Sunday, March 27, 2011

The Great Debate

A working title?

One of my best hooks?

This post does not concern the nature of spiral nebulae and the size of the universe. It's not even an ode to the director /actor driven drama starring Denzel Washington, although I love me a good underdog story.  This entry is a testament to the ultra-running prowess of the little hamlet I call home.  Ripe with some 20,000 residents, there is not a single city in the the country that fills entrant lists faster per capita, I'm willing to bet at least one RVR visor on it.

So thank you Boulder and Seattle but, um, no thank you.  It was a valiant effort Bozeman and Flagstaff, you even had Chattanooga bringing up the rear for a spell.  Alas none of you managed more sub 24 hour buckles at WS in 2010, nope not even close  Just imagine what could have been had the two time defending champ finished,  trust me we're still imagining that!

Easily the best field ever assembled at Fairhaven Park.        Glenn Tachiyama
So it has been no surprise to find Ashland, OR atop the results at this years biggest races. Case in point, last weekends Chuckanut 50k where Erik Skaggs, Timothy Olson, and Jenn Shelton ran out of their minds to finish 3rd, 5th and 2nd respectively.  What about the week before at the Way too Cool 50k? Again, Timothy Olson finishing 4th and the man with the visor 5th. Shout outs to Shahid Ali, Brad Noyes, Darrin Bolz, Robert Shannon, and Jennifer Callans on thier performances at the Way too Cool 50k too!  The two biggest 50ks of the year (so far) and only two runners from CO in the top five of both races.  What's happening to these athletically affluent states?

In front of Timothy for a time, feet barely in the air. 

 Things aren't changing anytime soon either.



Next weekend is the Lake Sonoma 50 and it's going to be stacked with Rogue Runners.  This event, in it's 4th year, has become one of the most hotly contested races on the west coast filling months in advance of it's event date.  This year some 240 runners will tackle the out and back course along the banks of Lake Sonoma, submerging themselves in almost a dozen stream crossings with temperatures in the upper 70's.  Of those starters, here's our contigent;

Shahid Ali
Timothy Olson
Carly Koerner
Hal Koerner
Darcy Kleiman
Rich May
Eric Dinger
Tia Boddington
Karolina Wyszynska
Desiree Barnes
Rob Cain
Grey Hecht
Tamara Ellis
Dana DuVivier
Annie Crispino-Taylor

Obviously my tongue in cheek intro kept some of you reading and well now you know that my blogs are always a work in progress and this one could mostly be defined as in jest, you certainly wouldn't want to define it as much else anyways. I conclude, however, with admiration for an amazing work ethic towards those runners stepping out of the norm while keeping steadfast stride after stride after stride.  Best of luck to everyone this weekend from Ashland and wherever you may roam.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Traveling

Seems everyone's traveling this month. As I train/test here in Argentina, the rest of the crew wanders north to Bellingham for this weekends Chuckanut 50k.  I've run the race 5 times and would have loved to make it six but RVR will be well represented as Erik, Jenn and Tim find their place in one of the largest ultras around. Check out the live feed, here

Building on this general theme I attempted to chronicle the vagabond nature of adventurers by what they leave behind.   In this case, I highlight for you the abandoned fifth wheels of South America.  These "homes" have seemingly washed ashore in El Chalten and can be spotted as easily as a Madonna cover on the local radio station. I imagine these structures once helped home owners brave the harsh winter as they completed the unique dwellings that dot this valley. 


In the first place.

As seen from the B&B.

Custom cave dweller art.

Keep Chalten Blue.


No Brand.


Special "nation" edition.

Blank Canvas, nice PT Cruiser.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Al Sur

I bailed out of Reno (via WTC 50k) faster than Butch and Sundance. It proved just as fatal as I arrived in El Chalten, Argentina (or was it Bolivia) some 30+ hours later barely able to stand and ankles as puffy as Erik Skaggs circa August 2009. That is his new nickname, but only because he drinks CIROC.  


 Bursts of adrenaline mimicked race day, and managed to keep me going as glimpses of the Andes through the clouds materialized over the sage covered plains. Did I mention we had to dodge Emu/Ostrich?, coyote, guanaca, and armadillo on the way!  The photograph here is pretty iconic but has become more progressive as the trip from Calafate is now about 2 hours from 6.   


Switchin' Lanes

From what I have heard, this place has been reupholstered over the last few years.  I have good word it’s to many folks dismay and now resembles something like Crested Butte or an ancient Telluride.  Has it lost the appeal or sense of adventure it once shared with only a few gutsy travelers? I’m not so sure, but I think it only takes a few minutes on the trails out of town to get it back.   

 We immediately hiked up a 2,000ft trail to a mesa overlooking the Rio Fitz Roy and the set of granite spires that have designed this trip.  I did a little video testimonial for the Better Than Naked line (blue jacket) that I have been wearing but it proved a little hard after little to no sleep and I couldn’t quite get my lines down, good thing they still love me for my running. 

Business or pleasure?

One of the most beautiful sunrises ever.

Monday evening bled into Tuesday with not much sleep, but we were certainly rewarded with great light on Fitz Roy and amazingly Cerro Torre.  Tracy has not been felling well, the ills of traveling halfway around the world, but put together some fantastic images with me.  We also completed a few video vignettes at several locations and I am amazed at the work these guys compile. 


El Chalten below.

The scene.

Monolithic!

The set.

We did finish last night with an amazing dinner complete with climbing wall d├ęcor.  I can’t say were roughing it yet but the weather is supposed to turn and I need to get back to work, yeah right! 

Not just a town in the Arkansas River Valley.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Fuse Burns at TNT Despite Rain




The 2011 running of the Tar 'n Trail 6 miler is in the books.  Just like previous editions, the race proved to be challenging for the 138 runners that braved the elements (and climbs) to help make this 4th annual event another huge success.

The race features a wild ride through some of Ashland's best parks and trails.  It begins on the well manicured trails of Lithia Park to the adjacent applause of Ashland Creek before doubling back on the fast and flat tar of Granite Street.  Erik Skaggs made his move here and would be hard to catch as the race begins it's ascension over the next couple miles.

Runners as young as 8 and as young as 69 made their way up the infamous quarry stairs to the ditch trail and from there the ditch road and Strawberry-Hald Park.  The course undulates once again and tops out at the entrance to the Bird Song Trail where switchbacks abound to dizzy the most experienced trail runner or Jenn Shelton .  Legs that have accumulated some 800 feet of climb now brace themselves for the massive descent back to town.  It's over a mile of shoe slapping street-work to the finish where the most technical aspects of the race, those sneaky stairs usher in the finishers. Not much thwarted these racers though as it seemed everyone was game for one of the most unique races in the valley.

In the end it all added up for the AWTA  as proceeds help to pad trails all over the watershed and town.  Thanks again to all of our many volunteers, Great Harvest Bakery, Basement Ink, and AWTA.

 
All smiles at the registration table.


Leland, did you drop the baton?

The final climb up Hitt road, really. 

Soggy scene at the finish.


1st to 4th; Erik, Andy, Bob, and Jayce


Lot's of fun pics can be found here thanks to Shahid.

