running


Do you run with a dog?  I do.  Her name is Sami (Stupid/Smart am I – Depending on her circumstances). She is a 2+ year old yellow labrador.  Sami weighs in at 85 to 90 pounds.

The vet has approved the plan.  Sami is old enough and very willing to run.  She has run as far as 12 miles with me in the last year. She can do it and enjoys the runs seemingly more than I do! The only thing she does that tends to tick me off is at the end of a run.  The closer we get to the end, the more she turns around and stares at me, silently urging me to “Catch up to the pack!”

Last weekend we ran 7 miles, the week before 7 miles, 2 weeks ago 8 miles. I often run with Sami off leash. I do a belly wrap with the leash so she wears it, but it doesn’t drag on the ground, it is loose enough not to chafe her, and I have a ‘handle’ to hold her with should the need arrive.

Sami is trained to run off-leash!  She has some specific running commands that she is very good with.  Among them are, “Leave it,” C’mere” (Heel),  “wait” (handy at busy intersections), “Go” (release), and, of course, “Good girl!”

I wear an Amphipod belt with water bottles on it.  Each of us have the same number of water bottles (either 1 or 2 based on the length of the run).  She has learned to drink from a sports bottle and anticipates it when the time is right!

Lazy Sami

The Half-Marathon!

We will be running “The Slacker” as our half-marathon.  It is a dog-friendly high-altitude 13.1 miles that drops 2,200 feet with a really fun 1/2 mile uphill at the end.  Should be a fun thing to do!

It will be held on June 25th this year. That gives both Sami and I time to train and become acclimated to the altitude.

If you are familiar with Colorado, the race starts just below the Eisenhower/Johnson Tunnels where I-70 crosses the continental divide, and uses trail, roads and recreation paths as it makes the way to the finish at Georgetown, Colorado.

We do not have a training plan yet.  Both of us run between 20 to 25 miles per week.  The long runs have been 6 to 8 miles.  Another month or so and we’ll be able to step into the middle of a training plan.

Catch Up –

In January, I ran 22 times for a total distance of 104.23 miles.

In February, I ran 21 runs for a total of 104.23 miles.

So far this year, I have run 205.95 miles.

What?  Yes! Sami has run a similar amount!

 

You know, getting up at 4:00 AM is never fun, especially if you work the swing shift. That time came awfully early. I actually woke up before the alarm (a misnomer as I did not set the alarm).

 

The Expo –

 

But, I’m getting ahead of the game.  Like most larger venues, you have to pick up the race packet early. I’m not sure why that is, but I have my suspicions that it assists in raising anticipation and suspense in the runner. It may save the event’s coordinators by not having additional staff, it may assist by providing more focus toward the run, it may be for any reason. I have my suspicions, though.

 

So we (my good friend Tom and I) headed down to Denver’s City Park and the beautiful pavilion building that the Expo was being held at on Saturday morning. We were both going to run the half-marathon.  The sun was out, it was warm, but the sky was partly cloudy.

Expo View

 

The packet pickup booths were outside and clearly marked. You gave your name to a technician at the greeter’s booth, and received a small print out with your event and number. Using that, you went to the appropriate booth and got your packet. Inside the packet, was a Cardboard timing chip for the shoe, some coupons, and the bib number. My bib number was 5108.

 

The names on the half-marathon bib numbers all seemed to be incorrect. I had the name, “Roger,” on mine. No explanation was given except that a mistake had been made. 

Th_Colfax2010Bib

 

Having completed the first part of the maze, we went to the BEER booth to show our ID and get a bracelet (to be worn on the right wrist for the next 24 hours – It saves you from having to carry your ID to the beer garden after the finish). We went from there to see what was offered in the Expo merchandise.

