|Let the good times roll! Photo c/o Paul Nelson|
Ken decided to join me on my adventure and signed up for both races. We stayed at McMenamins Edgefield (awesome place to stay if you have not tried it out!) in Troutdale about 13 miles from the race start. Finishing off the race party was Ken's sister and brother in law, Carrie and Roy, who joined us for the weekend to do a little 100k crewing. While Edgefield provides a wide range of fun activities to partake during your stay, with a 4AM race start, Ken and I were in bed by 9:30PM. Nope no movie, no soaking tub, and definitely no sampling at the whiskey bar, or the martini bar....just one beer from the tap house before bed! Our hopes (rather stupid I admit, McMenamins is a place to party....not sleep) of a good nights sleep were dashed with the sounds of all the jovial patrons until around midnight when we finally drifted off. Alarms sounded at 2:15 and while some guests were just making their way to their rooms, Ken was making his way to the lobby for our much needed coffee, in attempts to jump start our brains.
|Cruising into the 50k turn. Photo c/o Paul Nelson|
|Just about to the 50k turn around! |
Photo c/o Paul Nelson
The race was an out and back, same course as the 50k runners...only of course we would be running it twice. We started at Benson Park and began the long 1500ft climb up and over the trail for Wahkeena falls over to Multnomah falls...it was pitch black and while you could hear the roar of the water I wondered at times if it was better that I could not see; first because you were going straight up and in the dark you could not tell how far you had to go, second because we were warned of narrowness of the trail and to take caution. At points, should you fall...you would not be getting back up! With that in mind, I trotted along the rocky, muddy terrain with utmost caution. Ken was with me, which was nice. I was hoping that we would get to spend some good miles together. In a 100k it does not typically take long before you are running by yourself and while I knew it was going to be a long day of running I hoped to at least share his company for parts of it.
I emerged into the daylight unscathed and came into an aid station to see the smiling face of Katie Bien, she was out on the course crewing her hubby and fellow Patagonia runner Rod "Bandit" Bien. I saw Carrie and Roy at the 20 mi aid station. Carrie was taking care of Ken who came in just in front of me and I put Roy to work refilling my fluid while I ate a gel. Asked how I was doing .... "getting my ass kicked" was my response. I was staying on my feet but wow, not easy. I had not anticipated ALL the rocks and adding the mud and the wet slick moss to the combination, I was feeling completely worked earlier than I hoped. The course description advertises amazing scenery, passing by multiple falls, and moss covered hillsides, with little elves and everything....all very true and I even tried at times to take in the views but for my own safety I ended spending the majority of the time with my
eyes on the prize...the ground and not falling.
|Watch out for that....rock...Photo c/o Glen Tachiyama|
|One of the amazing falls! Photo c/o Glen Tachiyama|
|Feeling tired and looking tired|
Photo c/o Paul Nelson
Next thing I knew I was running (trotting) down the final hill. It was about 4 in the afternoon and although I did get a few odd looks from the day hikers, I think the runners in front of me pre warned them and they all graciously stepped out of my way.
|Leaping to the finish line! |
Photo c/o Bandit Bien
James Varner RD greeted me at the finish along with Ken, Carrie, Roy, Katie and Rod (M2) and all I could do was shake my head and laugh. What an amazingly tough race!!
Thank you to Rainshadow Running and RD James Varner for putting on a great race and all the volunteers who took amazing care of us crazy runners coming through the aid stations....and of course Carrie and Roy for spending 12 hours out in the cold with us :) Love you guys!
What worked well:
Roch Horton special Black Diamond lighting system
Patagonia Houdini jacket (great in the early hours and compact enough to fit in the front vest pocket)
Patagonia Cap 1 long sleeve shirt
Patagonia wool socks (wet feet most of the day and no issues)
UltrAspire Spry 1L hydration vest
What did not:
Swedish fish and Jelly beans (should have stayed with honeystinger gels and solid food earlier in the race)
Ipod not set up correctly
Next up Peterson Ridge Rumble .....