Steamboat’s Yampa River

Bib pickup for tomorrow’s trail marathon cutoff at noon.  3 ½ hours door-to-door, Louisville to Steamboat Springs.  Early Saturday a.m. trek, breakfast stop in Georgetown (fave diner tradition).

Arrived at BAP, aka ‘the Little Red House’ on Oak Street with an hour to spare.  Steamboat-based Honey Stinger sponsors 2 races: Mountain bike Saturday, Trail marathon Sunday.  ALL proceeds to charity – the ultimate giving-back event.  10 minute walk to Howelsen Hill ‘Start’.

Last Saturday, ran my first 2017 trail race at Echo Summit (Lake Tahoe’s high Sierras).  Tomorrow would trek-up another ski summit.  Similarities: high elevation, 4000ft+ vertical gain.

Bridge-walked over Steamboat’s Yampa.  Early dinner/early to bed.

RACE DAY: UP UP UP Howelsen Hill, one of Steamboat’s 2 major ski resorts.  Unlike last week, first 7 miles were a CLIMB.  ALSO caliber of runners today, a HUGE notch up.  Pushed hard, lotta energy expended before Angry Grouse (First Aid Station).  Refueled, breathed deep, settled in.

UP UP UP thru evergreen & Colorado Aspen.  BIG HIKE up Stairway to Heaven, series of switchback climbs thru No Mo’ Blues & Wild Rose, HALF-marathon turnaround/2nd Aid Station.

Again, stopped/refueled/breathed.  So different from road marathoning/super humbling.  Mentally ON all race or risk tripping/going down hard.  first-HALF GOAL: under 3 hours.

[7-hour time limit today, an hour faster than last weekend’s ultra finish.]

5 miles to Cow Creek (Aid Station to Aid Station).  ALL downhill, fastest splits of the day.  Flew past tens of runners (June’s REVEL Rockies training).  ‘On your left’, jumping over rock.  ‘On your left’, bending with tree-limbs as I hugged mountain curves.  11 miles in, 15 minutes under the 2 hour-mark.

Mile-half on dirt road, water stop – then 6 ½ miles of warm trail UP.  More hike than jog.  Switchback return’d UP to Aid Station 2, ran outta water this leg.  Refueled, good 5 minute stop.  7 miles-ish to go.  Not a lot left in the tank but well ahead of goal.

2 miles up/over Quarry Mountain then DOWN.  Steep rocky drop: ‘Little Moab’, but remainder of the course, easy rolling trail.  Let gravity carry my heavy legs forward.  Exposed meadows last 3 ½ miles, quarter-mile past the rodeo grounds – marathon SUCCESS!

2nd trail FINISH in 8 days.  Just under 6 hours.




88 HAGA K R  5:52:18.29  Louisville CO


POST-MARATHON:  Strawberry Park Hot Springs.  Surrounded by Aspen, soaked for HOURS in 104-degree mineral water ❤




Yesterday in the high Sierras, today on scenic Lake Tahoe.

Sunrise woke in South Lake Tahoe, circled the lake northward – day’s first stop:  Emerald Bay.  Mix of tall redwood & pine – HUGE evergreen – line California’s largest freshwater lake.  Bay tinted green (emerald green) where it hugs shore.

$10 to the Park Ranger.  Successfully secured parking (kinda a big deal in California).  Stared long/hard at the Lake horizon, before starting the short steep hike DOWN to Vikingsholm on tourist-heavy Tahoe – HIKE day ❤


Vikingsholm…this magnificent “castle” is a unique blend of nature’s spectacular beauty and man’s architectural ingenuity.


The Vikingsholm foundation was laid in 1928, but the building was constructed in 1929 by 200 workers. Vikingsholm was built by Mrs. Lora Josephine Knight as a summer home. Before starting construction, Mrs. Knight and her architect traveled to Scandinavia to gather ideas for the construction of the house. Some parts of the structure contain no nails or spikes, as a result of old-fashioned construction methods. Most of the building was made from materials found at Lake Tahoe.


Mrs. Knight is best known for building Vikingsholm, but she and her husband Harry, a businessman were primary backers of Charles Lindbergh’s non-stop solo flight across the Atlantic in 1927.


Followed the steep one-mile path DOWN DOWN DOWN to Vikingsholm.

White granite canyons, HUGE forest’d trees.  Snagged 2 enormous pine cone for my Colorado mantel.

Interesting well-preserved residence, Vikingsholm, but didn’t purchased a ticket to tour inside.  I trail-hiked DOWN to see California redwood, to enjoy the all-consuming scent of pine.  Not disappointed, WOW!

Dipped both hands into Lake Tahoe before trekking back UP.  UP UP to Hwy 89, the local northbound highway I’d travel lake-circumference.  Tahoma, Tahoe City, then lunch.  3 more hours to play ‘til my return flight home from Reno.

89 North to Truckee, diverted left on Squaw Valley Road.

Squaw Valley, California – site of the 1960 Winter Olympics.  Gotta/hafta/must STOP, right?  Team USA won first-ever hockey GOLD; Americans [David Jenkins & Carol Heiss] topped both figure skating podiums.

The Games’ spirit, the OLYMPIC FLAME stays lit 24/7, 365 days/year.  Pretty neat.  I was here.







Twenty two years ago on April 19, 1995, the unthinkable happened. 168 innocent people were killed by a truck bomb detonated by a fellow American. In the first hours after the Oklahoma City bombing, Oklahomans began to immediately respond by helping and creating small makeshift memorials around the perimeter of the bombsite – mounds of flowers, stuffed animals, personal notes, cards and prayers. Each person remembered and honored those killed in their own way. In 11 days, you and around 25,000 other runners will do the same. You run to keep their memory alive and by doing so, help to ensure people around the world know the impact of violence.


We hope at 9:02am today you will pause for 168 seconds of silence with us. During this time of reflection, honor those who were killed, those who survived, and those changed forever, and feel gratitude for being able to carry their legacy with you on April 30th.

The Gates of Time


Direct flight from Denver but arrived an hour late in Oklahoma City.  Who knew it would be snowing two days before the start of May?  Spring in Colorado – LOVE it!  High wind & rain greeted in OKC.  Trees down, traffic lights out (all weekend long) but…NO tornadoes, I call it a win 🙂

Marathon bib pickup, home to NBA’s Thunder.  Walked 4 long blocks to the Oklahoma City Memorial Museum.  This is the reason I chose tomorrow’s run – proceeds fund the Memorial…and we remember.  We remember the victims of America’s first domestic terrorist attack.  168 lives.

The Museum was as moving as it was upsetting.  Multimedia news feeds, recorded audio (blast occurred during a local ‘water rights’ court case), relics & interviews.  I felt as if I were reliving the events of the day.  Well done…just not my thing.

[despite the rain] found the Outdoor Memorial a better fit/more my style.

— Reflecting Pool

— Survivor Tree

— The Gates of Time

— Field of Empty Chairs

At each of these outdoor memorials, I reflected.  Reflected on what I had seen in the Museum: on the lines of people giving blood, on the crowd of locals assisting firefighters digging thru rubble.  One of the most moving experiences of my life.  Proud American moment.



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