 

We weaved through all kinds of merchant’s booths. Great prices and discounts were offered.  There were all kinds of booths.  I got a pair of cheap running socks for the Boulder Running Company, and I stole a pair of Mizuno Nirvana 6 shoes from Runner’s Roost.  They offer a 60 day return policy on shoes they sell.  These were returned shoes.  I examined them closely after I tried them on.  At $50 for the pair, I gladly bought them.  I’ll add them to my runs after the first of June, and they will probably be the shoes that I’ll run the Seattle Rock and Roll Marathon in on June 26th. Tom got a pair of Nike Lunar Elite+ for the same price.

 

We got our shirts at the shirt booth. Nice shirts this year. Performance shirt, white with a great design on them. As we left the Expo, the timing chip was tested. Both passed and we were on our way out. We  smoothed with some other runners and petted some dogs outside.  Then it was time to head out for the rest of our Saturday.

 

I performed the usual evening before ritual of preparation.  Shoes (with the chip on it), socks, shorts, shirt (with the bib number mounted), headband, sunglasses, phone charging, water belt (sans water), iPod, coin purse with Hammer Endurolytes, and charged the Garmin 205 Sports Watch. I felt to be prepared.  There is comfort in my pre-race ritual.

 

The Race –

 

4:00 AM did come early.  One cup of coffee. I immediately ate a bowl of oatmeal. Dressed, and double-checked that I was ready then out the door by 5:00 AM.  There was a race today!

 

The plan was to go to Colorado Boulevard then North to City Park. The streets weren’t supposed to be closed until 5:30 AM.  By the time we got to Colorado and Colfax, Colorado had been closed.  We had to do some uncertain turns and twists, but we did get there!

 

It was announced that there were 750 full marathon runners and 7,000 or more of us running the half. Quite the turnout this year.

 

There was parking available still, and we got as close as we could in the East side parking at the Denver Zoo. A short walk and we were at the start line in plenty of time.  The full marathon runners were in the chute and in their corrals.  We watched as the timer counted down and then the marathoners were off!

 

In another 45 minutes, we would be starting our 13.1 mile run.

 

It was a cool morning with a slight breeze.  I tend to take a cheap throw to keep warm with.  I wore it until the start of the race, then threw it over the fence as a throw-away.  I knew that it could be used by someone.  These throw away items are collected and given to charity.

 

The chute for the starting line was short. It just could not fit all of the runners.  When the starting countdown was done and we were off, there were runners everywhere.  Not only from the chute but from the waiting/spectator area to the South.

 

I had visited the porta-potty before the race but the moment we had the start, I had to visit one again. Why does that happen?  The first available were about 2 miles into the race. I joined a fair-sized line and it took about 12 minutes to get to one.  When you have no choice, though, what do you do?

 

The race started with a run through City Park (literally). We ran from the park and down City Park Esplanade to Colfax, then East on Colfax.  We ran into the rising sun as we progressed down East Colfax toward the Fitzsimmon’s Medical Center.  Water stations were every 2 miles or so.  Gatorade and water were offiered. Mile markers were marked by huge stickers on the street with sandwich boards on the sidewalks. At strategic points there was a “Gun Time” clock.

 

There was a slight elevation on the run to the 7 mile.  Total ascent/descent was 150 feet.  Slight for the first couple of noticeable rises, but I really felt the rise from the 5 mile mark to the 7 mile mark. From there we turned the corner to run through the Fitzsimmon’s Medical Center to 17th Street and the return run to City Park.  As I turned onto 17th, I noticed a younger man running my pace. I stayed behind him, but used him as my pacer.

 

It was easier running 17th Street.  The sun was at my back and it was a run through a neighborhood.  Time seemed to fly as the run progressed.  The miles ticked on by. Around mile 8, I finally caught up to and ran beside my pacer.  I told him that I had been using him as my pacer, so we might as well run together.  He was surprised that he was someone’s pacer, but agreed to run in together.

 

It made for a nice run for the last few miles.  We talked, and introduced ourselves. Ron was running this race for the 3rd time. His wife was supposed to run it with him but did not feel she had trained enough. He had anticipated a 12 minute pace, but he was doing much better.  We got into a rhythm at a better pace than either of us anticipated.  So, it was a good match for a finish.

