Monday, February 18, 2008

Moab Red Hot 50K+

This weekend Kyle, Jocelyn, and I drove out to stunning southeastern Utah to enjoy the desert weather and do some running amidst the surreal red rock landscape. Simply put, no matter the time of year, it's hard to resist the allure of Moab's canyon country.
I had missed the Rocky Raccoon 100 because of needing to take three weeks completely off from running to heal a shin injury, but with a week of incredibly helpful treatment from the folks at Champion Health and two solid weeks of running under my belt I felt ready enough to go put in a sub-maximal 34 mile effort with Kyle. Much to race director Chris Martinez's credit, he allowed me entry less than a week before the race. I was number 295 at the packet pick-up, so I'm guessing that approximately that number of people started the race. That shows astonishing popularity for a race that is only in its second year.

The entrants list revealed a solid field on both the men's and women's side. Karl was back to defend last year's win, as was a much more fit version of last year's runner-up, Torrid Torrence. Additionally, Steamboat 50 mile champion (and former CU All-American) Zeke Tiernan and Leadville 100 top-10 finishers Charles Corfield and Duncan Callahan rounded out the field.

For the women, 8th place finisher in the 2004 women's Olympic Marathon Trials Susanna Beck probably sported the quickest marathon PR in the entire 50K field with a 2:34. Such road talent was backed by considerable trail experience in savvy mountain runner Anita Ortiz, defending champion Darcy Africa, veteran trail racers Emily Baer and Helen Cospolich, Wasatch 100 champ Liz Irvine, Leadville 100 champ Tammy Stone, and Leadville 100 runner-up Michele Jensen. Wow. That's quite the depth for such an early-season race.

The Red Hot course is quite unique. It consists of a run through a gorgeous canyon wash, a rolling lollipop loop on top of a mesa, some challenging climbing and descending on pure slickrock on Poison Spider Mesa, and then finally a screaming descent to the Poison Spider Trailhead on Potash Road on the Colorado River. All in all, it climbs ~4500', almost all of that in the first 25 miles or so. Throw in some moderate altitude (between 4000' and 5000'), the two dominant surfaces of loose sand and cement-like slickrock, and you have a challenging bit of trail racing.

Just as the desert sun rose, we all took off from the Gemini Bridges Road starting line and attacked the initial icy climb part way up the mesa. Kyle and I set a quick pace right from the start. We were most concerned about Zeke Tiernan's short distance speed because he was largely an untested unknown in trail ultras. Karl stayed close through the first couple of miles of climb and then descent, but once the track flattened out in the bottom of the canyon our quick pace soon whittled away everyone but Zeke.

At this point, the pace definitely felt quick and certainly not maintainable but I think pride got the better of Kyle and I. I'm sure Zeke would've followed whatever pace we set, but I think we both mostly wanted to be rid of any company as soon as possible. With that in mind we attacked the shortish, very steep climb up out of the wash and onto the Metal Masher trail. We hit the first aid station at 5.5 miles in 35 minutes and both shed our arm warmers as we were now fully in the sun on top of the mesa. At this point, Zeke was only 100 yards or so back.

Here the course continued into a lolli-pop loop on jeep trail that was largely rolling over a mixture of soft sand and slickrock. Eventually, we climbed up to the rim of the mesa and then enjoyed a nice downhill to the 12.8 mile aid station, which we reached in 1:28. Kyle and I both grabbed a gel here. I'd taken my first gel an hour in and took the second one on the down/flat back half of he lolli-pop loop. Kyle and I kept a solid pace through this section. The effort was mostly comfortable, but we were definitely still moving.

We hit the 17 mile aid in 1:56, so were still on sub-7 pace, grabbed another gel and were on our way. At this point we decided to mellow out the pace a little because a sub-4 hr finish time seemed a little unlikely. My legs were still feeling pretty good through here, but we had a lot of climbing to do once we hopped on the Gold Bar Trail and got up on Poison Spider Mesa.

The trail here quickly turned into pure slickrock with pink flagging to show us the way. I spaced out the need to get a gel down before we tackled the technical slickrock climbing, and by time Kyle and I had crawled our way to the 22.6 mile aid in 2:36 I was at a definite low point.

However, I sucked down a gel on the descent and pretty soon things were all fun and games again. The sun was brilliant, the view across the valley to the snow-covered La Sals was magnificent, and the toughest thing was not running too close to Kyle so that we wouldn't step on each other as we picked the best line on the technical descending.
There were a few times in this section that we came to a complete stop as we searched for the next pink flag and I commented to Kyle how this race was necessarily "Euro-style" in that you basically ran the straightest line across the slickrock from flag to flag. It also got pretty warm the last hour of the race and I ended up taking two S-caps in the last hour and a half or so of the race.

