Running race (Trails) 1:13:39  6.21 mi (11:52 / mi) +1049ft 10:13 / mi
max:170 shoes: Montrail Mt Masochist Mar 2011
Out of Bounds 10K at Bristol Mountain.
The only reason I did this race (considering the horrid weather this morning, when I was getting ready to leave) is that I had committed to trailsnail that I would do it! She had pre-registered, I hadn't, but I had given her my word that I would do the race ... so no backing out.
Fortunately, the rain had just about stopped when we arrived at Bristol, it wasn't very windy, and all in all, not a bad day for a race, weather-wise.
When I told Cheryl about this race, her reaction (summarized) was: "OK, it's a race at a downhill ski area, and the start is at the top, and the finish is at the bottom. What could be so hard about that?"
It wound up being exceptionally tough. It certainly wasn't a race from the top to the bottom, on ski slopes. Probably no more than 25% or so of the race used the ski slopes. Some of it used the XC trails, some used old dirt roads, some was on narrow trails that I had no idea existed, and some went through the woods with no trails at all. Parts of it were pretty technical, made harder by the wet, muddy conditions. One fairly extended stretch in particular -- pretty steep downhill on a medium width trail, which was very muddy. I was with two other guys at the top of that, but they did much better on the downhill than I did. It was all I could do to keep from wiping out on the slick mud.
Even though the race featured a net elevation loss of around 1100 feet, there was still more than 1000 feet of climb, as calculated by AP from the GPS track. So there was plenty of uphill.
One particularly grueling uphill was on a ski slope, around 5 miles into the race, where it climbed 430 feet in 0.46 miles, for an average incline of 18%. For reference, the average incline of the Pike's Peak Ascent is 11%.
After that climb, we were "rewarded" with a 780-foot descent in just over a mile, to finish the race. It was fun for about the first quarter mile -- then I was really wishing it was either over, or there was a very gradual downhill the rest of the way.
I wound up winning my age group, but I may have been the only one in it ... will have to wait for results to be posted to see.
Bristol Mt did an excellent job of hosting this event, from the courteous lift attendants (one of whom, the lift supervisor, was thoughtfully wiping dry the chairlift seats right before we boarded), to the outstanding post-race dinner served in Sunset Lodge. Trailsnail and I agreed it was the best post-race meal we've ever had.
I'm thankful I didn't enter the half marathon -- they do the first part just like the 10K course, then they get to run back up to the top of the mountain and repeat it again!! So that would be 3000+ feet of climb.