Courtney and I spent the majority of our Memorial weekend in Leadville. It was a mess trying to get everything packed and done that we needed to before heading into the high country. We got up to our campsite around 9:30 and had to set the tent up in the dark. That was fun but we’ve done it so many times it takes less than 5 minutes to have our site up and ready.
Next morning, we planned to run around the lake and up the infamous Powerline. The majority of the run was to be on the 100 mile course. Sounds good to me! It was a bit cold when we woke up so we decided to have breakfast and relax before heading out around 9. The loop should be about 16 miles with plenty of climb. We take off and have no problems getting to where we want to be but notice the 10,000′ that we’re running at is making us work pretty hard. Eventually we run by the High Mountain Institute and start running towards the inward bound side of Powerline and can’t help but marvel at the view we’re treated to of Mt. Massive in front of us.
We hit the dirt that takes us to the climb and stop for a gel. There is some construction going on at the base that makes it a little hard to run but only until the wooden fence a few hundred feet up. At this point, Court starts running pretty fast up the hill and I keep telling her to slow it down. She looks at me like I’m crazy. She says, “I just want to do it like an interval”. Ha, it’s a lot longer than you think! We talk about how no one really runs all the way up it unless it’s a shorter training run and after about 45 minutes of climbing, she understood why! There are at least 5 or more false summits on your way up and at the start, you only see two climbs. We also ran into Fuller towards the top. Always good seeing someone you know when you’re out running!
We eventually get over the top and start making our way down the course on the dirt road towards Hagerman Pass Road and eventually back down by the Turquoise Lake. At this point, we had run 12 miles and were hurting pretty bad. Good thing we had a phone and my sis was camping! After a quick call, we were picked up and on our way back. Tough stuff running at 2 miles high but we definitely got our workout in!
We settled back in at camp and waited for the rest of the crew to arrive. We cooked up some lunch after everyone got in and messed around on the slack line a bit. One of Phil and Lauren’s friends was feeling pretty sick from the altitude since she just flew in from the east coast the night before. They ended up heading back to Denver after a few hours and she wasn’t feeling any better. Bummer! Liz and Neil stayed though and Nick and Laurie came and joined us at the campsite for some fun. Let’s just say corn hole can get pretty competitive after a few drinks, right Courtney?
We woke up the next morning thinking we might try to hike Massive with Nick and Laurie but the fun the night before preemptively stopped that plan. Instead, we headed down to the lake to fish a bit before heading home. Ended up catching a decent sized rainbow trout and took one of the ones my sister caught that couldn’t be released. That meant 2 trout for dinner! Turned out great btw!
Bolder Boulder 10k
Come Monday, we had to get up by 4 to leave by 4:45 to get to the Bolder Boulder 10k! We got to the start area with plenty of time and saw a ton of friends as we were hanging out before and eventually split to get into our corrals. I got stuck in the AA wave instead of A like I should have been but after the run we had in Leadville, I wasn’t expecting as fast a time as I had originally hoped. Besides, starting a minute behind A gave me a group to chase!
Started out pretty strong but not as fast as I have in the past. Wanted to keep it pretty even today. It’s always funny at this race, people sprint out like crazy only to die a few hundred yards down. Reminds me of something my high school coach always told us about there not being medals for the first person through the 1/2 mile point, the finish is the only line that matters.
After the first kilometer we started to catch the back end of the A wavers. There was a group of 4 or 5 of us from AA that were working well and pushing hard. Just kept with them! Saw a few teammates as well and by mile 4 I finally caught up to Kircher. That was my main goal! haha. He tells me he had to stop to try and puke. Ultra runners know how to make a 10k fun! Kept on rolling at a fairly even pace and was able to push it pretty well into the stadium.
I ended up with a 37:10, just 2 seconds faster than Heather. She’s getting a little too close! ha! After crossing the line, I see a few of the teammates and head that way and hear Matt ran a 32:xx. Impressive! A few minutes later I see Andrea and hear she hit her goal as well. Everyone seemed to be having a great day! Next thing we know, Courtney is done as well, 7 minutes faster than last year and only two days after a hard run in Leadville. She’s only getting better. So much fun to watch!
We ended up hanging out at the expo for a bit and wandered around enjoying the crowd before heading home. What a way to spend the weekend!