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13 triplogs

Feb 27 2013
currovivorideo
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 Photos 29
 Triplogs 13

male
 Joined Mar 05 2012
 Logan, Utah
Brown's PeakPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Run/Jog avatar Feb 27 2013
currovivorideo
Run/Jog8.20 Miles 3,064 AEG
Run/Jog8.20 Miles   2 Hrs   40 Mns   3.08 mph
3,064 ft AEG
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Been a long time since I logged a trip on here, too busy out hiking! I flew into Sky harbor Monday night and camped out somewhere along road 143 heading up to the Four Peaks trailhead. I got an early start on this one since I had three hikes planned for today and this would be the hardest with the climbing and snow.

It was 38 at the start in the morning but I knew it would warm up quick since it was a crystal clear day and Iw ould be going fast as well. I started a few miles down the road so I could warm up in the sun before hitting the trail. When I got to Brown's Trail I could see that this would be a snow run! Luckily a few people had gone before me and I could use their steps. The view up here was amazing. I had footprints to follow so someone was crazier than me. But when I reached the boulder scree to get up the peak the footprints were gone and the snow was waist deep in the chute so I climbed mostly along the west face to get up. It was some of the hardest hand climbing I've done, ice everywhere, and I had to go all over that face to get up since I had no ropes. My pic of my GPS track on Google Earth shows how much work it took to go up and down the peak.

After getting back down and kissing the ground, I drove over to Fountain Hills and got in some good mountain running along the hills west of the city. I have no idea what they are called, but the Sonoran Trail took me to the Southernmost one and then I worked my way along the ridgeline to the one with towers. Steep hills, but warm! 22 miles of trails today, dawn to dusk..
_____________________
All men dream but not equally. Those who dream by night, in the dusty recesses of their minds awake in the day to find it is vanity. The dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act their dreams with open eyes and make them reality.
Apr 13 2012
currovivorideo
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 Photos 29
 Triplogs 13

male
 Joined Mar 05 2012
 Logan, Utah
Bonneville Shoreline Trail, UT 
Bonneville Shoreline Trail, UT
 
Hiking avatar Apr 13 2012
currovivorideo
Hiking4.00 Miles 1,265 AEG
Hiking4.00 Miles   2 Hrs   12 Mns   1.82 mph
1,265 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Nice morning hike along the Shoreline trail up towards Mt. Logan, Utah
_____________________
All men dream but not equally. Those who dream by night, in the dusty recesses of their minds awake in the day to find it is vanity. The dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act their dreams with open eyes and make them reality.
Apr 07 2012
currovivorideo
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 Photos 29
 Triplogs 13

male
 Joined Mar 05 2012
 Logan, Utah
Striders Wasatch Mountain Half Marathon, UT 
Striders Wasatch Mountain Half Marathon, UT
 
Run/Jog avatar Apr 07 2012
currovivorideo
Run/Jog13.10 Miles 440 AEG
Run/Jog13.10 Miles   1 Hour   13 Mns   47 Secs10.65 mph
440 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
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South Fork Canyon trail to Emigration road down to Red Moose Lodge, Eden, UT. Fun half up at 6,400 feet.
_____________________
All men dream but not equally. Those who dream by night, in the dusty recesses of their minds awake in the day to find it is vanity. The dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act their dreams with open eyes and make them reality.
Apr 05 2012
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 Photos 29
 Triplogs 13

male
 Joined Mar 05 2012
 Logan, Utah
Siphon Draw Mystery Canyon, AZ 
Siphon Draw Mystery Canyon, AZ
 
