Our original plan was to run 30 miles on the BST starting at the zoo. We were going to run all the way to City Creek Canyon and then hop onto the trail on the west side of the canyon and climb up to the radio towers and then run all the way back to the zoo. With several peaks on the way we thought we would tag those as well. We did most of that, but ran out of time and didn't quite make 30 miles, but I'm totally ok with that because it was a lot more difficult than the miles would indicate and it ended up being the perfect training run.
We started out early this morning on the Mt. Wire trail. MattW joined us for the first section and it was fun chatting away and climbing up Wire. We saw several deer and elk and the views as always were really good. From Wire we traversed over to Red Butte Peak and tagged that one too. The ridge on RB gets more technical with a lot of rocks and ice and from the summit back down to the BST is actually the most challenging part of the whole run. I was a bit slower here as we made our way down to the living room (chairs made out of stone). We hung out there for a few minutes and then MattW took off on a side trail back to the BST, while we continued on into Red Butte Canyon.
The trail down into Red Butte was snow covered and awesome. It was probably my favorite part of the whole day. At the bottom we crossed over and hit another trail that would take us up Mt. Van Cott. We slogged our way up to the summit where we again enjoyed some killer views. The run back down off of VC was a blast. It was fast, steep and fun. Back down to the BST we went up Dry Fork where we had to climb all the way back up to the Ave Twin Peaks. There was a ton of climbing today and my legs started to feel it on this climb.
|Craig and MattVH on one of the Ave Twins|
We finally topped out on the Ave Twins and took a quick break. I took my 4th gel and Craig asked if we wanted to go tag Little Black Mountain too, but that didn't sound appealing to me at all, so we stayed with the plan and ran back down to the BST again, where we ran all the way back to the trailhead in City Creek Canyon. My legs were now pretty hammered and it was tough to make them go fast. The other guys put some distance on me and for the rest of the run I was trying to catch up.
We were hoping to get water at the City Creek trailhead, but it was shut off which meant I would for sure run out on the way back. MVH was pretty low too. The hike/run back up the BST was pretty brutal. I was shattered. My legs were worked and my energy low. At the top of the climb we had about 6 miles to go. Every step the rest of the run was tough and I felt really out of shape. With about 5 miles to go I ran out of water and I was starting to feel dehydrated, so I knew the final miles were going to be a total death march and they were. I stopped a few times to eat some snowballs, but otherwise I would have to wait to the finish to rehydrate.
All of the vert was now taking its toll on my legs and I'll just say it wasn't fun running it in. I have a lot of work to do before the Buffalo run. Craig and I both said this run felt more like 35 miles. It was tough, but we did have a total blast out there. There were a lot of laughs, the views were super good and overall it was a pretty sweet day.
Here are a couple of videos made by Matt and Craig: