Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Fortnight Ending July 28

Week Ending July 21

Mon - 4 miles easy. Bluesky out and back.

Tues - 5 miles (1,000') easy. Falls loop.

Weds - 4 miles easy with some minute-long pick-ups. Bluesky.

Thurs - 4 miles urban jogging in Manchester, NH. Sweaty.

Fri - 3 miles super easy with Fred in White River Junction, VT. Sweaty again.

Sat - 100 miles (15,300'). Vermont 100.

Sun - Off

Total: 120 miles (16,300')

Week Ending July 28

Mon - Off

Tues - Off

Weds - Off

Thurs - Off

Fri - Off

Sat - 7.5 miles (1,700') easy. Joined friends from the Fort Collins Trail Runners for the third annual 24 Hours of Towers. Jogged out with the early starters for a single lap, then called it good. Legs felt great going up, but a little sore coming down. Borrowed Rob's wizard sticks to see how they might feel for the return trip on Hope at Leadville in three weeks, but found them to be highly annoying. Towers was probably not the best place to test them out, however.

Sun - 13 miles (5,500') easy. Mount Lady Washington (13,281') & Longs Peak (14,255'). The original plan for the morning was to hike up to the top of Mount Lady Washington with Alistair, my son, to try out the poles again and get some quality father/son time. Unfortunately, he had a meltdown the night before and decided he wasn't going, so I went up solo still with the objective of keeping things at a casual recovery effort. Again, I found the poles to be more annoying and troublesome than beneficial on the gentle jog up to the Chasm Lake turn-off, but found them moderately helpful once I started hoofing steeply up MLW's east ridge. Once off tundra however, they were again useless and were put away for the rest of the day. The views of the Diamond and Chasm Lake are quite spectacular from MLW, but otherwise the peak is a fairly unremarkable pile of rocks; a trivial sub-summit of the real master of the region. Of course once in the general vicinity of Longs, I figured it would be shameful not to grab a summit, so despite the dank, socked-in conditions I made my way over the boulders and headed up via the keyhole. Everything was super greasy once through the keyhole, so the going was a little slower  than I would have liked, and once on the viewless summit I realized I was going to have to descend way quicker than planned in order to make an early-afternoon meeting in Estes. Again, I had to be somewhat cautious on slick rock getting back to the keyhole, before having to bomb the descent back to the TH; legs protesting the whole way. Not so smart on the recovery front, but always good to get a Longs summit.

Total: 20.5 miles (7,200')

Given that Vermont marks the halfway point of the Grand Slam, and with fully four weeks until Leadville, I decided to take a week off of running to give the legs adequate opportunity to repair. Of course, I was a little overzealous in getting back into things on the weekend and I was definitely feeling significant soreness in the quads and knees while descending the 5,000 feet off Longs. Remarkably, the legs felt great the next day so no harm done it would appear.

I'll be looking to get back into a nice rhythm through this week and next, trying to get up high as life permits. A few of us will be heading up to Chapin Pass in RMNP for the 2013 rendition of Mummy Mania early on Saturday morning if anyone is interested in joining. It'll be a sunrise start and we'll be shooting for a steady to hard effort in the five- to six-hour range.  


  1. Just got a pair of wizard sticks myself. Love them. Will be in hand all day and night at UTMB. But yeah, probably useless at Leadville.

    1. I think I'm going to try them for the two miles - or whatever it is - up the return side of Hope, then hand 'em off to my mule. Maybe have them as an option on Sugerloaf coming back. You saw how pathetic I was there last year; seems like a bit of wizardry might help.

      Lots of hiking at UTMB, so I'm sure they'll come in handy. Enjoy the trip; so much fun to be had in the Alps.

  2. Dude, you gotta learn the Cables route on Longs, get off that circuitous Keyhole tourist path. Strong work out at Vermont.