Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Wednesday, 10/06/10 Bear/S. Boulder Peak (PR)

After a few hours of holding my girls at the hospital, I was itching to get out to stretch a bit and get in a good run.  I headed over to the Cragmoor TH with no specific intentions, just get out there and see how things unfold.  It was a little after noon and the clouds parted shortly after I started and made things feel warm and a little humid, where the humidity helped a bit with the breathing.  As soon as I started up the trail I knew it was going to be a good day.  My legs felt super solid and my lungs were good, so I upped the intensity to the low side of hard.  I crossed the Mesa Trail in ~9:20ish I think, passed the slab at 13:15, Fern jct. at 14:57 and the saddle in high 24.  I knew these splits were close to PR, maybe a little behind, but my effort seemed very controlled.  I powerhiked with my hands on my knees for the upper 1,000 feet and ran some when I could, sprinting to the pole and tagged it in 37:57 and scampered the final rocks to the true summit in another :33 for a 38:30 ascent, just a few seconds shy of PR.

Anxious to get to the girls next feeding, I boogied very quick and smooth over to S. Boulder, my feet very precise and my legs not the least bit fatigued, crossing the saddle in 3:30 and tagging the summit in 9:15, certainly a PR split.  The trip back to the saddle took 3:30, then I re-crossed the summit of Bear in 7:57, another PR in that direction.  Having a complete blast with it and feeling as though I was walking on air, as if I could do no wrong, I ripped the descent, each step in perfect sync, which almost felt choreographed. 

I made the very technical, ~1,000 foot drop to the saddle in another PR of 6:57, the Shanahan/Slab junction in 12:4? and the Mesa Trail in 16:39.  I knew it would tough to beat my descent PR of 21:30 (set in January with perfect bobsled run conditions) down to Cragmoor, but I still kept pushing hard and finished in 22:55 for a 1:18:37 RT.

Though I missed my ascent PR by a very small amount, I was very pleased with the perceived effort involved and doing it with such inconsistent training, but super stoked on the remainder of the splits I put together.  More and more, I am totally into pushing the technical downhills.

Part of what made my run awesome today, was wearing a new pair of Keen test shoes (that I don't think are on the market yet).  They are a super light, minimalist trail racing flat with bomber traction/grip.  I loved the feeling of being so stable and low to the ground, but still having decent protection.  I think I am on to something (Tony, I now get it..... ;)).


  1. Nice! Did they ever do any trail work on upper Fern Canyon? I haven't been up there in months, but I remember something about that work being in the plans.


  2. Sweet. I remember that down in the snow - that was awesome.

  3. Nice running Jeff! Yeah, especially on technical stuff like Fern I think it certainly pays to have that extra nimble-ness that comes from wearing a low-profile shoe.

    Unfortunately, no work on upper Fern yet this year. It'll be interesting to see what they do if/when they get around to it. Obviously, they could make some big sweeping switchbacks a la the new stuff in Bear Canyon, but with some (very significant) rock work and retaining walls I think they could make the current route above Nebelhorn work, for the most part.