Saturday, June 26, 2010

Wasatch 17

Jami is a runner. She is motivated by running fast. Me? I'm a sorta runner. I am motivated by--well, I'm not sure yet. Maybe endorphins or maybe suffering? But I like it.

For some unknown reason, I've wanted to do the Wasatch 100. It is really impressive that people can run that far over such difficult terrain. It is all very inspiring to me. Maybe sometime I'll try it. MAYBE. I've had a lot of fun trail running the last couple of years and this year I decided it would be fun to run the race course in manageable 20-25 mile chunks just as a litmus test to see how tough I am and whether or not I could pull something like that off if I wanted to.

I have always been a very recreational runner, but with my new renewed interest in ski touring, I thought running would be a good way to get stronger for my winter activities. Also, it provides a good opportunity to do some recon and see if there are good ski lines to be had.

At any rate, I started at East Mountain Wilderness Park at 5a after stashing my bike at the bottom of Bair Canyon and headed off. The Great Western Trail is awesome. It climbs and climbs and climbs with views of the valley the whole way. Everyone once in a while I'd look down and notice that I was gaining altitude. It was awesome seeing the sunrise and mountain shadows stretch across the valley as the sun did it morning yawns before doing its business in scorching the desert earth.

Up at 9k feet, spring is just starting it seems. Buds were starting to appear and grasses peeking up out of the thawing dirt. I picked my way over the trail below Thurston Peak. I detoured up to the top of Thurston Peak(highest point in Davis County) to check out the view. I took a minute to stuff some snow into my camelbak as I was already running low on water and headed back down to catch the trail again.

Proof that I made it to the top.

View looking South from Thurston.

Eventually I ended up at the top of Bair Canyon and it was time to tenderize my quads and blow out my knees by dropping approximately 5,000 feet in 4 miles. Ouch! Picked up the bike at the bottom and rode back to the trail head to get the car. All in all a fun day.

Stats according to Garmin:

Ascent: 7,316
Descent: 7,427
Miles covered: 17 running, 5 on a bike.
Time: 4:30. Someone else go run it and tell me if I'm fast or slow.