Wednesday, June 10, 2009

what will runners see on the trail this year at States???

well, the big dance is almost here. the big guns are primed and ready. it will be a fun track meet to watch.

i've been on the western states 100 course a few times and even during my limited time on the course i have seen some pretty cool things...

funny, all the cool things that i've seen have been during a race when i wasn't carrying my camera... bummer. so, you will have to take my word for it.

my only races near auburn have been States and rio.

i'm far too slow to run cool .

but i might be able to finish the wildest run in the west some day. i think that would be fun.
what else did i see on that WS historical trail???

well it started in my 1st 100... yes, i ran states as my 1st 100 in '06, the nice cool year...

when i was climbing out of eldorado canyon in that nice cool 115 degrees, i saw two bear cubs 50ish feet off the trail below me. very cool. the bear cubs that is... but lets just say... not seeing mamma bear made that climb up to michigan bluff brisker than i can normally climb.

then when it was dark, after leaving HWY 49, i about ran into a skunk. i think this is where a skunk stalled a former winner in the past. stalled a top ten female this day too.
i had less than 6 miles to finish in my first 100 and what was this??? i even contemplated about getting sprayed if that is what it took. but, with father clem pacing me (i say that with utmost respect) we slowed a bit and just followed the white stripped critter for a bit down the trail. we were still moving forward. all i could think about was i going to have to throw sticks and rocks at the cute little creature like the former winner??? well, we kept running (i call it this after 94 miles) and low and behold the little bugger skirted off the trail. clem and i scooted past it and low and behold we were spared a pungent shower.

running my second rio i saw 4 turkeys, and two dear climbing up K2. pretty neato. (K2 below)

K2 skirts off the WS trail close to no hands...
but the real epic moment that "day" was seeing the cougar about 10 minutes before getting back to no-hands again (on the WS course again). scared the begeezzees out of me for sure. but very cool none the less.

on that day at rio i almost ran into a skunk again. ok, it wasn't on the WS course at this point, but after it stopped me i had to tell Mark Tanaka to slow down on his way to the finish on the second out and back. he did, and we were both spared a spray.

so, there it is. that is what i've seen on the WS trail, or close to the trail.

will the fast boys and girls notice anything? maybe not this year. everything will be a blur to them i'm sure. but for everybody else, the race might present itself as another great day to be alive on the trail.

i hope everybody enjoys the dance. it was no fun last year when the dance partner cancelled.

have fun everybody, enjoy the "music". enjoy the trail even if you are running at break neck speed.


Wednesday, May 27, 2009

ws 100 training camp

i was able to go to the western states training camp memorial day weekend. the best part was we were able to get to robinson flat (mile 29.7) for the first time in 3 years. greg asked the county to plow the road up there and they were able to do that the monday prior to camp. pretty sweet. a little snow leaving RF but that was it.
the big boys and girls took advantage of this by running from robinson to the river for a little ole' 50 mile run. two speedsters even broke loose from the pack to finish ahead of the other talented runners. wow, "the show" is going to be fun to watch this year.
above/below, heading down through the old burned out section to miller's defeat after leaving robinson flat.below, miss sparta, Stacey Bunton (second at last year's Spartatholon, 246km/153 miles from athens to sparta, in 31:25, the best ever by an american women)

pucker point above which is to my left in picture.
last chance above

on your left before heading down to the swinging bridge
swinging bridge above. a good place to douse/refill bottles after the swinging bridge if you are running in the race

devils thumb above (mile 44.7)
sweat happens in the canyons

but you can always cool off before climbing. like above in eldorado canyon before climbing up to michigan bluff
this is how close last years fire got to michigan bluff below. just feet from the first house you get to as you enter michigan bluff (below)

Scott Jurek's dog (Tonto) is buried there on Ann Trason (14 time winner) and Carl Anderson's property as you leave Michigan Bluff (below)

don't take chicken hawk road after seeing this. there is no aid at the bottom. ask lc
the second day we ran cal street.