We were happy to finally spot the last aid station (mile 29) from about a half mile out because we'd both drained our bottles. However, the last little bit into the station was really sandy and I started whining a bit about how vile a surface sand is to run on. After a quick fill of the bottles we departed the station at 3:28 and decided to just chill it out to the finish because it didn't seem like we had much chance of breaking 4 hours. Sub 4:10 would be fine with us today.
The next two to three miles were pretty boring, sandy, muddy, and flat jeep track running across the top of the mesa. Finally, at about 3:45 or so the road started the descent down to the Colorado River with switchbacks and a lot of those big 3-4ft rock drops that plenty of misguided folks in the Moab area think are perfect for crawling up in a Jeep. Neat.

Just after Kyle and I were commenting that "Geez, I sure wish Chris had found a way to make this race a true 50K and not 34 miles because we'd be cracking a brewski now instead of bonking and trying to decide if I want to take the trouble to suck down one last gel", when some dude in road flats came blowing by us on one of the more technical downhills.

After ascertaining that yes, indeed, this fellow was running the 50K (and not the 33K; we'd been passing dozens of 33K runners for the past 10 miles or so) Kyle and I immediately shifted gears from the dawdling, complacent eight minute pace we'd been running to a (much more painful) low five minute pace. Within a quarter mile or so we'd gapped the runner (Justin Ricks) and spent a frantic 10 minutes or so blazing down the final switchbacks to the finish line to tie in 4:03:02. We were 22 minutes under Karl's inaugural course record run from last year.

Because we'd had to run so hard to the finish, Kyle and I put in a 10 minute cool down with Jocelyn and Anna Pichrtova (relaxing after her easy 33K win) and then spent the rest of the afternoon lounging in the sun, chatting, and drinking milkshakes. A pretty great day.

20 comments:

GZ said...

Sweet report Tony. Nice job. Cool to read in there the highs and the lows you went through, including how you addressed that with nutrition. I am curious to know if you take S-caps, gels, etc on your longer training runs.

GZ said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jeremy Shearer said...

Great time Tony, I havn't had the chance to run Moab for about a decade or more, but that route has some technical spots and you guys rocked it!

Keep running...peace.

captain

ultrastevep said...

Nice report, thanks for writing it....gives us mid packers a feel of what goes on up front!
Tell Kyle I said hi!
Steve P.

Lori B said...

Great race report and congrats. Must be exciting to have a hammer that you can put down at the end of the race. I look and look for mine but it's never where I think where I left it last.

Charles said...

Very nice report Tony. It's interesting to see that you competitive types go through the same mental game as us mid-packers; just compressed into 2/3rds the elapsed time. While you were bonking at Aid #4, I was bonking at Aid #3. Moab was my first ultra and it was a great deal of fun. I can't wait to come back for more next season.

Arm Warmers said...

Great report, and chance you'll be running the race again this year?

Syaiful isma said...

Good Job, Thank you for presenting a wide variety of information that is very interesting to see in this artikle


http://www.tourkarimunjawaisland.com/
and http://jualfurniturejepara.com/
or http://www.mebeljeparafurniture.com/
and http://www.tokokaintenunjepara.com/

Syaiful isma said...

very amazing post, I like It, Thank you for presenting a wide variety of information that is very interesting to see in this artikle, good job adnd succes For you

paket karimunjawa januari |
paket karimunjawa februari |
paket karimunjawa maret |
paket karimunjawa april |
paket karimunjawa mei |
paket karimunjawa juni |
paket karimunjawa juli |
paket karimunjawa agustus |
paket karimunjawa september |
paket karimunjawa oktober |
paket karimunjawa november |
paket karimunjawa desember |
paket karimunjawa 2 hari 1 malam |
paket karimunjawa 3 hari 2 malam |
paket karimunjawa 4 hari 3 malam |
Homestay karimunjawa |
homestay karimunjawa |
homestay karimunjawa |
hotel karimunjawa |
paket hotel karimunjawa |
karimunjawa hotel |

Syaiful isma said...

