Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Moving Right Along: Hardrock 100

Just as I finally feel like I've caught up with work, family, and life in general post-Western States, the train is getting ready to pull back out of the station.

I'm heading out to Gunnison after work on Thursday to stay with my good buddy Ryan Burch, and then Friday morning we'll be heading down to Telluride to access the first crew point (28 miles) on the grueling Hardrock 100 course, which kicks off at 6:00am Friday.

The plan is to catch the early action in Telluride and help out our runner Nick Pedatella with anything he might need, and then head over to Ouray (mile 42) where Ryan will assume pacing duties for the next 28 miles. I'll then head over to Grouse Gulch aid station (50 something miles) to check in on the action there, before driving out to the Sherman aid station (70 miles) from where I'll be pacing Nick into the finish through the night. Gonna be a long day/night.

I'm not really into the Twitter thing, i.e. I don't have an account, but I'll be taking some pics and video from the early aid stations, so be sure to check the blog Saturday (early and late afternoon) for some (almost) live footage, which I should be uploading from Telluride and Ouray once we've helped Nick through those aid stations.

So who's gonna' win? Tough to call really. Meltzer seems to like his chances despite the various injuries he's currently carrying, but I don't see it myself. I'm picking teammate Scott Jaime for the win with a time in the 26-hour range. I'm also pulling for Nick P of course, and hoping that Ryan and I can help pull him through to a podium finish. Last year's runner up Troy Howard is also running, but he had a rough time at Western States two weeks ago, and I just don't see how you come back from that within two weeks to be competitive at Hardrock. I prefer John Anderson for the podium this year. He's a tough Boulder-based mountain runner and I'm sure he'll be ready. I'm also pulling for buddies Brooks Williams and PittBrownie to have great races too.

Top five men: Scott Jaime, Karl Meltzer, Nick Pedatella, John Anderson, Jared Campbell.

In the women's race, I like the head-to-head between Darcy Africa and last year's winner (and course record holder) Diana Finkel. Both are great endurance mountain runners, but I'm definitely pulling for teammate Darcy. Former winner, Betsy Nye should round out the top three.

Stay tuned Saturday afternoon for some footage and commentary from the early stages of the race.


  1. Have fun, and good luck with pacing nmp!
    I posted some minor observations on ~8-9 miles of the course.

    If you're looking to kill brain cells even more quickly than elevation, in Ouray, you could do worse than sitting at O'Brien's pub with fish 'n chips and a London Pride, watching climbers on the rock walls above town...and as far as Silverton, I think the brewery's Red Mountain Ale has quickly become one of my all-time favorites...

  2. Oh, right, forgot the other point of the post: Kendall Mountain in Silverton. Have you seen it before? Forget about the S-hill in Salida, my gawd, Kendall is a nice 13er that hulks over town, and has a 13-mile RT road/trail going up it. There's a race the week after Hardrock.

    Anyway, you should budget some time and energy to run up the darn thing if you get a chance. Otherwise, it will just sit there, lurking and taunting you while the whole time you're in Silverton. Trust me.

  3. You're gonna catch the bug and give up WS to run Hardrock next year.

    Mike H is correct on the Red Mountain Ale and Kendall Mountain.

  4. And check out the small mining museum in Silverton. My grandfather was a hardrock miner there for several years, and there are some amazing stories about mining at ridiculous elevations even in the winter...avalanches, getting stuck in tram buckets all night...


  5. Graet support Nick; you show your rugby background well. Scott for sure if he's strong, or Karl will clean up as you did in WS100.

  6. Mike - thanks for the tip on the London Pride. I'm sure it won't taste quite like it does at home (and will likely be served chilled), but still... Oh, and never been to Silverton, so no on Kendall Mountain.

    Kyle - that sounds like one for the next visit. Had no idea you came from such hardy stock. What happened? ;)

    Rick - If Karl is truly ready to run then he is clearly the favorite. I'm just not sure he is.

  7. Mike - My understanding is the course marking is a little spotty so not too surprising you had some trouble finding it. I'll definitely be carrying a map...oh, and thanks for the tip for Saturday post-race :)

  8. Good luck to all the runners at HR!
    Nick, enjoy your WS success and have fun crew/pacing too! Wish I was there....Steven ATX.

  9. nmp, good luck! You need a regular blog so we can wish you 'good luck' there!

    I felt that the Handies section was obvious and almost over-marked, which is why I was a little more confused by Ice Lakes. But, that's early on, so you'll have plenty of daylight, energy, and company to figure it out. Have fun!