tim twietmeyer (WS President and 5 time winner) was there at peachstone helping out
if you are running sub 24 you get to see the below in the daylight. if not, all you can do is hear the river for those 3+ hours

the racers will cross here while holding onto the rope this year because of the early snow melt. no raft crossing this year. crossing to the other side below.
i relaxed at the river then stood in it up to my waist for ten minutes to cool off, nice

the stone bench dedicated to barbra schoener who was attacked and killed by a mountain lion on april 23, 1994.

but if you want to see this in the daylight on race day, you have to be running sub 18:30. will this hold out to be top ten for the men this year??? history says yes. but this is an exceptional field this year.

top ten won't have to turn their lights on until here (or later. mile 89.9). (above) i liked the potato soup, loud music, and christmas lights here in '06
yes, that bridge is over 700 ft high with the road heading into auburn. the river... it is the "Confuence" according to O.D. don't take the short cut trail or you might get it named after you... don't take it running way too cool 50k either. you might not get a finishing time...

looking down on no hands bridge that was built 1910-1912 and the rails added in 1984. if you are running top ten maybe this year the time keeper will tell you what place you are in before leaving no hands this time... arrgghhhhh. well, they are volunteers so i shouldn't complain i guess.

Robie Point. 1.3 miles to go. you don't need to give your # here, they could care less.
the guy that owns this horse trailer has completed 34 tevis cup rides!!! jim howard passed jim king here in 1983 for a 30 second win.
the white bridge... in '06 this is where i said "the work is done" .5 miles to the finish. if ann trason says it, it can't be all that bad right?

nice to read after you finish a "days" run...

have fun to all that will be joining the "big dance" in a month

seagull junker

Monday, May 18, 2009

are you ready???

--- well, some of you have some big 100's coming up soon... are you fit???
what are some of the signs that let you know that you are ready to start racing after mile 62?

--- was it your time in that last 50 miler or 100k a few weeks ago? was it faster than last year? or did you just feel great the whole way after a 100+ mile week the week before and still posted a great time???

--- maybe you just knocked off a 100k and a 50k back to back weekends and ran faster than ever before??? then the next weekend you did almost 10,000 ft. of climbing at rooster rock dropping your pacer to cap off the day. you have to know you are fit here.

-- maybe you didn't do any races... you just hammered out a 144 mile week and felt great the last day doing a 52 miler.

--- or have you had the most high mileage weeks ever in training???

--- if you are not anton... you are now going through a pair of shoes a month (or more)?
--- or you are amazed at the weight you are dropping and still eating 5000 calories a day?

--- you notice that with the weight loss the last few weeks that you aren't starting any fires anymore with your thighs rubbing together while running. yes, less body glide to buy.

--- you now look at not entering anything less than a 50k because it just wouldn't be enough time on your feet at this stage of the game. that's right, you don't even want to know of the local 10k in your town, that just wouldn't cut it.
--- you check how much climbing you've done in the last week... 10,000-15,000 and your quads don't remind you of what you did on the downs. i'm sure the corvallis gang is on the upper limits here.

--- you look down and you smile because you only have four toenails at this stage of the game.

--- you look forward to loosing the last of them in a few weeks even if you paint them before the race.

--- for the men: or if you live in eugene (coburg, oregon too)... you might be fit for your 100.2 if you have your eye out for the best ladies shaver that will make your legs nice and smooth for your little dance coming up. shaving the arms too???

--- you go into the local mini mart and somebody notices you saying, "hey, you are the "jogger" i see EVERYDAY while driving home from work".

--- you reconfirm what the factory says about the battery life on your I-pod shuffle on your last long run... it only lasts 12 hours.

--- you've been going through your elastikon and tincture of benzoin and frantically make your next order for two more rolls and one bottle for race day.
--- you take your watch off to change the battery and you notice nice little tan lines where the watch sits on your wrist.

what tells you that you are fit?
have fun at your 100 coming up soon.
seagull junker