Thursday, October 7, 2010

The 'Assault on the Rock'


Horsetooth Rock from the east side of Horsetooth Reservoir.


FCTR on the Summit.

We (Fort Collins Trail Runners) have been time-trialing Towers Road all year, so for a change of pace tonight we took on the landmark that commands the local Front Range skyline, Horsetooth Rock (7,255').

The ascent from the main parking lot to the summit varies from 2.4 miles to 2.6 miles, depending on the route taken, with close to 1,500' of vertical gain. The final 100 feet of vertical gain requires a good amount of scrambling, but the views from the top are well worth the effort.


Coming down off the last pitch to the summit. Photo, Don Walker

We had 25 turn out for what was being dubbed 'The Assault on the Rock,' with runners choosing their own route from a range of possible options. The service drive option is a little longer, but way less technical than the singletrack route. With the service drive and trail intersecting each other in four separate places along the route, there are multiple route combinations to choose from, and the jury is still out on which combination is quickest.

From the trailhead map, I went trail up to the bench then Southridge service drive as far as it goes before hooking back into the trail for the last half mile to the north summit. The route is exactly 2.5 miles and I think probably the fastest, despite being longer than the more direct trail option. The Audra trail cut-off from Southridge might be a little quicker given that it is a little less technical near the top, but I think it's probably much of a muchness.


Mary B on trail. Photo, Don Walker

Anyway, the short and the long of it is that I managed to shave a half minute off my PR, despite pre-run sandbagginess about a hamstring strain from an overzealous return to the track two days prior. Jenn Malmberg set yet another area FKT with her 29:40 ascent, while most everyone else established or set PRs on what was a perfect evening for running.






A perfect evening on top. Photos, Don Walker.

North Summit TT details

Fastest Known Times

Nick Clark: 23:50 (12/29)
Jenn Malmberg: 29:40 (10/7)

Full 10/7 TT times .............................10/21

Aaron ........ 29:30 (to plateau).........N/A
Alex A ........ 35:15.............................34:20
Alex M ....... 33:16..............................??
Bard.............???................................34:00
Brian ......... Lost (!)..........................40:03
Cat ............. 38:20 (to plateau)........Ran home
Celeste ....... 43:00 (plateau)............43:00
Dan B ........ 34:10.............................33:41
Dan J ......... 34:10 (to plateau)........N/A
Don ............ 39:14..............................42:00
Don ..............N/A...............................37:00
Jennifer ..... 44:31..............................43:20
Jenn M ....... 29:40(!).......................N/A
Jocelyn...........N/A............................45:08
Kate ............ 35:06............................35:41
Kharah ....... 36:02.............................N/A
Laura .......... 36:38............................N/A
Laura ............N/A.............................42:00
Lindsay..........N/A.............................43:00
Marie .......... 37:45............................35:03
Mark...............??................................34:00
Mary ........... 34:37............................33:44
Matt...............N/A.............................30:00
Mike T.............N/A...........................39:40
Nick M ........ 28:58...........................29:30
Nick C ......... 25:26(!).......................25:38
Pablo .......... 37:32............................Ran Home
Pete ............. 28:54...........................30:23
Rob .............. 32:05...........................N/A
Ross.................N/A............................30:30
Sam ............. 26:04...........................N/A
Slush ........... 27:25............................27:31
Tracy ........... 53:00...........................N/A
Travis .......... 36:37...........................N/A

Total............... 27 .............................. 25

I think we'll have enough light for one more Assault in two weeks, before heading back to the Towers routine as winter darkness sets in.

3 comments:

  1. Yup, a most foreign concept.

    I think I'm going to run (and train for) a road marathon in Feb. Tuesday was a feeler session. Unfortunately it didn't feel at all good, but I suspect the process will become a little more enjoyable as I get into it.

    Are you coming up on Sunday?

    ReplyDelete
  2. That is still sort of the plan...my lack of track work should be readily apparent :)

    ReplyDelete