Run/Jog avatar Apr 05 2012
currovivorideo
Run/Jog8.40 Miles 2,900 AEG
Run/Jog8.40 Miles   2 Hrs   3 Mns   4.10 mph
2,900 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Midnight trail run/scramble up Flatiron and partway down what I'm calling Mystery canyon but working on my own name for it. Used a headlamp but eventually turned it off since the moonlight and reflection, backscatter was good enough for the run. Kind of a boulder hopper, this trail.
_____________________
All men dream but not equally. Those who dream by night, in the dusty recesses of their minds awake in the day to find it is vanity. The dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act their dreams with open eyes and make them reality.
Apr 04 2012
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 Photos 29
 Triplogs 13

male
 Joined Mar 05 2012
 Logan, Utah
Flatiron Hike - SuperstitionsPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Apr 04 2012
currovivorideo
Hiking6.40 Miles 2,780 AEG
Hiking6.40 Miles   4 Hrs      1.60 mph
2,780 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Such a beautiful evening hike. Up on the trail a bit late due to some guy hanging his car off an overpass on i60. We spent more time exploring around Siphon Draw on the hike up rather than just going straight up. Very sweet night and glad I was up here with someone else to share it. Lots of bats out, a full moon just peeking over the Ridgeline, and a couple of owls hooting at each other across the Draw as we descended down. Spooky!
_____________________
All men dream but not equally. Those who dream by night, in the dusty recesses of their minds awake in the day to find it is vanity. The dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act their dreams with open eyes and make them reality.
1 archive
Apr 04 2012
currovivorideo
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 Photos 29
 Triplogs 13

male
 Joined Mar 05 2012
 Logan, Utah
Bonneville Shoreline Mt Logan, UT 
Bonneville Shoreline Mt Logan, UT
 
Run/Jog avatar Apr 04 2012
currovivorideo
Run/Jog17.00 Miles 2,346 AEG
Run/Jog17.00 Miles   2 Hrs   8 Mns   7.97 mph
2,346 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Sweet afternoon trail run along the Mt Logan trail course.
_____________________
All men dream but not equally. Those who dream by night, in the dusty recesses of their minds awake in the day to find it is vanity. The dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act their dreams with open eyes and make them reality.
Apr 02 2012
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 Photos 29
 Triplogs 13

male
 Joined Mar 05 2012
 Logan, Utah
Mojave National Preserve TrailsInland, CA
Inland, CA
Run/Jog avatar Apr 02 2012
currovivorideo
Run/Jog24.00 Miles
Run/Jog24.00 Miles   2 Hrs   46 Mns   8.67 mph
2 LBS Pack
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Out and back along Cinder Cones Trail, Mojave Preserve. I had to catch part of the road for this one since I wanted to avoid elevation for a change. Today had to be about speed, last trail run used for marathon prep. Kind of windy and dealing with the dust on the way out, pushing too hard on the way back to worry about it much. Best long run in recent memory, found the groove today. Lots of thoughts today about Micah True,a different guy when I met him years back, but always a guy I admired. Happy trails! This one's for you.
_____________________
All men dream but not equally. Those who dream by night, in the dusty recesses of their minds awake in the day to find it is vanity. The dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act their dreams with open eyes and make them reality.
Mar 31 2012
currovivorideo
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 Photos 29
 Triplogs 13

male
 Joined Mar 05 2012
 Logan, Utah
Superstition RidgelinePhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Hiking avatar Mar 31 2012
currovivorideo
Hiking12.10 Miles 4,480 AEG
Hiking12.10 Miles   9 Hrs   2 Mns   1.34 mph
4,480 ft AEG11 LBS Pack
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
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Very neat hike! We were worried about the heat and started early up Flatiron. I think it was about 7am by the time we actually got on the trail. One of the most different things today was the amount of wildlife. Almost immediately we came across three deer that headed southwest down from the trail. We also saw some very large green lizards of a kind that I have't seen yet in Arizona, but since we saw a few there must be quite a lot of them up here. birds were everywhere including one large blue one which I assume is a Blujay? I also saw a little lizard with a curled up tail. We always called those whiptails along the Mexico trails but I don't know what they are here. In the higher elevations there were several types of hawks as well. Much more wildlife than I saw in the Saguro National Park a few weeks ago.

