Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Orcas Island 50K

Ran the Orcas 50K last Saturday. Orcas Island is a neat little island in the San Juan's, Washington State. This was an awesome trip. Marilyn came too and we traveled with Gaby and Guy. Had a blast. Ken, Dennis and Clem were also there.

The course was the toughest 50K I've done so far. I think about 7,000' of climb. Took me 6 hours, 44 minutes. Finished about mid-pack. Ken and Dennis did very well ... I think they finished in something like 6:22. Gaby and Guy did the 25K and both finished very well too. Gaby finished 8th, Guy finished 17th ... awesome. I was under-prepared for this. I really struggled up the two big climbs. My hamstrings were sore right from the start ... too much stretching in the days before the race. The worst climb was up the power line trail. This thing ran pretty much perpendicular to the contours. At some points it was steep enough to need all fours. But the downhill from this was a nice, gradual descent through some beautiful rain forest. The climb up Mount Constitution was slow and agonizing but worth it too ... beautiful views of Mount Baker. It was great to see Clem there ... he was manning the aid station. I was freezing up top there ... could have used an extra layer. I was dripping blood from a finger I cut in a tumble ... they kindly patched me up ... it was a really small cut, but blood was getting on everything. There was some snow we had to run through as well. I also ran out of water on the way up, but that was my fault ... there was a water jug at the start of the climb, but I ignored it.

Some pics are posted here. Ken has posted some nice pics too.

Marilyn fell in love with the island. Wants to move there. I wouldn't mind.

Saw lots of neat stuff, but I think the best was the pod of killer whales we saw on the ferry ride back to the mainland. Awesome.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

24 Easy Pieces

Nice, easy, slow, solo 24K today. Two times around Bald Hill and the ridge. 2.5 hours. Took Java for piece, then Kiira. It's a joy to run with them, 'cause I can see how much they like it. Kiira found a big wonking stick that she carried all the way back home. It must have weighed half as much as her. What a pistol.