Monday, September 6, 2010

A big fall

I'm not gonna lie, that elevation profile is intimidating. I've got not clue if I am even ready for a race like this, but constantly dreaming about doing it over the past 2 years has forced me to give it a go in less than 3 weeks. I feel strong. Have done runs of up to 14,000 ft of elevation gain. Those were only around 28 or 30 miles (lame I know), and only half of the total elevation gain of this race. Adding more fun to matters is the 12 hrs of night-running I'll be doing. I tasted a bit of this a few nights ago running down from the Ruby Range, and after an hour I was thinking that there was no way I could do 11 more like that, without losing the course and without losing my mind...

Once I finish with that silliness, and as soon as I can walk, it'll be time to tackle 730+ miles of this:

I've got 109 detailed maps printed of the route. The guidebook, which covers about 2/3 of the trail divided into 3 sections for maildrops. New pack. New tarp. New trekking poles. New GPS (gasp!).

My hope is that this trail will push me in ways that other trails haven't pushed me before. In the past I've done long hikes with navigational struggles with other people. This time I will only have myself to rely on, and I've improved my map and compass skills to the point that I do trust myself. The trail promises to be remote and offer solitude and a wild feeling that so many other hikes in the lower 48 can't always give.. And then there's the bushwacking in those lonely and underused wilderness trails...

Hopefully I'll get online once a week for 5 weeks until I finish this trail to upload a few pictures of the beauty of NM and AZ, as well as a few poorly-writted words. First there are peaks to bag, aspen leaves to turn yellow and be seen, trails to run, and 800 miles to hitchhike toward Logan, UT, and another 800 to Albequerque. Epic hitching and living for sure...


  1. You and your endurance running. I don't know how you do it. I can walk all day long and then some but that whole running thing just doesn't sound appetizing.

    Stoked to see you'll be giving the GET a go though. Blisterfree has facilitated on hell of a trail down there and I look forward to hiking it some winter as well. I see you'll be rocking a new pack and tarp, eh? Not going to hike the GET with only a ULA Amp?

  2. No ULA amp this go round. Ever since hiking huge chunks of the Hayduke last year, I've decided that some sort of frame is quite beneficial. Now I'm rocking a ULA Ohm, which I think is the perfect compromise for water carries and 6 days of food. Also going a bit overboard with a MLD Trailstar...but I love that thing!

  3. Don't fall into the Skurka trap. Let other people decide how epic you are. You, just do and report. Besides, the real epic is in the mind and can't be conveyed. Now go on and have one, an epic journey I mean.