If you’re lucky enough to be in the mountains, you’re lucky enough!

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Fun at Spruce Mountain Open Space

We've not been able to get out much this week - Steve did a short run Monday night after work and Kathleen did a before work run on Wednesday morning. BUT, THANKFULLY!!! we were able to get out today for a very fun trail run!!! We did a 10+ miler on the Spruce Meadow/Spruce Mountain trails. We have mountain biked these trails many times over the years (we bike a 30ish mile big loop) but today was the first time we ran this portion (we are slowly morphing into REAL trailrunners, I think!). The picture above is at the start of the sort-of lollipop loop. The first two miles roll through open prairie, then begin to climb into scrub oak and finally pines on Spruce Mountain. Unfortunately, there is not much green or color yet-the scrub oaks are still bare so the pictures seem a little dull. But it really is a beautiful area!

S starting the climb up the switchbacks to the top of Spruce Mountain . . .

. . . and K bringing up the rear!
Now we are on top of Spruce Mountain, looking north toward Castle Rock and Denver. On a really clear, bluebird day, we can see all the way to the famed snow capped Longs Peak. The views from up here are amazing! Today was a little hazy so no Longs Peak. Oh, by the way, this is one of the few days K has worn a short sleeved top on her run - it was mid 60's and we were trying to get maximum vitamin D absorption. Winter was too long this year!

S enjoying the descent off of Spruce Mountain!

We met an interesting trailrunning team today - pictured above (on top of Spruce Mountain) is Steve and his burro, Finegan. Today, they did a 12 mile training run in preparation for the trail races they will do over the summer. Finegan is 10 years old and was so sweet and mellow! We spent quite a bit of time talking to Steve and petting sweet Finegan. Burro racing is really an interesting sport. Steve gave us this website: http://www.packburroracing.com/. Look it up! It is a fun, entertaining, and interesting website. Steve and Finegan are pictured in one of their 2007 races in the "Gallery" section. He said they are always looking for new burro racing recruits and can put people in touch with "rental burros" for those wanting to try something new and exciting involving lots of trailrunning with a companion. We thought it looked fun!
After our most excellent run and visit with Steve and Finegan, we climbed into the truck and had to agree that "Life is good!". Get out and enjoy!
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