Mt Sanitas - 5 AM
40s, wet, cloudy
mind/body - strong
Who suggested this 12 hours of Sanitas anyway? Oh yah.... I guess that was me. I must of been sitting at my computer conjuring up crazy things when thinking of this. WOW! This was tough.
I met Darcy at the Centennial TH just before 5 AM and we had our goodies for our own little aid station at the shelter. The first lap it was dark so we had our head lamps and way too many layers... it looked cold but in reality it was very nice for running. We went counter clockwise and had a very easy first lap talking about anything and everything running, including our positions on the non-moving HR list. Which is why were doing this run in the first place - no better training for HR. This loop consists of 1300 ft of climbing and only 3.4-5 myles per loop. Lots and lots of rocks as you come down the ridge on the Sanitas trail so very technical.
As we shed our layers at the make-shift aid station we headed up the Valley trail for lap two, light enough but still no people. We both were running pretty much everything to this point except the very top of Mt Sanitas. On the 3rd loop I was now chasing a fellow who was moving pretty well, turns out it was Peter Bakwin (FKT for 12 hours - 16 laps). I'd never met him so I was peppering him with questions because the man has done some many different things to include a DOUBLE Hard Rock a few years back. We ran together for two loops and then he was off, bolting down the Goat trail back home. Next couple of laps kinda ran together as I was just a few minutes in front of Darcy but as the clouds cleared the people of Boulder flocked. I passed a couple people (Jaime and Donny) who were going the other way but graciously introduced themselves and gave words of encouragement - thanks guys!
Oh I almost forgot, early on in the day I saw a familiar face doing laps in the other direction - John Hemsky. John made the drive up from Ken Caryl, he and I passed each other in almost the same spot each time, meaning we were going about the same pace. John probably did 7 or 8 laps before taking off, very nice job John.
So round and round I went feeling remarkably strong up through 8 laps. I was running all the way up to the sign on the Meadow trail each lap and then intermittent hiking and running the rest of the way up to the top. At the end of lap 8, I met up with Jeff Valliere and John Prater. People I've never met but frequent their blogs. It was good to finally put a face to name and meet some new people. They sauntered with me for my final two laps - 9 and 10. We talked about running, racing, climbing, you name it running - good conversations, thanks guys! As we were finishing 9 we also met up with Garett Graubins who was doing what they call the Skyline traverse. He was 4.5 hours into his own run and was still looking at another two hours to get back to his car. He finished with me, chatted a bit, and was on his way. Good catching up Garett!
So why only 7 hours?? Good question. It certainly wasn't the prescribed 12 hours BUT I was content with the work I put in... and the fact that my fickle calf was getting mad again. A little twinge, you know. It's sore right now but nothing too bad. So I bowed out after 7 hours, 10 laps, and 13,000 feet of climbing. Not a bad day eh? Now let me tell you what Darcy did... SHE finished 15 laps in 11.30! That is a new Fastest Known Time (FKT) for the women. That is 52.5 myles and 19,500 feet of climbing - way to go Darcy!
Here are my lap splits for the day:
1 - 42:44
2 - 38:43
3 - 39:54
4 - 43:19
5 - 39:53
6 - 40:54
7 - 40:51
8 - 42:17
9 - 46:38
10 - 45:12
And thanks to all my new (and old) friends who came out: Jaime (hyme), Donny, John Hemsky, John Prater, JV, Peter Bakwin, and Garett Graubins. Hope to see you all on the trail real soon!