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

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Two Girls on a Joy-Run

Monday morning dawned spectacularly perfect - bluebird skies and pleasantly warm temperatures.  I picked up Tammy and we headed over to Manitou, destination: Barr Camp.  In an effort to gain some altitude right quick and in a hurry and avoid some of the crowds on the lower switchbacks, we headed up the Incline.  Along the way, we ran into a gentleman, Jerome, whom I have seen the past four times I have been up the Incline.  I don't know the man, at all, other than seeing him  here - he's a very jolly sort of fellow and seems to LOVE the Incline (I think more than us!) - it appears to be his Happy Place.  It has been fun to see his familiar, beaming face the past few climbs.
Ooey, gooey, sweaty - one mile down, 4.5 to go.  
Even though it was early and it wasn't too hot, we were dripping!  The high altitude sun is strong and this initial effort is fairly intense.
After hopping on the half mile connector trail, we joined up with Barr Trail.  It was a nice four mile climb, from here, to Barr Camp.  I really enjoyed this section because it is a realistically runnable grade for mere mortals like me.  There were a few steep pitches that we elected to hike but for the most part, we ran.

Again, I LOVED this 4 mile section of trail.  I wish my photos could do justice to the scenery.  I will try to do better next time.  It is such a beautifully magnificent yet peaceful setting - awesome.
We stopped for refueling and visited briefly with the friendly folks at Barr Camp.  Barr Camp has various forms of overnight accomodations available, albeit rustic.  There are campsites to pitch a tent, lean-to type structures (equipped with mattresses - bring your own sleeping bag!), bunkhouse, and separate cabin (again, pack your own sleeping bag!).  Could be a fun weekend outing, were it not that I would have to carry my own bed (sleeping bag) up!!!  :-)  

One of the local residents begging for a handout.
More local residents getting busy with their carbo load.
A quick look at the creek before we headed back down.

Tammy took the lead on the descent, and lead she did.  Holy cow, the girl is fast and fearless on the descent!  I tend to be a more cautious (and somewhat LAZY) descender - I like to coast - and she made me WORK.  HARD.  I LOVED it!  Thanks, Tammy, for busting on me - it was all good!  :-)  She flew down the mountain for about 3.5 miles and then eased up on me and we coasted the last few miles to the end, thank goodness!

We splashed around in the creek a few minutes, near the end, and if I would have had a change of clothes, would have gone for the leg ice bath immersion.  But, since we were  NEEDING to make a public appearance by partaking of a post-run mate' tea, I opted  to avoid the drowned rat look.  We ended with a visit to The Mate' Factor for a peach mate' - YUM!!!

For me, it most certainly was a joy-run.  A picture perfect day, a magnificent setting, wonderful trail, and good company - it can't get too much better.  We ended up with around 11 miles and about 3600 feet of climbing.  A good day, indeed.
Happy trails to everyone this week!


funderson said...

NICE! My running buddy who used to live over there says we need to come do the Incline as we're signed up for a 25k in Marble and the first 4 miles climb 2900 feet...ug... It looks beautiful!

Danni said...

That looks fantastic.

Julie said...

How fun to go on a girls joy run:) I enjoyed the pictures...beautiful scenery! You both rocked that run...nice work!

Anonymous said...

You are good... got this posted fast :) Actually... I'm just lazy!! Ha :)
What a wonderful morning.. I just loved it too! I look forward to another when I get back from my trip! :) Maybe we can get our boys to join us next time:))

Jennifer said...

Great run with great pictures as usual! Cheers and have a great weekend!

Tina @GottaRunNow said...

After seeing your photos, I feel like I've been on a CO vacation. What a great view, but it must have taken a lot of muscle to get there! Makes me tired just thinking about it.

Ace said...

Hey thanks for the pics, gonna go do this on Saturday. Is this the cross over trail to the incline at the top or is there an access point at the bottom?

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Happy Feet 26.2 said...

It's funny you mentioned the "fast- down" When my sister and I hiked in New Mexico, I was scared going down, but enjoyed going up. My sister was just the opposite - she definitely preferred the down.

Jill said...

Ahhh, Barr Camp - memories!!! One thing I learned about Barr Camp: bring plenty of water or your own water filter or $5 to use theirs. None of which I had on my first run up there. Well, I'm envious of your awesome adventure...I'm certain I'd still be on the incline portion of that 4 day ago run so good thing I didn't go. I DO want to do it one day, thanks for always being such an inspiration for me (and excellent pep-talker. There's no one better!).

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