Saturday, March 05, 2011

2011 Tar N Trail Results

Tar N Trail 6-Miler
3/5/2011
Lithia Park, Ashland, OR. 
Rain

Place Bib Name Age Gender Time
1 277 Skaggs, Erik 28 M 35:13
2 238 Kelm, Andrew 38 M 38:26
3 310 Julian, Robert 42 M 38:28
4 232 Ives, Jace 27 M 39:04
5 308 Davis, Gerald 20 M 40:13
6 275 Shelton, Jenn 27 F 40:29
7 309 Jackson, Ben 18 M 41:10
8 198 Conley, David 27 M 41:20
9 315 Schaaf, Isaac 17 M 41:30
10 321 Jackson, Sam 18 M 41:39
11 230 Holmes, Brendan 31 M 41:59
12 224 Griffin, Joe 50 M 42:01
13 208 Eisen, Jeremy 40 M 42:13
14 233 Jahn, Corbyn 19 M 42:51
15 335 Tutland, Niko 16 M 42:54
16 270 Saulsbury, Scott 42 M 43:09
17 333 Broom, Nathan 32 M 43:13
18 330 Gutches, Kent 51 M 43:34
19 210 Engstrom, David 45 M 43:40
20 205 Dinger, Eric 37 M 43:48
21 281 Stemple, Camden 15 M 43:49
22 314 Herrera, Navarre 16 M 43:57
23 271 Schweiguth, Melissa 36 F 44:11
24 254 Noyes, Brad 35 M 45:00
25 258 Owens, Dylan 33 M 45:17
26 305 Cain, Rob 57 M 45:50
27 297 Wikander, Chad 38 M 55:40
28 209 Elbert, Chad 39 M 46:11
29 266 Raber, Tyrone 33 M 46:37
30 294 Wallstrom, Pete 38 M 47:01
31 241 Kiesling, Alex 16 F 47:25
32 247 Lowe, Jacob 14 M 47:48
33 186 Asman-Prudell, Cole 14 M 47:48
34 280 Staha, Stephen 31 M 48:01
35 265 Raber, Laura 32 F 48:19
36 302 Meador, Stephen 21 M 48:32
37 284 Stemple, Scott 45 M 48:34
38 278 Slack, Travis 14 M 48:35
39 186 Asman-Prudell, Cole 14 M 48:36
40 332 Sargent, David 30 M 48:57
41 206 Dungan, Chuck 39 M 49:17
42 268 Requejo, Santiago 32 M 49:38
43 306 Bacon, Tucker 21 M 49:55
44 304 Carter, Austin 23 M 49:56
45 228 Hazel, Felicia 47 F 50:06
46 312 Greenblatt, Dana 16 F 50:18
47 322 Anderson, Greg 29 M 50:29
48 248 McPherson, Tim 13 M 50:41
49 244 Kominsky, Steven 28 M 51:02
50 264 Pryor, Karl 47 M 51:07
51 249 Meyer, Elena 47 F 51:37
52 259 Olson, Jeffrey 41 M 51:56
53 283 Stemple, Lela 13 F 52:00
54 219 Gallagher, Mike 30 M 52:11
55 184 Alonzo, Ron 61 M 52:12
56 234 Janssen, Megan 28 F 52:18
57 313 Chaves, Maddie 16 F 52:48
58 329 Ahle, Tom 61 M 53:02
59 212 Fox, Eric 43 M 53:06
60 290 Turner-Gerlach, Bryan 30 M 53:25
61 295 White, David 67 M 54:24
62 219 Gallagher, Mike 30 M 54:24
63 220 Gatz, Casey 28 M 54:49
64 197 Combs, Chris 32 M 55:02
65 331 Brinkley, Beth 47 F 55:03
66 199 Crawford, Joseph 14 M 55:04
67 216 Fralich, John 10 M 55:05
68 187 Barton, Jennifer 39 F 55:06
69 324 Hodge, Robert 50 M 55:08
70 326 Aker, Martha 46 F 55:20
71 267 Rambo, Sidney 37 F 55:22
72 285 Stone, Jeff 55 M 55:23
73 319 Blackwolf, Quinn 14 F 55:43
74 320 Dunagan, Sara 15 F 55:45
75 294 Wallstrom, Pete 38 M 55:53
76 185 Arnold, Randy 47 M 56:09
77 227 Harris, Jim 33 M 56:15
78 303 Hammond, Tom 47 M 56:24
79 336 Prescott, Tom 41 M 56:54
80 242 Kling, Alison 55 F 57:44
81 221 Goldman, Steve 64 M 57:46
82 231 Hurd, Barbara 50 F 57:52
83 250 Micham, Melanie 39 F 58:17
84 191 Bertel, Tony 25 M 58:20
85 188 Barton, Savanna 13 F 58:53
86 215 Fralich, Ian 9 M 59:03
87 255 Noyes, Dave 60 M 59:07
88 261 Parks, Brooke 29 F 59:08
89 291 Voelkel, Emily 26 F 59:16
90 288 Toll, Scott 52 M 59:23
91 337 Pederson, Scott 50 M 59:24
92 236 Johnson, Mike 30 M 59:41
93 311 Parker, Emma Rose 14 F 59:42
94 273 Shanor, Tara 36 F 59:56
95 220 Gatz, Casey 28 M 59:57
96 211 Feinberg, Joanne 50 F 1.00.00
97 235 Johnson, Kimberly 28 F 1.00.10
98 182 Abrams, Arnie 57 M 1.00.16
99 253 Newell, Matt 34 M 1.00.24
100 182 Abrams, Arnie 57 M 1.00.45
101 253 Newell, Matt 34 M 1.00.45
102 217 Fralich, Kristian 8 M 1.00.47
103 279 Staha, Aysha 32 F 1.00.57
104 276 Silverman, Megan 31 F 1.00.58
105 218 Fralich, Zach 11 M 1.00.59
106 213 Fralich, CB 38 M 1.01.00
107 256 Noyes, Monique 35 F 1.01.00
108 225 Hackwell, Danielle 33 F 1.01.09
109 246 Looney, Kayla 16 F 1.01.13
110 327 Clark, Marty 44 M 1.01.48
111 192 Borgatti, Jasmine 33 F 1.03.27
112 263 Perry, Bess 28 F 1.03.28
113 200 Deluca, Mary Ellen 52 F 1.03.36
114 214 Fralich, Erinn 40 M 1.04.08
115 252 Nealy, Johnna J. 27 F 1.04.15
116 325 Hodge, Ruth 49 F 1.04.15
117 300 Zowada, Larry 60 M 1.04.23
118 229 Hickey, Kelsey 25 F 1.05.06
119 269 Rullamps, Daniel 26 M 1.07.46
120 183 Abrams, Mary 58 F 1.08.05
121 260 Owens, Marni 31 F 1.08.53
122 196 Carter, Kathy 45 F 1.08.59
123 282 Stemple, Kara 42 F 1.09.29
124 262 Pech, Margaret 34 F 1.09.54
125 251 Murphy, Linda 61 F 1.09.56
126 239 Keppler, Gene 56 M 1.10.03
127 299 Wolfe, Kathy 60 F 1.10.18
128 189 Bekermeier, David 69 M 1.13.15
129 257 Noyes, Renae 58 F 1.17.13
130 240 Keppler, Sharon 49 F 1.18.46
131 274 Shaskey, Norman 63 M 1.22.15
132 301 Nangle, Cooper 8 M 1.27.23
133 195 Carole, Jana 53 F 1.30.50
134 323 Jamison, Lisa 38 F 1.32.00
135 307 Ali, Nasra 48 M 1.43.21