The climb up Flatiron was crowded but not overly so. It was a well marked trail and a fun climb. It makes a difference to have some friends to hike with! We took the short detour to the overlook and then continued along the trail. The scenery up here was amazing. Everything is up and down, there are just no flat spots in the trail. The Hoodoos are fascinating to me. They look so different here. Just a strange rock formation. The trail gets a bit iffy in several locations the next 4 miles. We wandered off it a few times and had to climb back up to find it. Looking at Google Earth later I could see each false trail and I think it would be easy to get the right ones climbing the trail again. Hopefully this week I will get the chance to run this trail, although it is a pretty rocky one to do that on. It warmed up fast and I went through three water bottles which is a lot for me. The last 4 miles were without water but the trail was too nice to really notice it. We went down West Boulder Saddle which was a pretty rocky descent and by then all of us were so tired the conversation had gotten minimal! That's when the hiking gets fun, you are tired and get into the zone of just enjoying being out there.
_____________________
All men dream but not equally. Those who dream by night, in the dusty recesses of their minds awake in the day to find it is vanity. The dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act their dreams with open eyes and make them reality.
Mar 20 2012
currovivorideo
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 Photos 29
 Triplogs 13

male
 Joined Mar 05 2012
 Logan, Utah
South Mtn Park / Pima CynPhoenix, AZ
Phoenix, AZ
Run/Jog avatar Mar 20 2012
currovivorideo
Run/Jog18.30 Miles 1,500 AEG
Run/Jog18.30 Miles   3 Hrs   41 Mns   4.97 mph
1,500 ft AEG2 LBS Pack
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
I was surprised to see all the snow on the Supes flying into Phoenix last night. Much different than a weeks ago! Pretty cool for end of March! Since we got to the hotel about 8pm and had to leave early morning, I was excited to get in a night trail run. The closest hike I could find was the South Mountain Park. At three miles from the hotel it was very doable. I grabbed my headlamp and cellphone and headed out the door. I had the Pima Canyon Trailhead on my cell phone nav and got there with no problems. Someday I have to see if I can figure out how to load courses on my Garmin running watch. I stopped at a gas station just before heading into the park and grabbed some water.

There was only one car in the lot at the trailhead and I couldn't believe how many stars I could see. I looked at the map for a few minutes trying to figure out how in the world to run a trail in this area without getting lost. Just about any direction that I turned I could see a trail leading off in a different direction with my headlamp. I didn't want to run around in circles for three hours. I was hoping to catch a trail on the ridgeline and head west towards some of the higher hills. As I am looking at the trail map today, I think I got pretty lucky with the trails that I ended up on last night. It even feels familiar, like I know the area pretty good looking at the map! I would have liked to reach more of the eastern parts of the area though.

I started out towards the hills I could see facing the city. I swear the markers were alternately marked East Loop and West Loop. It was nuts and in the dark I was beginning to question finding a good trail that I could return on. But pretty soon I came across a wider trail with power lines on it and figured it had to lead somewhere. The markers said Beverly Canyon. Pretty soon I saw a trail heading right that was marked ridgeline and took that since I was hoping to cut along the ridgeline east. This trail was fun and had some great views of the night city as I went along. I came to a T in the trail and took a right on Javelina but after a quarter mile or so I could tell it was looping back west so I doubled back and followed it the other direction. I finally came to National and stayed on this one until climbing up for a good view of the city just past the Geronimo trail turnoff. By now it was approaching 11pm so I figured I needed to be heading back since I counted on getting lost once or twice. But going back was pretty simple and I found that I could see the reflections of the next trail marker out ahead with the headlamp and get an idea each time of where the trail was heading before running it. I didn't miss the other turns again until just about to the trailhead, where somehow I ended up on East Loop instead of West Loop in a basin and noticed that I was rounding the hill that I saw to the north of me when I reached the trailhead earlier. I cut across heading west along a trail until I reached a development and could see that resort/casino. From there it was easy to get back to the hotel. Very nice night trail run and I actually had a sweater with a hood on the whole time. I thought it would be a bit warmer in March!
_____________________
All men dream but not equally. Those who dream by night, in the dusty recesses of their minds awake in the day to find it is vanity. The dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act their dreams with open eyes and make them reality.
Mar 19 2012
currovivorideo
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 Photos 29
 Triplogs 13