I like It, Thank you for presenting a wide variety of information that is very interesting to see in this artikle, good job adnd succes For you

paket honeymoon karimunjawa |
Paket Honeymoon karimunjawa murah |
backpacker karimunjawa |
paket karimunjawa murah |
wisma apung karimunjawa |
jiwaquest resort karimunjawa |
menjangan resort karimunjawa |
nirwana resort karimunjawa |
dewadaru resort karimunjawa |
hotel escape karimunjawa |
Blue Laguna inn karimunjawa |
puri karimun jawa |
karimunjawa inn |
alchy cottage karimunjawa |
paket dIving karimunjawa |
paket murah karimunjawa |
paket rombongan karimunjawa |
paket natal dan tahun baru karimunjawa |
paket wisata karimunjawa murah |
paket natal karimunjawa |
paket tahun baru karimunjawa |
paket idul adha karimunjawa |
paket lebaran karimunjawa |
paket idul fitri karimunjawa |

Syaiful isma said...

article from a very amazing, Good Job, Thank you for presenting a wide variety of information that is very interesting to see in this artikle

paket bulan puasa karimunjawa |
taman nasional karimunjawa |
pulau karimunjawa |
cara ke karimunjawa |
jadwal trip karimunjawa |
hotel di karimunjawa |
penginapan di karimunjawa |
resort karimunjawa |
hotel di jepara |
panorama karimunjawa |
situs bawah air karimunjawa |
homestay karimunjawa |
hoemestay karimunjawa |
paket homestay karimunjawa |
homestay karimunjawa |
homestay karimunjawa |
paket diving karimunjawa |
penduduk karimunjawa |
tracking mangrov karimunjawa |
wisata di karimunjawa |
keindahan pulau karimunjawa |
place of karimunjawa |
tips berlibur karimunjawa |
indahnya karimunjawa |
pesona karimunjawa |

Syaiful isma said...

Amazing post, Thank you for presenting a wide variety of information that is very interesting to see in this artikle

karimunjawa island beauty |
puisi karimunjawa |
pulau gosong karimunjawa |
sunset ungu karimunjawa |
kapal nazi karimunjawa |
keindahan wisata karimunjawa |
pesona laut karimunjawa |
indahnya tanjung gelam karimunjawa |
wisata pulau karimunjawa |
liburan ke karimunjawa |
surga pantai karimunjawa |
hiu karimunjawa |
sunset cantik karimunjawa |
karimunjawa menakjubkan |
snorkling di karimunjawa |
agenda wisata karimunjawa
boking paket karimunjawa
tempat wisata di jepara
pantai karimunjawa
indahnya pantai karimunjawa

muh. nur Hamzawi said...

very amazing post, I like It, Thank you for presenting a wide variety of information that is very interesting to see in this artikle, good job adnd succes For you

toko kain tenun
kain tenun
sangkar burung
toko tenun ikat
paket wisata karimunjawa
paket wisata karimunjawa
paket karimunjawa
paket wisata karimunjawa
wisata karimunjawa
paket wisata karimunjawa
paket Wisata karimunjawa
toko mebel jepara
kursi jati
furniture anak
aneka tempat tidur
harga sofa ruang tamu
toko furniture jepara
harga meja makan
sofa ruang tamu
mebel jepara online
toko furniture jati
tour karimunjawa

muh. nur Hamzawi said...

article from a very amazing, Good Job, Thank you for presenting a wide variety of information that is very interesting to see in this artikle

tempat tidur minimalis
ranjang tidur anak
tempat tidur terbaru
tempat tidur
ranjang tidur jati
luxury bed sets
bed models italian
tempat tidur tingkat
tempat tidur hello kitty
tempat tidur anak bertingkat
set kamar tidur jati
set bed bayi
tempat tidur anak minimalis
set tempat tidur bayi
kamar set modern
tempat tidur coklat
dipan rahwana jati
kamar set mewah jati
kamar mewah italian
kamr set mewah model terbaru
set tempat tidur minimalis
tempat tidur minimalis
tempat tidur mewah
tempat tidur anak
kamar set mewah
meja kantor direktur
meja kantor presiden
kursi kantor ukiran
meja kantor jati
meja kantor mewah
meja kantor


muh. nur Hamzawi said...

very amazing post, I like It, Thank you for presenting a wide variety of information that is very interesting to see in this artikle, good job adnd succes For you

kursi makan mahoni
kursi makan modern
kursi makan mewah
kursi makan kayu
set kursi makan
kursi makan minimalis
meja makan mahoni
set meja makan
KURSI TAMU
sofa modern classic
kursi tamu minimalis
BUFFET
bufet besar
bufet tv minimalis
buvet tv besar
bufet ukir antik
bufet pajangan
lemari bufet
bufet jati
lemari bufet minimalis
JAM HIAS
lemari jam pajangan
jam hias jati
NAKAS
nakas duco
nakas jati
KITCHEN
kitchen set jati
set kitchen
set lemari dapur
GAZEBO
gazebo taman
GEBYOK
gebyok pelaminan
MEJA BELAJAR
meja belajar
RAK BUKU
rak buku minimalis
BANGKU
bangku ukiran jepara
bangku ukiran mewah
bangku ukiran
kursi bangku mewah

muh. nur Hamzawi said...

