Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Please pinch me...

...was last Saturday really August 1st??

I went on my final training run down at Pikes. My plan was to drive up the auto road to the summit and complete a "3-2-1" run. In this run, you start at the top and run 3 miles down & up, 2 miles down & up, and then 1 mile down & up. The total run is 12 miles...all above 12K feet.

My plan was foiled when I got stopped 3 miles from the summit. They got a little snow on the peak overnight and the road had too much ice on it. They told me it would reopen in about 2 hours. Well, that wouldn't work, so I pulled into a parking area above treeline and found a different trail up.

I had a feeling it was going to be an interesting day when a sign at the bottom read, "Summit Temp = 28 Windchill = 18". Thankfully, I was prepared with a headband to cover my ears, gloves, and a warm fleece. The run up went well, but once it got more rocky, the trail was very difficult to follow. Fortunately, there was a hiker much further ahead that left me his footprints in the snow to follow.

When I caught up with the hiker, I found a 56 year old guy who was climbing is 51st 14er! He's only got two more until he's climbed them all! Well, we walked the final 75 feet to the summit and chatted. He was very encouraging & inspiring!

When I ran down the Barr Trail on the eastern face, I bumped into another runner. We talked about the PPM and he told me that he ran it last year and finished in 4:15! That's insane! I looked him up when I got home and sure enough, he finished in 5th place. I also recognized his name. Come to find out he won the Colorado Colfax Marathon back in 2007. That was my first marathon.

12 days and counting...

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