male
 Joined Mar 05 2012
 Logan, Utah
Mt Naomi Peak National Recreation Trail #005Northern, UT
Northern, UT
XC Skiing avatar Mar 19 2012
currovivorideo
XC Skiing18.40 Miles 3,980 AEG
XC Skiing18.40 Miles   3 Hrs   46 Mns   4.88 mph
3,980 ft AEG15 LBS Pack
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Due to the Jetstream being so far south this week we got 8 inches of powder in the mountains last night. It was a rare chance for some good spring cross country skiing. It was a good day to set life aside and spend time in the mountains. Although there was a broken cloud layer only, the pressure was on a slow drop and there was a cell on the radar in western Utah slowly moving east. With a temp/dewpoint spread at my house of 34/23, I roughly figured the cloud base level would be at about 9,500 feet, which should let me reach any of the higher peaks in the Bear River range before dealing with low vis. I decided to ski from Bear Creek to the Tony Grove trail, following it up to the lake and then ascend Naomi peak. I wanted to make good time on this long and steep trail since it was secondarily replacing a long training run for a marathon coming up. The weather also meant that I would have to carry a heavier pack with extra clothing layers and contingency equip. I had a new set of light skis and debated carrying along snowshoes as well, but eventually just decided to chance it with just the cross country skis.

Starting out at Bear Creek I had no trail to follow, just aiming at the three peaks that I knew were in front of Tony Grove. It was virgin powder over about 4 feet of old snow, just a beautiful day and I was able to start off in just a t-shirt. As I headed up through the aspens I immediately was climbing the first mountain and began to question not having the snowshoes but when I tacked across it became very manageable and I got a good pace going. Skiing is such a different way to travel. I've climbed the trails here since I was little, but I always enjoy the skiing more. There is nothing like simply aiming where you want to go and traveling over all the brush on top of the snow. The sun was out and with the snow layer it was tombstone quiet. After about three miles, somewhere around 6,500 feet, I had to get the second layer out. Some gusts would pick up every now and then and whip the new powder into mini storms that would just cover me. I came across the trail to Tony Grove Lake and turned north on it. Now I could really pick it up on the flat trail and was back on familiar ground. When I came up to the 7,500 foot line and the more gradual couple of miles to the lake, the wind really picked up and I had to pull my hood down and bow into it for a while. I kept the skis perpendicular to the ridges on the snow in front of me and kept as good a pace as I could, knowing that I would be in the lee of the mountains around the lake and have some shelter. The sun was blazing again now. I made my first stop at the lake and pulled out some quick lunch in a little cove around some trees. I got cold fast and just about called it a day right there since it hit so hard. As I crossed the lake towards the last climb I could see the mountain was now in the clouds. I was soon in it and really didn't get warm the last 1,500 feet despite three layers. There wasn't much to see and I was too cold to stay even a few minutes at the top, so I headed right back down.

Now crossing the lake, the wind was at my back and when the sun came out I warmed up within just a few minutes and was making good time again. Reaching about the 7,500 elevation it was so nice that I went back to single layer and started getting some pictures again. The last 5 miles were just plain fun.
_____________________
All men dream but not equally. Those who dream by night, in the dusty recesses of their minds awake in the day to find it is vanity. The dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act their dreams with open eyes and make them reality.
Mar 15 2012
currovivorideo
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 Photos 29
 Triplogs 13

male
 Joined Mar 05 2012
 Logan, Utah
Tanque Verde PeakTucson, AZ
Tucson, AZ
Run/Jog avatar Mar 15 2012
currovivorideo
Run/Jog17.00 Miles 4,686 AEG
Run/Jog17.00 Miles   3 Hrs   18 Mns   5.15 mph
4,686 ft AEG2 LBS Pack
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
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:) With only a half day on this overnight in Tucson I had to pick a trail close to the airport and one that looked challenging, but maintained well enough to run. Thanks to Joe Bartels for a great trip report which I used to get to the trailhead and plan the hike. It pretty much made the morning possible. The Tanque Verde Ridge trail up to the peak looked like a steep climb with some great views all around. I would have liked to hike Mica Peak today, but just didn't have the time. I grabbed a rental car across the street from the hotel and was at the trailhead by 7:30am. With the mileage, elevation gain, trail conditions, and with temperature about 55F, I set return time of four hours. I put some water bags, fig newtons, and my phone in my pocket and got running.

