AM- Long Run with Paul. I left at 5:15 am for Paul's, so only 4 hrs sleep again- tired this week. We drove to Cherry Creek canyon in Richmond and parked at 5300 ft to do a run Paul raves about- High Creek Lake, a long loop with a bit of road running. We did the road running first, knocking out over 7 miles in the first hour with some climbing. Then the trail started up High Creek, which was quite nice. It climbs only 2800 ft in 5 miles (yes, I am now used to steep trails), with increasing steepness towards the top. The pace was fairly easy, with the 6.5 mile climb taking about 1 hr 45 min. There was a beautiful, Colorado-ish high mountain meadow at about 8000 ft (I have many pictures but can't figure out how to post them- I'll update later). Lots and lots of wildflowers everywhere. The lake itself is at 8800 ft and rather small, with a perfectly smooth surface. Beautiful. After a brief rest, we climbed to a saddle, enjoyed the views, then descended and climbed to another saddle at 9400 ft. From there, it was all downhill on Cherry Creek canyon. The going was still slow due to steep trails, rocks, and overgrown bushes. The trail drops over 4000 ft in 6 miles, which took up about 70 min. There was a lady partway up who was trimming plants, which helped with trail visibility- thanks! After a few creek crossings and a bit of road at the end, we were finished. 19.6 miles in 3:59, for a whopping 12:10 avg pace, with about 5200 ft climbing and descending.
Beautiful run- probably one of the top 5 I've ever done in Cache Valley. Thanks for playing tour guide, Paul. The trail isn't great for regular training runs (too steep and slow), but is amazing for a once-in-a-while scenic runs. Amazing, amazing scenery.
This is my highest mileage week ever- 105.5 miles, with 60 miles on the trails. It is also my most elevation ever in a week- 12750 climbing and 13900 descending. I intend to break both in the coming weeks. Finally, I'm guessing it is my most ever time spent running (other than during an ultra race)- just under 17 hours. Then add another 5 hours driving to trails, a few hours sightseeing on the trails, and time getting ready before and showering after... probably 25-27 hours, in all. Lots of time. I'm just glad I have a very understanding, patient wife... thanks, babe!