I've been trying to keep some running momentum lately and it always helps to have some fun excursions to keep things fresh.
Two weeks ago, I met up with JP, JY, JZ, and CB for some miles at Matthew Winters/Red Rocks/Green Mountain. As always, it's a great time running with any of those guys. Especially when we start on a frigid and dark morning.
|The sunrise was welcomed by all, but the clouds stole some of the desired heat.
|The driest CO trails I've run on since November.
|Mt. Morrison and Red Rocks provides a nice backdrop.
|A bunch of TURDs. (Trail Ultra Running Dads - Thanks CB)
Last weekend, we had the opportunity to spend some time in the Icebox of America. Just being in the mountains with a spectacular view of Byers Peak from the condo, the pull to get out and run was quite strong.
Did I mention it was cold? The first morning, I got a half mile into my run and passed a Bank of the West sign that showed the temperature at minus 11 (not sure how accurate it was). I cruised up County Road 72 from downtown Fraser pressing my gloves onto the exposed skin of my cheeks and entered the National Forest at Elk Creek. At the trailhead parking lot, there was a snowcat parked off to the side. Could it be? Yes, groomed trails/roads! It was brilliant. I ventured a few miles into the forest on hard-packed snow and could have run for many, many more had time allowed.
The next day I drove to County Road 73 to start my run. It was downright toasty on Sunday.
I got about a half mile into the run and snapped this picture of Byers Peak. My camera froze and became non-functional on both days, so this is the only shot I came home with.
After about four miles of dirt road running, I came to the end of the line. The road turned into a snowmobile only trail. I continued on it another mile trying to step where snowshoers or cross-country skiers had left tracks, but the snow was not nearly as solid and I was breaking through.
All in all, I feel like I found a great place for some mountain running in the winter. Those county and forest service roads are either plowed or groomed! I got close to Byers Peak and summit fever hit, but that will have to wait for another, much warmer day.
|The view from the condo and my amateurish sketching abilities.