Davy Crockett’s Running Frontier

I like to Run Insanely Long & Crazy Distances                                                                                                             Pony Express Trail 100
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Browsing Posts in 100-mile

Kodiak 100

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I again ran Kodiak 100 which is in the San Bernardino Mountains at Big Bear Lake, California.  I ran the 100 last year and enjoyed it enough to return.  This is an easier mountain 100 and has about the same difficulty for me as Tahoe Rim 100.  But make no mistakes, there are a couple very tough sections of this race involving some long, difficult climbs.  The finishing rate is only about 65% which is pretty low, but typical for newer races that attract newer ultrarunners.

The course makes a complete loop around Big Bear Lake but you rarely see the lake because generally you run up in mountains over the ridge away from the lake.  The course involves about 17,500 feet of climbing.  What keeps its difficulty down are many miles of dirt roads and a few miles of pavement.  There are also plenty of miles of fun single track, most up on the Skyline trail.  I believe the course is a bit long.  My GPS measured the course at 102.6 miles. This year they reversed the course direction from last year, clockwise, presenting a nice inviting change.  I couldn’t use my counter-clockwise split times from last year. It would be a new experience.  I believe I enjoyed the clockwise direction of this year a bit more. continue reading…

Cascade Crest 100

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Cascade Crest 100-mile Endurance Run is held in the Cascade Mountains near Snoqualmie Summit, just an hour from Seattle Washington.  This was my fifth visit and I’ve always had an enjoyable time running this beautiful forest course.  The theme for the run is “Tall Trees, Tough Trails.”  The trees are amazing, there are long climbs (22,000 climbing feet total), but the trails aren’t too technical.  The race directors do a superb job with the race, keeping it relatively small with a family feel.

For my last visit here, In 2014, I didn’t finish the race.  I became sick during the night, and while I recovered after sitting for an hour, I lost interest and decided to quit.  I was determined to not let that happen again and wanted to finish this race for the 4th time. continue reading…

Bryce 100

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Bryce 100 is held near the famed national park, on the next major ridge line to the west. The course is pretty spectacular with views of many pink hoodoos similar to those seen in the park.  It runs above and below what are called the Sunset Cliffs that face to the west.  I ran the race in 2013 and struggled with the altitude.  Much of the course runs above 9,000 feet.  Weather is always an issue: too hot, too cold, or rain.  I knew this would be the most difficult 100-miler that I would run so far this year, but decided at the last minute to give it a try.

The two major factors that make this race difficult are:  the altitude and the long distances between aid stations.  To finish up the 100, the aid stations distances are: 9.4, 7.7, and 9.3 miles.  When you are moving slowly toward the end and if the weather is hot, this can make things very difficult and for some runners, quite dangerous.  You have to carefully prepare for the worst cases and hope to do well.  Even with my previous experience with the course, I still wasn’t prepared enough. continue reading…

 

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I returned to the Seattle area to run a lesser-known ultra, mostly run by locals, called Pigtails Challenge. There were five distances, 50K, 100K, 100 miles, 150 miles, and 200 miles. I ran this race in 2014 and finished the 150-mile race. This year I entered the 100-miler.

The Pigtails Challenge is held at the Lake Youngs watershed near Renton, Washington, which is only about 15 miles from where I grew up and went to high school. The 9.4-mile loop trail runs around the perimeter of a very protected reservoir that supplies drinking water for Seattle. Along the trail, there is only one place where you can get a glimpse of the lake. The course is very easy to follow because you simply run on the outside of the high fence that guards the property. It always reminds me of the movie, “The Village” where a society lives secretly in the woods behind high walls. continue reading…

Salt Flats 100

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I went to run the Salt Flats 100 for the fifth time near Wendover, UT.  I enjoy the course because it has fast sections, fun climbs, and challenging mud flats.  In most years, the weather has been a factor with at least passing thunder storms.  This year the salt flats were under several inches of rain and yes, the weather became a major factor during the race. continue reading…

Pickled Feet 100

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Pickled Feet 48/24/12/6 hour run is held at Eagle Island State Park, near Boise, Idaho.  It is a wonderful event put on my Emily Berriochoa. They also provide a 100-mile option.  Last weekend I ran 100 miles at 4mph challenge and I really didn’t consider running this event just one week later, but my recovery went well, the Idaho weather forecast improved, and at the last moment, I decided to head for Idaho and run. If successful, I could accomplish two 100-mile finishes with just five days of rest in between them.  I have accomplished that one other time, back in 2013, running 107.7 miles for 5th place at North Coast 24-hour, and then the next Friday running Salt Flats 100, finishing in 8th with 23:29.  So, I knew it could be done.  Could I do it again? continue reading…

4mph Challenge

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I ran in a very unique race, the 4mph Challenge.  The race runs along the shoreline of Whiskeytown Lake in northern California.  For this race you must maintain at least a 4 m.p.h. (15-minute mile) for each six-mile segment. If you don’t finish the six miles in 90 minutes, you are out. Once you finish the segment you wait for the clock until 90 minutes and off you go again for the next segment. The winner is the person who goes the furthest without timing out or quitting.

Years ago, I read the intriguing, but gruesome 1979 novel by Stephen King entitled “The Longest Walk.”  The story is similar to Hunger Games.  Teenage boys participate in an annual walking contest and must keep their pace above 4 m.p.h. You are given only three warnings if you slow, and then bam, shot dead. The winner is the last one standing and they get nice awards.  As I read it, I realized Stephen King doesn’t run.  4 m.p.h is fast.  He should have chosen 2 m.p.h. to make it more realistic.  I was interested to see what I could do with 4 m.p.h. continue reading…

Jackpot 100

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I ran Jackpot 100 held at Cornerstone Park near Las Vegas, in Henderson, Nevada.  I had never run this race before and looked forward to running in warmer temperatures away from the long, cold winter in Utah.  This race is a loop-format race on a 2.38-mile course through the park.  Various races are held concurrently, 48-hour, 24-hour, 100-mile, 12-hour, six-hour, and marathon.  I chose to run the 100-miler. continue reading…