A summer in the Life…Part 4…White River July 30th, 2011
I’m so behind in race reports that I would just leave this one out….but thought I just had to write about it, since it is a “must do”. I’d heard really good things about this race, and it never fell on a good day for me to do it. But this year was in the midst of training for the Wasatch 100 and wanting to get in a decent long run, and since winter seemed to go on forever, in the middle of July I was attempting long runs, trying to get in some adventure and always ending up in heaps of snow….
So, I decided the weekend before the race that it might be a good training run and I suckered my friend Ryne Melcher into coming down with me and my new friend Gretel (who was friend of Mike’s) also hitched a ride and we met up with fellow teammate Mike Palichuk as he went early and set up camp for us. It was a long drive to our little campsite, we had some Safeway sandwich adventures along the way, forgetting we were in the USA and a regular size is enough for a family…but we eventually arrived at 9pm found Mike, organized drop bags and off to bed.
Morning of the race we’re up at 4:45 am, off to the start port a potty line up was endless as there was only 2 I think…but anyhow, in the midst of a beautiful morning 250 runners are off! The race is 44 miles of single track and 6 miles of forest service road…for a 50 miler in the US, that’s a awesome! I started off thinking I was going pretty slow when I heard my sarcastic friend Ken yell out, “go Jackie your in the top 10 women” and I thought, holy crap, I better slow down, I should NOT be in the top 10 in the first 5km! So, I slowed a bit, and trucked along up the first Mountain on some spectacular trails, chatting with people and Gretel was with me a lot of the way….as we got near the top I thought I should eat something and I felt like I was running too much with other people and going faster than I should have, so I got out some food and slowed and let Gretel and co. be on their way so I could run my race. We were treated to some spectacular views as we got to the top of this mountain (I wish I could remember what it was called) and then we were on our way down. I didn’t go full tilt on the downhill as I knew I had another mountain to climb, so I got passed a few times and told myself not to stress…the aid station is back at the start, so there it was great to see my friend Ken again and some other familiar faces, grabbed some food and then off to Mountain number 2, Suntop…
It was getting hot, but was a beautiful day, and I just sauntered up the second mountain, run/walking the uphill as it was pretty runnable at times. I played leapfrog with a bunch of people and enjoyed the views. Near the top I was definitely getting tired and craving a little downhill. I made a new friend on the last little section up to the top who I asked if we had a chance at sub 10 and she said, it’s 6.5 miles of downhill and another 6 miles of single track….so I made up my mind that my goal was 10 hours and I would be disappointed if it didn’t happen. At the top of Suntop it was absolutely beautiful, and I met some really friendly people at the aid station. I threw on some sunscreen and was OFF…it was 10km of easy downhill and enjoyed the absolutely most spectacular views of Mt. Rainier on the way down, it was so “in your face” there were no words!
Finally reached the aid station at the bottom, saw my friend Ken again who told me my buddy Melcher had 10 minutes on me but I might catch him, so I downed a snickers and some coke told myself I had to run the whole way and try to catch him. This section of single track is AWESOME…if you have not just run 70km…but definitely fun, rolling single track. I managed to will myself to run most but a few of the longer uphills and passed a tonne of people on the way, ….most of the people who had passed me on the downhill of mountain 1(for lack of its name) actually…anyhow, I also ran into my friend Gretel who was mentally struggling a little I told her to “get on my heels and let’s do this in under 10 hours”….which was both our goals…she fell off my heels slightly, and as I rounded the corner to the finish my friend Melcher came into sight, he turned and saw me and went to the finish….so I finished 30 seconds behind him and Gretel was about 2 minutes behind me…not bad for 3 people who drove down together and didn’t’ run together all day! I finished in 9:50….so I was excited to have made my goal time….
AND to top it all off, Gretel and I were pretty excited to found out that we were the 9th and 10th females.
Thanks so much to Kintec, Hoka, and smartwool for keeping my feet happy and to the race organizers for making this a spectacular