The trail wandered about for a mile or so and immediately I was just taken in by how incredible the country here is. I am struck every time I hike these areas how different a feel it is than any other trails in the world. It just never gets old. I also was surprised today how much wildlife was out. I could see the ridge line ahead where the trail was supposed to climb up and it looked pretty steep. As I climbed there were a lot of forks in the trail and I took one about 3500' which turned out to be a knoll with views of the South and East valleys. Then the trail began in earnest and didn't seem to let up for a long time! The time just flew by with so much to look at and I almost missed my one hour water stop. The trail led into some grassy areas now and leveled off quite a bit. I was able to pick up the pace a bit and start making some time that I had lost looking around and taking pictures. I climbed another good hill and entered into a rocky basin. The trail here forked a lot and I quickly learned to always take the left choice. The right just seemed to be around obstacles etc. Thankfully, it was also one of the best marked cairn trails, which can be hard to follow if you are running. I also saw a few orange stakes here and there in the ground. The sun was now rising as was the temperature but it was really a perfect day for a trail run. I passed the first hikers of the day just before entering the Juniper Basin. Suddenly it seemed that the whole trail had changed. I was now in the shade and the Juniper forest here was so different.

The trail was different as well, with a lot of soft dirt and good shade. It was surprising to be surrounded by so many trees. I'm in Arizona, after all! The stone steps and pinion reminded me of the higher elevations of the North Rim trails of the Grand Canyon. The trail then leveled off and was marked by metal things in the trees which I was unfamiliar with, but soon got used to. The view of the mountains to the North and East was beautiful. The only one I knew was Mica. I then started climbing again over large patches of rock marked very well again by cairns and saw my first rabbit of the day. My GPS was showing about 6500' and I decided with my supply of water and the time remaining I better just bag Tanque Verde Peak and head back down. The trail leveled off again for a bit and then did one last hard climb up on top. I had just about enough time to look around, take some pics, drink the last water and head back down. It took 1:54 to reach the top and from past steep trail runs I knew that I usually halved the time going down. This proved to not be the case today as the trail twisted, turned and was so rocky, that I had to be much more careful going down. At about 3 miles from the trailhead a lot of hiking groups began to appear and I stopped several times to talk to hikers that were just too friendly to pass up.

In overview, tt seems that the elevation on this trail is mostly gained in the first 3 miles and at the end, with some fun hiking in the middle. This is not a straight trail at all, as it may appear on trail maps. There are dozens of 90s and 180s. It's a challenge for a trail runner since it's hard to reach a rhythm, but a beautiful hike! :)
_____________________
All men dream but not equally. Those who dream by night, in the dusty recesses of their minds awake in the day to find it is vanity. The dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act their dreams with open eyes and make them reality.
Feb 11 2012
currovivorideo
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 Photos 29
 Triplogs 13

male
 Joined Mar 05 2012
 Logan, Utah
Arizona, USA
Arizona, USA
Hiking avatar Feb 11 2012
currovivorideo
Hiking5.80 Miles
Hiking5.80 Miles   5 Hrs   32 Mns   1.05 mph
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
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More on this hike later. Afternoon hike with my two girls, ages 6 and 9. They did excellent and really enjoyed the hike. The loved the little side excursions to overlooks. I though it would be a bit far to hike but they didn't seem too wore out by it!
_____________________
All men dream but not equally. Those who dream by night, in the dusty recesses of their minds awake in the day to find it is vanity. The dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act their dreams with open eyes and make them reality.
Oct 22 2011
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 Photos 29
 Triplogs 13

male
 Joined Mar 05 2012
 Logan, Utah
Grand Canyon North Rim to South Rim and, AZ 
Grand Canyon North Rim to South Rim and, AZ
 
Run/Jog avatar Oct 22 2011
currovivorideo
Run/Jog51.00 Miles 22,200 AEG
Run/Jog51.00 Miles   11 Hrs   45 Mns   4.34 mph
22,200 ft AEG4 LBS Pack
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Brand new to this forum and starting a few trip logs. I welcome any comments on how to do this!

