I posted to the local trail runners e-mail list and was happy that someone nibbled on my invite for a long run this weekend. It was a woman named Cheryl. Cheryl ran her first 50k at the North Fork races, she's preparing for her first 50 miler and also the Leadville 100. She's got a wonderful progression going on, not unlike the progression hundreds of other ultra-runners have used on her way to the 100 mile finish. She showed up at my door at 5am and we immediately took off for the trail.
It's so nice to walk out my front door and hop right onto a trail. As we started to head out for Eldorado, the sun was still rising and had yet to crest above the horizon. Just light enough to not need headlamps, we carried on casually. Cheryl and I run about the same pace so it was easy to be comfortable when turning the legs over. Though, we quickly discovered on the hills that my hill climbing stride is still a bit much for those "shorter folks" looking to keep up with me. ;) It was nice to meet someone new who was comfortable enough, not only to simply run together, but to get to know each other more personally. Cheryl has this wonderful, motherly, finesse to her that well... only a mother would have. So talking with her came easy and so did the miles we clicked off together.
As we crossed the dirt road in Superior and onto the Singletree trail, we were treated with a delightful sunrise. The sun was a monster red ball having just risen above the horizon and desperately trying to break free of the morning clouds. As we turned the corner, we watched silently as the Flat Irons turned red from the alpin-glow and the Rocky Mountain Snows in the distance did the same. Breathtaking. As the sun continued to rise and heat the land, the cool valley air turned to clouds as it began to rise and a magnificent morning overcast rose up along the sides of the mountains. I wished I was on top of Bear Peak looking down on the undercast that was. Sunrise in Boulder County had turned out to be this amazing dance of weather phenomenon that one simply could not look away from.
|Can you spot the elk?|
|Also found this dung beetle pushing a turd. :)|
The 50K run ended up taking us 6:35. Good enough for a 13:11/min mi. pace. I'm extremely happy with how well we did and how comfortable I felt. I still have much work to do to prepare for the beast that is Leadville. I'm determined to cross that finish line this year and gaining redemption. Left Right Repeat.. from here, until then.