I like It, Thank you for presenting a wide variety of information that is very interesting to see in this artikle, good job adnd succes For you

LEMARI
lemari pakaian minimalis
lemari pakaian 3 pintu
lemari hias anak
almari arsip ukir
lemari pakaian modern
lemari pakaian 2 pintu
almari rak buku
lemari pakaian jati
lemari pakaian rahwana
lemari baju besar
lemari pakaian anak
lemari pakaian jati
lemari pakaian kecil
lemari pakaian jati
lemari hias pajangan
lemari dokumen ukiran
lemari pakaian mewah
lemari pakaian duco
lemari pakaian ukir
lemari pakaian pahatan
almari minimalis jati
almari pakaian antik
almari ukir jati
almari pakaian minimalis
almari pakaian mahoni
almari pakaian jati
almari hias jati
almari nakas minimalis
almari pajangan kaca
almari nakas
lemari nakas

muh. nur Hamzawi said...

Amazing post, Thank you for presenting a wide variety of information that is very interesting to see in this artikle

kontak furniture jepara
sample warna furniture
tentang kami furniture jepara
rute expedisi jepara
cara pemesanan furniture
almari hias ukiran
lemari rak buku
almari pakaian relief daun
almari pakaian ukiran
almari pakaian minimalis
lemari hias minimalis
lemari pakaian 4 pintu
almari hias miniamalis
almari hias mewah
almari pakaian 2 pintu
almari pajangan ukir
almari pajangan jati
almari pakaian minimalis
almari pakaian peluru
AYUNAN
kursi ayunan jati
kursi ayunan jati
kursi ayunan mewah
ayunan jati mewah
ayunan jati jepara
ayunan jati jepara
ayunan jati mewah
ayunan mewah
tempat tidur jati
meja kantor minimalis
sofa antik
sofa klasic
sofa ukir jepara

muh. nur Hamzawi said...

article from a very amazing, Good Job, Thank you for presenting a wide variety of information that is very interesting to see in this artikle

sofa luxury white
sofa antik duco
kursi singgle
sofa ukir gold
kursi ukir unik
kursi makan duco
tempat tidur jati mewah
kursi makan mahoni
kursi pimpinan
tempat tidur mewah
lemari hias
rak buku mewah
tolet mewah
lemari pakaian minimalis
kursi ratu
set tempat tidur duco
TEMPAT TIDUR
set tempat tidur |
tempat tidur |
tempat tidur |
ranjang minimalis modern |
set kamar anak |
set tempat tidur |
ranjang tingkat anak |
tempat tidur dewasa |
tempat tidur jati |
kursi makan modern |
tempat tidur coklat |
dipan rahwana |
MEJA KANTOR
meja kantor |
meja rapat jati |
meja pimpinan kantor |

muh. nur Hamzawi said...

very amazing, Good Job, Thank you for presenting a wide variety of information that is very interesting to see in this artikle

KURSI MAKAN
kursi makan |
kursi ruang makan |
kursi makan |
meja makan minimalis |
meja makan jati |
KURSI TAMU
kursi tamu |
kursi sofa mewah |
set kursi tamu klasik |
sofa bulat solid |
kursi jati jepara |
sofa tamu jati |
kursi tamu jati |
sofa klasik |
kursi raja ukir |
kursi telur |
BUFFET
bufet tv minimalis |
lemari hias |
nakas |
lemari dinding |
kitchen set |
kitchen set jati |
gazebo |
LEMARI
lemari pakaian |
almari |
almari hias |
ranjang minimalis |
lemari pajangan tv |
lemari tv putih |
lemari hias kaca |
lemari baju |
sofa keluarga antik |
kursi santai |
kursi keluarga |
gebyok pelaminan |

muh. nur Hamzawi said...

Good Job, Thank you for presenting a wide variety of information that is very interesting to see in this artikle

meja belajar |
meja belajar anak |
meja komputer minimalis |
rak buku |
lemari buku |
rak buku minimalis |
rak buku jati |
rak buku mewah |
kursi tamu |
sofa box telepon |
kursi malas jati |
sofa bed keluarga |
bangku jati minimalis |
meja rias sederhana |
meja rias antik |
meja rias ukiran jepara |
meja make up |
meja rias putih |
meja rias minimalis |
meja rias antik |
furniture anak |