Rob and I wanted to bag a R2R2R in a day and headed down to the North Rim with the kids. Amazing experience! Can't wait to do this again! Coming off of four marathons this summer, I knew that I had the endurance, but no idea of how to prepare for trail distance of this kind. The strongest lesson I gained from this was how much it matters who you run a trail like this with. Rob's knowledge of running and his planning carried me right through my first distance trail run. Since you will be spending a lot of time with each other it also helps just to have a good guy along.. :)

I threw the kids in the motorhome and we stopped in Salt Lake to pick up Rob and his family. It was just as important to me as the run itself that my kids have a great trip and Rob's wife enjoys the time as well. I was amazed that Rob's wife drove a 40 foot coach nearly half of the distance down and back, gassed it up, fed and cooked for all of us and spent such quality time with the kids Saturday. My kids can't stop talking about this quick trip to the Grand Canyon even though they have been here before. We arrived at the national park just as the sun set and found that things were shutting down for the season a bit earlier than expected. Then pulling into the Kaibob trailhead we discovered that vehicles over 22 feet were not allowed to overnight. This meant that we would have to camp at the North Rim campground and would need to run the 1.5 miles to the trailhead to start the run and then back. The advantage was that the kids would be in a beautiful campground for the day we were running and be closer to everything. I think that turned out for the better. We made camp, started a fire, ate dinner, and the kids played around the campground while we started setting up our gear for the run.

We agreed that if we both woke up early we would just get going whatever time it was. I got a little sleep and was up about 2:30am. Rob was already up and took a hot shower, ate some breakfast and brewed some coffee, which I questioned was a proper start for an ultra runner but being new to the sport I let it go. I drank two Mt. Dews and wished for the hundreth time I had put a fountain drink dispenser in the RV like my son asked me to. It takes a lot to pack up food to run for 12 hours and my pockets were jammed. After reviewing the water along the route with Rob and looking at the forcast temperatures, I decided that a Nathan fanny pack style water belt would suffice and we headed out. I could see my breath as we cruised down the road to the trail and my hands quickly froze inspite of cotton gloves. There were millions of stars out and I wished I could turn my headlamp off to look at them all. I had on a new pair of Brooks True Grit trail shoes which felt more like socks than shoes-pretty minimalistic. I was wondering how my feet would feel in them by the end of the day. We started down the Kaibob trail with our headlamps and it was like running for the first time for me. Hard to describe. Just surreal. Beautiful suroundings, awesome trail and wondering the whole time if you can make a run like this. I wrecked pretty quick and a good one, and then a few more minor falls in the next few hours before I began to get my footing. But I had a great time talking with Rob about whatever came up and the early miles just flew by. With water about every 3-5 miles down the North Rim I soon felt I was drinking way too much. We stopped in Cottonwood campground but I had so much water that I just cruised by. From Cottonwood to the river was about 7 miles and I don't recall any water in this section. I ran out here going both directions. We passed a few other R2R2R runners through these areas, a 60 year old and his wife celebrating their anniversary and a solitary runner. It was neat to stop for a minute, talk to them, and tell them we would see them on the way back! Coming up to Phantom Ranch it was getting light and we stowed the headlamps and took a quick break. I was excited to start on some hill climbing. The temp was perfect, maybe 75 degrees as we passed through Indian Gardens about halfway between the river and the South Rim. Now we began to see occasional hiking groups and I think Rob talked to almost all of them. That would change in the evening to just a passing grunt. The climb up was just fun. Occasionally we had to switch to a brisk hike from a run up the steep, stepped log sections. Rob and I argued all the way about what felt better or saved the most energy. I just can't do that power hiking stuff. It feels much harder on my knees. Within a few miles of the top the tourist traffic picked up and we passed a mule train coming down. There were quite a few people who recognized what we were doing and even a few that stopped and congradulated us on the way up. It was at the top, 25.5 miles on my Garmin (which promptly died) and around 5.5 hours into the day, that I realized for the first time that I would be able to do the whole thing. My legs felt better than they had starting out. I hung my stinking socks and shoes in a bush outside the visitors center while we rested for a few minutes. Since I can't usually stand Gu or power anything I went inside and made a peanut butter and banana sandwhich which had to be the best I ever had. As I was getting my shoes back on for the run back a guy came over to talk to me. "You must have ran to the bottom and back", he said, "I remember doing that years back when I was in shape and it was the hardest 9 miles I'd ever done". It was hard to not tell him we came from the North Rim.

