Thursday, December 07, 2006

Hellgate Preview

Hellgate time is finally approaching. I will be heading to Virginia after work tomorrow to attempt this race for the first time. This is 100k, but more likely 65 to 66 miles long in keeping with the tradition of all David Horton races for being longer than advertised. You can read all about the race on David's website, I have a link to it on my sidebar links area now. The photo to the left was taken by Mike Day during a training run a couple of years ago. That is Little Hellgate Creek, which I believe we will be crossing in the dark .
The photo below with the snow was taken last year by Sophie Spiedel. The course runs along, up and down the ridgeline of the Mountains in the background. Fortunately this year there is no snow and ice in the forecast but overnnight lows will be in the teens. Brrrr. By the way, the race starts at 12:01 am Saturday morning.
This will be the 4th year of the event. It is a very difficult run and has a finishing rate comparable to some tough 100 mile races. There are two cut-offs and it can be difficult to make those. I knew I was not in shape to run it in 03. I was prepared to enter in 04 since I was in much better shape but I had a bad race at Masochist for some reason and decided to skip Hellgate again. In 05 I was once again considering running and was definitely running better than ever. I had a tough time at GEER 100K in Sept. and was feeling the effects of my most ambitious ultra schedule to date. I decided it was probably in my best interest not to put myself through such a tough test as Hellgate and besides I was into my Boston Marathon qualifying training by then anyway.
Well, 06 is the year finally to see if I can do this. This has been my best year by far with several course and distance PR's and I'm feeling great right now so I am confident I will have a successful run. Look for a report and hopefully some photos soon


Caren said...

Good luck! At least you'll have better conditions than last year from the reports I read. Look forward to your report and pictures.

runjoey said...

I'm glad I didn't have to deal with the ice last year. Hope to have report when I get caught up on sleep

Ryan said...

Great blog & photos! Looking forward to the Hellgate report, hope you had a fun weekend! This is on my list to do one of these days! Congrats on the WS100 entry, I look forward to following your progress on the road to WS!

runjoey said...

Thanks Ryan. Glad you enjoy it. 06 was a great year and I'm looking forward to big things in 07.