Despite [url=http://www.trifuel.com/forum/22157/rr-mud-mud-mud-snow-also-mud]previous protestations to the contrary,[/url] I did in fact run a trail race again. And I'm glad I did.
So, the Continental Divide Trail Race (the Eastern continental divide, not the Western. Did you know there were two? Me neither.) is the USATF 10 km Trail championships. They have prize money and everything. But your regular old joe runner can register too. So on the one hand you have these really speedy trail runners. And on the other hand you have, well, me. : )
And I do mean speedy. They were doing introductions for some of the fast runners pre-race. A lot of the men had mile PRs in the low 4:00s. There was a woman with a 4:33 mile PR. Some guy was introduced as the 11 time masters champ (I forget in what area).
So, this is the Elevation Profile. Granted, it's not Pikes Peak or anything - but I found it plenty challenging. There was only one section of switchbacks and it was a descent. So if you were going up, you were going UP!
It starts out in a beautiful meadow. Wildflowers. Butterflies the width of my palm.
About 80-85% of the course is single track. I'm not trail runner-y enough to parse the difference between technical, primitive and just regular old trail. But I think technical with a smattering of primitive would be a fair description.
It was very well marked. And there were trail marshals throughout the course to make sure you didn't miss a turn.
I spent a lot of the course laughing. I would get to some enormous hill or crazy descent and think, "You have got to be kidding me!" And then 10 minutes later there would be something even harder.
So, this section (the photo doesn't really do it justice) was somewhere around mile 5 or 5 1/2. As I was climbing up on all fours I heard a voice encouraging me. I was laughing again. I couldn't see him because I was trying to climb up the rocks. Anyhow, the unseen man said, "You've got the right idea. It's so hard it's ridiculous." And I replied, "Why don't they have the race photographer here!" And then when I got to the top I could see that he was the race photographer. : )
My time was 1:30. Now I am slow, but I am not that slow. The top men and women's time were 41:59 and 52:04 respectively.
My goals were: 1. Don't get injured 2. Have fun and 3. Finish. I figured if I took care of 1 and 2 that 3 would take care of itself. So mission accomplished.
Anyhow it was a great race. Definitely check it out if you are anywhere near the area next year.
Here's the [url=http://www.continentaldividetrailrace.com/Welcome.html]race site[/url].