 

All too soon, we crossed Colorado Boulevard again and we entered the park. The end of the race was at hand now.  We maintained the pace until the finish line was in sight.  I kicked it up a touch to cross the line.  On the way, I was passed by two runners and I passed two.

 

I slowed down after crossing the timing mats, waited just a moment for Ron, then shook his hand and thanked him for the finish!

 

I moved on as Ron went for that finisher kiss and hug from his wife over the fence.

 

I grabbed a cold bottle of water.  I saw the medal handlers and headed for mine.  I asked the young lady that placed my medal over my head if I could have a hug. She said sure, and my tradition of a hug continued!

KPColfaxHMMedal

 

I walked the gauntlet from the finish line through the pavilion.  On the way and inside, it was the pickup of the Goody bag, energy drinks, sport beans, teas, and then your choice of a pulled pork BBQ sandwich or a chicken taco.   Tom finished long before me, so I met him outside. 

 

Before I got into the pavilion, I got a text message from Kristen.  I was hoping to meet her as we both run and tweet.  We’ve been exchanging tweets for 2 years or so.  After I had my sandwich, Tom and I headed over to the Beer Garden.  We met Kristen and drank some beer.  Fun times!

 

I love the half-marathon distance.  It is my favorite race to run.  If you get a chance, try it out.  It improves your health and opens doors to other people engaged in the same like of running that others have. Plus, the bib and the medal make for an additional pleasure that you can hold and appreciate.

CEWRunnerBoard05172010

It was a great race and a wonderful was to spend an athletic Sunday morning!

 

The Humor –

 

“Remember, the second most important thing to choosing the right shoe, is choosing the left one.”
— A high school coach to his runners

The Seattle Rock and Roll Marathon is officially sold out.

That’s OK, though, as I am in!  Tom, my best friend, is also registered for the full marathon!  I also hope to meet my friend, Lizzie Lee!

Are you going to run the Seattle Rock and Roll Marathon?  Let me know!  Let’s have a Tweet UP!  I am @cewtwo on Twitter!  My Facebook page is at http://www.Facebook.com/cewtwo

 

Running Update

I have worked on my speed since January.  I don’t train well outside, but I do train well on the treadmill.

In March, I ran 26 runs for a distance of 121.9 miles at a pace of 9:05.

In February, I ran 20 runs for distance of 106.5 miles at a pace of 9:44.

In January, I ran 21 times for a distance of 105.4 miles at a pace of 11:49.

The overall for 2010 is 67 runs for a distance 333.8 miles at an average pace of 10:09.

So, there is measurable improvement for me!

 

Why The Title?

I want to get my treadmill time down to a regular 9 minute mile.  I am almost there or very close to it.  My figuring is, based on very little research, is that time will translate to a 10:00 minute mile outside.

My best 5K time in a race is 27:15.  Since January, I have run a 27:10 5K and today I ran a 26:58 5K (Both were in March).  As a barometer to my training, I think that is a great thing for me.

But then…  Who knows?  Do let me know what you think!

 

 

 

 

Running –

I ran 1.53 miles last week.  Seemed a good distance for the condition my condition is in.  Little or no repercussion with the PF.

I ran a total of 6.1 miles for the month of June.  I will sure be happy when I can increase that amount comfortably.

The Plantar Fasciitis is still here with me, but getting better every week.

Bicycling –

Last week was a good week for the bicycle.  I logged 108.38 miles.  That does include 55.6 miles of Long Ride S(aturday or Sunday).  The Sunday before was a 25 mile ride and I rode 30.5 miles on Saturday morning.  I’m working the old bike for all that it is worth.

I rode a total of 255+ miles for the month of June.

We are so lucky to have nice trails on the South side of Denver.  They are always improving the trails, too!

Sami –

The dog is growing in leaps and bounds.  Sometimes, she looks at me and I am reminded of what a mature look she has.  Then she’ll run after something and fall over her own too long legs and large feet.

