Winter is back in Vail but, I am still running! I have had a few great snowy runs at night around the villages these past few weeks. Today I took rooster for a loop on the North Trail behind my neighborhood. We have a bunch of fresh snow and yesterday was opening day at the ski resort. I got out for opening day and it was awesome, lots of pow slashing, making for some sore legs today. This afternoon was nice and sunny and it was just beautiful our there. I wore my Hoka Stinson ATR’s and they did pretty well in the snow, size 13 is almost like a snowshoe. Rooster was off the leash and having a blast digging sticks and rocks out of the snow, staying behind then sprinting like a crazy dog to catch up. This trail is awesome and with some determination and packing out, can be ran all winter. Right in my back yard, it’s amazing views of the ski resort and a sweet climb and downhill. It’s already snowing again and were expecting 18 inches by Monday, tomorrow I’ll ride the resort with my brother and friends and then Monday hopefully I can get out on my split board for the first time this season. I also start my new job at the Ice Breaker store in Vail Village Monday. Ice Breaker makes some amazing gear that I can’t wait to run in. Life is good here.
Saturday I went for one of the more EPIC runs of my life, linking up three back country lakes in the Gore Range. My friend Brian who had done this loop 4 times already this summer would show me the way. We met at the trail head for Deluge and Gore Lake hikes around 9am. These two separate hikes share a trail head, and can be connected by going over a pass and finding some trail. This was my first run since that 10 mile road race last Sunday and it felt amazing. We got way back in the Gore and saw maybe 3 hikers the whole time. It was snowy up high and the lakes were mostly frozen over. The scene at each lake was amazingly tranquil in its own way. There was a fair amount of scrambling thrown in and some sketchy spots where I had to help Rooster out a little. For the most part Rooster was all over the place chasing sticks and carrying rocks. On the way out from Gore Lake I was running a little late for a new part time job at Peak Performance Footwear, a running store in Edwards. Brian who has been dealing with some IT band issues, is hard to keep up with in the high alpine terrain but goes slower on the regular trail and tells me to go ahead and not wait for him. I started bombing steep sections of the 6 mile trail on the way out trying to get home and shower by like 3 and end up falling HARD. I always have close calls but usually catch myself, but its part of trail running and this time I just ate it. Right away i saw blood on my hand and leg and noticed a big cut on my hand. I was halfway in a puddle and worried i broke or got my new camera wet (it was OK). It hurt getting back up and I was wet and covered in mud. I smashed my right toes, right knee, left elbow, and left shoulder somehow. I had a mile or 2 left to my car and was still running late so instead of washing off and using my first aid kit, i just booked it back to the car, hand covered in blood, shoulder in mud. I came across a couple of hikers who looked worried and offered band aids but, i assured them i was OK and would just hurry back to the car. I made it back fine, showered and cleaned up, and made it over to start my new job at Peak Performance Footwear. This loop took about 5 hours, I wore by Altra Olympus and Nathan Vest. I made good use of leftover Halloween candy and had like 4 Almond Joys and a Reese’s PB Cup. I drank some GU Brew and Water. It was an EPIC run to cap off my summer. I don’t fall like that that often but its always a reminder to slow down and take it easy. Today is Monday and we have a few inches of snow here on the ground in town, I am looking forward to snowboarding and the occasional winter run.
Last weekend on Saturday I wanted to try and tag the summit of Bald Mountain again but ended up turning around in the woods somewhere on the way. Luke and Rooster joined me and we started later in the morning, parking at the Vail Stables and going out Straddle Creek Road. It was a really warm day for late October and I ended up getting sunburned on my shoulders. There is no clear trail to the top and this makes it difficult, I was using a compass but was pretty far away from the summit. This was the first time bringing my new Sony A6000 Camera out on a run, i got some decent pics but am still figuring out how to work a non-iPhone camera. It was a 10 mile run up and down a mountain with a few miles of bushwhacking. I will definitely be back for that summit as I can see it from my deck and it stares at me daily.
On Sunday I did a 10 Mile Road Race in Minturn. The “Tombstone Ten-Miler” put on by Speckled Hound Racing. I thought running in a banana costume would be fun and it was another beautiful summer-like fall day. The first 7 miles were on flat paved roads and bike path then we got a few miles of dirt trail above the river which was nice. I finished around 1:18 i think and was 5th overall 2nd
In mens 20s and 1st in costume. Speckled Hound Racing does a great job of putting on a race!