"Perhaps the genius of ultrarunning is its supreme lack of utility. It makes no sense in a world of space ships and supercomputers to run vast distances on foot. There is no money in it and no fame, frequently not even the approval of peers. But as poets, apostles and philosophers have insisted from the dawn of time, there is more to life than logic and common sense."
- David Blaikie

Friday, July 17, 2009

HARDROCK 100 2009

Just a quick post to say I finished Hardrock! My goal was 35hrs and I came in with 20mins to spare in 22nd place. I'm still babbling to myself but the fits of crying and laughing are coming less frequently. In a week or so I may even be able to post a report. For now, here are 3 videos (the only ones) that I took on race day. Enjoy!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

The Grit Bit

The grit bit is an internal binary system that can be toggled on and off under the right circumstances, sometimes intentionally, but more often in reaction to some external stress. When the grit bit is off we are driven to seek comfort, familiarity, and ice cream. With the Grit Bit on we are able to lift cars off little children, saw off our own limbs, and listen to the Diane Rehm show in its entirety. To turn the Grit Bit on intentionally is of varying difficulty, depending entirely on individual differences. As a rule, the more intelligent the person, the more difficult it is to simply flip the Grit Bit on at will.

At 0600 MTN time tomorrow the grit bit will be flipped.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Gold Hill 12,725

I took a short hike up 2,250 to Gold Hill above Mountain Village today. Spectacular views of the Telluride Bear Creak up to Oscar's Pass portion of the Hardrock course. I took a lunch and lounged around at altitude for a while. Captured a 360 degree video...

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Kamm Traverse to the Nute Chute on the Hardrock Course

I met up with fellow Hardrocker Bob Combs around the Mineral Creek crossing yesterday and after continuing together about a mile in the reverse course direction we decided we should run point to point from KT Aid Station back to Mineral Creek crossing, mile 89.0 to 98.5 of the '09 Hardrock Course. So, that's what we did...

I took a lot of video on this section and really tried to study the lay of the land on the advice of Hardrock veterans Jim Ballard, Scott Brockmeyer and Geoff Scott. I found the trail to be well marked, but if you hit this at night and have the misfortune of having marmots or elk take out a marker or two, this could be tough. There are numerous cross-country sections where you either have to know the general direction you are going or hop marker to marker.

Here are some of my favorite videos from the day...

And links to many more videos of this section for those studying up!

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Bear Creek Trail Work Party on the Hardrock Course

Had a great time yesterday meeting folks and working on the famous Bear Creek Trail above Ouray at about the middle of the Hardrock Course. It seems every day I say "This is my favorite part of the course!". I really hope I can get here with enough light left to run parts of this section.

Some video from the day:

This is just majestic...

Geoff "Ringo" Scott (HRH '05 Finisher) showing me where not to step on the Bear Creek trail!

Joe Prusaitis almost scares me over the edge here...

Our trail work party led by Rick Trujillo. Here are Geoff "Ringo" Scott, Julian Jamison and 08 HRH finisher John finishing up some "cribbing"...

... and some links to more videos for those who want to see more of this section:

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Ophir Pass Rd to Oscar's Pass on the Hardrock Course

I made a quick trip up to Oscar's Pass from Ophir Pass Rd (reverse direction) today with Hardrock '05 veteran Geoff "Ringo" Scott. The trip up was uneventful, switching back and forth on a steep old jeep road 2.5 miles, 2500ish feet.

When we neared the top a few thunderstorms moved into the area. The first one passed off to the West but dropped the temperature considerably. Once on top we enjoyed the view of Bridal Veil Basin and crossed over to the Wasatch Saddle where we could look down on the Telluride Bear Creak. At this point another Thunderstorm came up from the South and started pelting us with very cold (near ice) rain. I was happy to switch into my rain gear, having learned my lesson on preparedness many times over during the past couple weeks.

Course markings were pretty good even in the reverse direction and someone even cut steps in the snow toward the top of Oscar's Pass and in Bridal Veil Basin. Those were awesome! I'm hoping steps will show up in Grant-Swamp Pass too. Thanks Trail Fairies!

Some video from today:

Wednesday, July 1, 2009