We’re learning.  All (everything) below waist level in the house is being packed away.  If Sami can reach it, she’ll chew it.  So, packing it away until she stops chewing everything was our solution.

In July, Sami will be spayed.  It will be around the middle of the month.

Sami is going to Obedience One, starting Monday, July 6th.  I just have to remember that the class is actually for me and not for Sami.  I do hope that I learn and that she will follow suit!

Sami

This is Sami after a day in the Jeep on the trail!

Jeeping –

Every year a group of us get together to honor a couple of friend’s birthdays!  This weekend was one of those runs.  We ended up with a group of 11 rigs.  We ran the Mount St. Vrain and the Coney Flats trails.

The trip took a little over 9 hours from meeting in Boulder, Colorado to when we aired our tires back up at Bear Reservoir (I think that might be as most of us like to jaw a bit too much).

We had a good time and it was a great group to roll with.  We took our time and just had a lot of fun.  The trail was challenging enough to keep things interesting and had a lot of water challenges and crossings.

The climb to the major stream crossing was the most challenging, but the water crossing had to be the most fun.  Here are some of the people crossing the river!

Throuhwater1

Throughwater3

TomThroughwater

Yes! Everybody made it through!  No one stalled out.  As a matter of fact, many people tried it 2 or 3 times!

Finally, Tom posed the Mighty YJ so we could all see the underside of the rig!

Tomposes

We came off the trail tired , hungry and eager to set off for our individual’ Sunday evenings!

MountainsAnd, Mountains as seen from the major stream crossing…

Yes, birthday cake was served!  Brought one in with the face of a monkey just to prove that we can monkey around and still get a fun ride in, too!

 

 

 

 

Tags:

The definition of CHANGES is To cause to be different: change the spelling of a word.’

That has happened a lot to me lately.  Some of it was not so good, some of it really was good!

 

Running

I have run 2.75 miles in June.  That is a major change from what I have done in the past!  The Plantar Fasciitis is getting better all of the time.  I’m hoping when I see my Doctor in July that he’ll give me a green light for running again!

 

Bicycling

I have ridden my GT bike for 115.3 miles in June.  I’ve done that in 10 rides. With a 4:59 pace and an average of 12 MPH. 

I am riding the bike Geared UP!  That means it ride with the chain on the front largest sprocket AND the back sprocket.  It is tough, but it builds strong muscles and is a work out!

I have some regular rides that have a certain length.  Makes it easier for me to go out and ride while attempting to improve both my time and my endurance.

My last weekend long ride was 20 miles.  I’m planning a 25 mile ride for this weekend.

 

Sami

I miss Molly very much still.  We were so comfortable together.  Grief still affects me when I see a picture or think about her.  I often dream of her. It is still so hard to believe that she is gone from my life.

A puppy.  That is what Tom said.  Get a puppy!  So, we have a puppy.  There is a lot of difference between an older dog and a puppy!  I’d forgotten what I went through with Molly.  Now, it is coming back as this new life is a major part of my life now.

Sami on trail

Sami can be a cute little girl!  She can also be a terror!  I build Lego models and she has found AND chewed a lot of them.

But, you know, I’m learning.  Most of the house has been rendered “Puppy Safe” now.  There is a gate between the kitchen and the dining room.

She is registered for a beginning obedience class starting on Monday, July 6th.  Then, soon after, she will be visiting the veterinarian for her spaying.

 

Jeeping

First of all, Sami has been on 2 additional trips since her first memorable one.  We leave with more time to travel, take breaks more often, and she is traveling much better.  She is getting bigger (it seems by the day) and I leave her in the back seat now.  She is just too large to sit on my lap when I am not driving.

The Empire Hilton

As snow clears from the high country in our beautiful Rocky Mountains, jeeps find their way on to trails that have been closed through the Winter. 4 jeeps got together to ride the Empire Hilton (Mill Creek) trail.