Getting going again to head back across was tough. I was a lot more tired than I thought. It hurt. I was surprised on this trail that you were slower on the steep sections down than the flat. I started to look forward to flat parts of the trail. Now we also had to work around more hikers as the day was warming up and it was the weekend. One really fit lady coming back from Ribbon Falls campground stopped us to tell us how it was her dream to do a R2R2R some day. Another two women actually stopped and clapped as we ran by. I think all of this type of reaction comes as a result of running with Rob. It's one of the reasons I still hang with him. Coming down Devil's Corkscrew (I think), a ranger in a tatooine desert outfit was talking to a hiker in the elbow of a switchback, blocking the trail. I jumped down to the lower trail to avoid them and not lose rythm again. She went ballistic, yelling at the runner in the yellow shirt to stop immediately or she was going to run me down, waving those ski poles all over that everyone carries along nowdays hiking. :-) She came up in my face demanding identification while I was apologizing, still not knowing for sure what was going on. I kind of wanted to see if she could actually catch me, but Rob stood behind me whispering to just say OK so we could get on with it. She really went off on the evils of trail runners, especially R2R2R types, and I apologize to all you trail runners out there contributing to the bad image. Do NOT jump down to the lower track!

When we crossed the Colorado and came into Phantom Ranch again, about 35 miles I think since my Garmin was dead weight, it had warmed up to about 90 degrees. The bottoms of my feet hurt, but somehow all the aches and fatigue had dissapeared. Rob was like a machine with an even pace, just pulling me along from the front. I felt every now and then we should go faster but as the last 6 miles were to show that would have been a show stopper. He reminded me to drink and take S-Caps and kept us steady. The only real break here, besides enjoying the scenery that we couldn't see in the dark going the other way, was when Rob hit a rock in front of a pair of hikers and bit it, a real train wreck, spread-eagle on the trail and one of the guys was literally begging to use his first aid kit on him. He jumped up and we cruised on. That long stretch coming out of Phantom Ranch took my water fast and it was great to reach Cottonwood campground again. We passed some of the earlier runners going the other direction and could see that we were making much better time than they were. I had a hard time getting going after a short break and even then quickly felt the strength returning. About this time my nose started bleeding for about an hour, just a small steady trickle. Probably the dry air or the change in temp as we began running up the North incline. I quickly forgot about it when we hit the serious switchbacks up the North Rim. There is no other way to describe how hard those 5 miles were than relentless. Like a never ending staircase. Rob kept us running at every semi-level part of the trail, but otherwise it was like a crawl. I wondered once or twice if I would even finish it if Rob wasn't there in front of me just soldiering on. I was convinced we were at the top at least 5 times before we actually were. The dumbest things on earth were funny. It was amazing to reach the top and look back down into the canyon where we had come from and across to the South Rim.

The kids were roasting marshmellows when we ran into the campground and were shouting about the awesome day they had spent hiking and exploring with Rob's wife. I was as thankful of that as anything that day. We kicked back, watched a movie and got some sleep.

Today I can't stop thinking how grateful I am for this sport, good friends, my family, and work that lets me do these things. My parents never had this chance. It's like the perfect storm, but for running. To be fit, to have the means, to have friends as fit as you are, to live here, and to have family that loves it all is opportunity that few have.
_____________________
All men dream but not equally. Those who dream by night, in the dusty recesses of their minds awake in the day to find it is vanity. The dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act their dreams with open eyes and make them reality.
average hiking speed 1.45 mph

WARNING! Hiking and outdoor related sports can be dangerous. Be responsible and prepare for the trip. Study the area you are entering and plan accordingly. Dress for the current and unexpected weather changes. Take plenty of water. Never go alone. Make an itinerary with your plan(s), route(s), destination(s) and expected return time. Give your itinerary to trusted family and/or friends.

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