We started by going up Red Elephant (on a mountain by the same name). Red elephant is a steep trail with loose dirt and some interesting obstacles.  The first major obstacle is a sudden down hill at a camber.  As you drive it, you think that you will tip over.  You don’t, but that is not the feeling that you get.

There are also areas with large rock outcroppings that you have to find the right line to go up them.

The Mill Creek trail goes off to the side of Red Elephant at the top.  It has 2 creek crossings and a bog area on it.  The most interesting thing on the trail is an aged cabin known as The Empire Hilton.  The National Forest Service maintains it in a living museum state. It has doors and windows and is fairly well sealed against the elements.  It is furnished and has a wood stove in it.  It has all of the elements of a place that you can stay at or live in.

There is a tradition to leave an item of yours on your first visit there.  There is also a register to record your visit in.

Empire Hilton

Air wheel

Pat Snow

 

Spring Creek

Spring Creek is a challenging trail near the Denver area.  It has rock faces, tight turns, rock obstacles and a “Rock Garden.”

Springcreekgroupshot06132009

9 rigs attended this “Trail” party.  This is one of the trails where testosterone can reign supreme.  Men (and women) drive their rigs to impress themselves (and hopefully others) with their abilities.  Sometimes after their attempt, they may need some help in getting over the obstacle.

Winching the rock face

Others can accomplish it with no trouble.

Climbing the Rock Face

We had a lot of fun and it took most of the day to run those 9.6 miles.  It also gave us a chance to relax, spend time with friends and take a lot of pictures!

Pat Jake

Finally…  Here is Tom in The Mighty YJ taking a difficult line in the “Rock Garden.”

 Tomrockgarden

 Almost Forgot!

I did finally get access to my old blog at http://why-how-what-where-i-run.blogspot.com/. I wouldn’t go there if I were you as I have transferred all of my data to this new blog already! (Thanks, Tim!)

 

Running

I am actually on schedule! I ran 30.69 miles last week and included a 13.47 long run. I rode the bike along the Highline canal for 14.55 miles. Cross training on the bike is a nice change!

I can never get any of my runs to measure to exactly what the schedule calls for. I tend to run a little long.

I am now ingesting a CoQ10 supplement. I feel much better and my undefined aches and pains are going away. That is a good thing!

Bowie is an Explorer! (or he just got away!)

Bowie is the rescue cat that I have. He is a cute little guy that just does not realize that he has limitations. He thinks that he is just like every cat that is out there. The only problem is that most of the other cats do not have hip displascia or is blind.

We realized that Bowie had skipped out on us late Friday night. We still aren’t sure how it happened, but the little guy was left in the back yard as everyone went to work. Usually the back yard is a treasured sanctuary for this cat. He never leaves it. Of course, that is primarily due to the fact that every exit from the yard has been found and blocked.

Unfortunately, we had one of those summer thunderstorms over most of the South end of Denver. Bowie escaped the back yard. We had no idea how he got out or where he was!

Molly, the Australian Shepard, was no help. I repeatedly asked her to find him, but she seemed most happy to take on the responsibility of accepting all the love for her that was usually showered on him. Hmmm…

I started to wander down one block, then through the alley, then up another block, and down the alley on it, and on and on. I was on a fairly busy residential street near the house calling his name and slapping my hands together. I suddenly heard a Bowie sized squeak, and saw him running toward where my voice was. His head was moving from side to side as he tried to follow my voice. I called to him and he came right to me. I picked him up and took him back home.

Of course, now he believes himself to be a great explorer. Found him out of the back yard again this morning. I am sealing up all of the escape routes again!

It sure can worry you when a special friend gets lost like that!

Jeeping

We took the MightyYJ to Jenny Creek on Saturday. Jenny Creek is a trail near the east end of the Moffat Tunnel. The Moffat Tunnel is 6 miles long and runs freight and Amtrac trains under the continental divide to the western half of the state.

Jenny Creek is a challenging trail that actually follows the creek bed at 2 or 3 places. At the end there is a 10- foot long snow drift that you have to winch over to finish the trail. Always a lot of fun.



We winched up the snow, then drove back down and back out along the trail! And… No, I did not run the trail!

This is a short video of my friend, Tom, driving the MightyYJ through the creek.



Remember that this is a National Forest Service sanctioned trail!

Had a little trouble getting out, though…

cewtwo

Nah! It was a staged shot. The train was sitting there waiting its turn at passing through the tunnel!

Astronomy

I am automating the telescopes for astrophotography. It is an involved process that computers really help with. We do not have all of the parts yet, but we have started some trial runs at it.



Outside set up with the computer running the rig.



Just the telescopes setup (with a view of Bowie’s backyard). Notice the extreme weight set up used to counterbalance the telescope rig!

That’s it!

I thought that I might catch up on some things.

First of all, Running – I ran 38 miles last week. Mostly sweet, comfortable, junk miles. It is ever so nice to finish a competition and then go into a rest mode. Nothing is quite as nice as a rest mode. I even ran 28.2 miles the week after my last competition.

So far this week, I have run 20 1/2 miles. As with all things, even a rest mode needs to stop so that you can train for the next competition. That being, The Phedippidations Worldwide Half-Marathon!

Personal Medical –
Other things can happen to a person in the meantime. My Doctor prescribed for me a colonoscopy. It is a preventative measure due to my being older than 50. It happens on the 11th @ 11:30 AM. The day before is a clear liquid diet day with a prescription laxative at 5:00 PM on the 10th and then again at 5:00 AM on the morning of the 11th. Now that you’re all grossed out, let’s move on!

Trail Shuttle Vehicle –
On Saturday August 18th, there was a problem with my trail shuttle vehicle. My good friend left the Mighty YJ running, in neutral, and he thought he set the e-brake. As it ended up, he didn’t.

Here is what happened. We were taking a new trail – The Hidden Valley Road. With recent rains, the trail had been washing out. The road surface was gravel – soft and loose. The one main obstacle on the trail had to be taken. Although there was a go-around for the obstacle, it was blocked by a large pine tree that had fallen over. So, everyone had to take the main path and go over the obstacle.

The Mighty YJ has ARB lockers on the front and back axles. That means that the axles lock and both tires on the axle can spin at the same time and together (essentially “locking” them together). There were three vehicles on the trail that day. As we were locked, we drove it first. Then we turned around and faced the obstacle. This would allow us to winch the others up should they need it. As you can see above, our friend Ben did need to be winched over the obstacle. We pulled him up and over. We took the Mighty YJ back up to the top of the hill. My friend left it running, in neutral and thought that he set e-brake at that point.

I was still at the obstacle when I heard a rushing engine noise and a wooden sounding sudden stop. I thought to myself that someone on the trail today was in an awful hurry…

Then I realized that it was my ride home! I ran over to see what had happened. The Mighty YJ had rolled down the go-around and hit the tree blocking it. The Mighty YJ was buried deep in that tree. The Mighty YJ had moved that tree so that the go-around is no longer blocked. The 3rd vehicle in the group did drive the go-around!

Fortunately, all of the damage was done at hood height and above. It did take out the windshield and damaged the frame. There was some other damage but it was minor. No person was in the vehicle when it happened. Molly, my Australian Sheperd, was in the back. She got right out, seemed to be fine, and hopped right back in when it was time to go. This picture shows me cleaning up after the altercation.

We did drive it home. It took two weeks to repair the damage. We took it to the windshield shop yesterday and picked it up today.

Now it is ready for more trails. We are planning on taking it up to the mountains for a weekend of camping and trail running this weekend. Well, OK, not trail running for everyone but definitely for me. One trail that I want to run is Mount Antero. It becomes a single lane shelf road that climbs to 14,269 feet in elevation. The trail ends in a parking area at 13,800′ and you get to walk the rest of the way. Look forward to pictures next week!

You can learn about it here – Mount Antero.

What is everyone else planning on doing this weekend?


The Manti LaSal Mountains loom large over the city of Moab.

It was a lot of fun. I ran every day. As the Jeeps would follow the trail I would run alongside (or ahead or a bit behind).
These pictures are from the first day when we took the Moab Rim trail.

I ran up and down that very steep incline from the Kane Creek road to the Mesa top. The Jeeps were negotiating some precarious rock face obstacles mere inches from the edge. We had our first incident that day. One Jeep was coming down a steep that caused the Jeep to camber to the point of unbalance. I was able to hop on the back bumper (along with two other people) and keep it from flopping on its side.

The scenery here is just amazing. There is so much to see and do. There are two national parks. Arches and Canyonlands. There are hiking, biking and Jeep trails all over the area. You can rent many vehicles, or get a shuttle service to drop you off and pick you up. I ran the following trails during my time there this last week.
Saturday – Fins n Things
Sunday – Moab Rim
Monday – Poison Spider, Golden Spike & Gold Bar Rim.
Tuesday – Hell’s Revenge
Wednesday – Behind The Rocks
Thursday – Cliff Hanger
Friday – Klondike Bluffs, Glenwood Canyon


The group was finishing lunch as I ran ahead to the Launchpad obstacle on the Golden Spike trail. On Golden Spike, one of the Jeeps negotiated a steep step incorrectly and rolled their vehicle (360 degrees). He was able to drive it out, but it did sustain some major damage (windshield, back window, roof, hood and door damage). Later on the same trail system, another rig sheared off his lug bolts on his driver side rear tire. He said he knew that something was wrong as he watched his tire just fall over in his mirror. They pulled off his other rear tire, popped out 3 of the 6 lug bolts, installed them on the other side and drove it out (slowly and carefully).


Friday was a great day running. I ran the Klondike Bluffs trail in the morning from Highway 191 to the slickrock. It was cooler weather but not so cool that you had to bundle up. There were bicycle shuttles and Mountain Bikers all over the place. Many of them commented that I was faster than they were. Now that is affirming!!!

I-70 goes through Glenwood Canyon between Dotsero, Colorado and Glenwood Springs, Colorado. It is a beautiful canyon that ended up being the last finished portion of the national interstate highway system. It is deep and was treacherous to build in. To take advantage of the natural sights and beauty of this trail there is an exercise trail that runs the length. I ran part of that in the afternoon.


I had two runs that were my favorites of the week. My favorite was Cliff Hanger. This picture is of the Jeep group for that day sitting on the edge of the cliff. I ran the entire trail from the final overlook to the beginning of the trail. The Jeeps were slow in their negotiation of the trail, so I ran back up to meet them! There is a real sensation of splendor and exuberance in realizing that you are experiencing this country in a way that only a runner can experience!

The other was Behind The Rocks. I ran for mile after mile feeling wonderful as the miles flew by under my feet and experiencing the kind of scenery that red rock country can give to a person.

I would like to explain how I ran. First of all, you will be able to see that I don’t always have water with me. I did not need to carry it as my Shuttle service were always within a mile of me. I never went more than 5 feet off of the trail (unless everyone was together). That was for safety. If anything happened to me, they would be able to find me as they came along. The situation worked out great for me! Next year, we’ll take the FRS radios. I have one that is a wrist watch and easy to carry. Remember to be safe back-country.

I was referred to at one point as the “Trail Bloodhound.” Trails are not always marked as clearly as they could be. On Behind The Rocks, after the “White Knuckle Hill” obstacle (a vertical drop of about 6 feet). The group took what appeared to be the trail but it abruptly petered out. We back-tracked but lost the trail again. Kiddingly, over the CB radio, one of the drivers said to send Charlie, the trail bloodhound out. I ran out to an edge and sighted the trail on the valley floor. I back-tracked it to a series of “difficult access ledges” and we were soon on our way out of the back-country.

Of course, as these things go, I ended up being called the Trail Dog. It emulates those with dogs that have them run alongside their rig. Oh well!!