28 July 2011

I ♥ Fort Collins Trail Runners

Alex and Ean - they made this trip happen
  Monday and Tuesday this week Alex and Ean May organized what will hopefully become an annual Fort Collins Trail Runners event, an overnight camping trip with a day long run along the Colorado Trail.  My family and I had a great time.  Without getting too sappy, I ♥ Fort Collins Trail Runners.  What a fun time the trip was. 
Brian 29, Mindy, Celeste, Ean, Alex, me, and Mary at the end of our epic run

 Mindy, Celeste, Alex, Ean, Mary, Brian 29, and my family all met at the Kenosh Pass campground (between Fairplay and Bailey) on Monday afternoon.  We heard stories from Celeste and Mindy's big bike rides the weekend prior, took a walk down the start of Segment 5 of the Colorado Trail, and shared dinner in a low key relaxing evening.  Tuesday morning we woke as the sun was just peeking over the horizon and had a trail runner's breakfast of coffee and poptarts.  By 6:30 AM we were starting down Segment 6 of the CT.
Beautiful mountains 5 Minutes into the run.  This does not suck.
There were wildflowers everywhere

  Segment 6 of the CT runs from Kenosha pass, 10,000 ft, up over Georgia Pass (and the Continental Divide) at 11,800 ft, and then down to 9200 ft.  It is about 33 miles long with about 4500 ft of vertical gain.  It's also beautiful.  Within 5 minutes we were witness to wide open vistas with huge mountains looming on the horizon.  Other times we saw meadows full of wildflowers.  We ran through lush forests you would have thought belonged in the Northwest, and we ran across open tundra at treeline on the Divide.  Did I mention the flowers, they were everywhere.  Alex told us it was a scenic segment and we were not disappointed.

Mt. Guyot in the distance

The trail down off Georgia Pass and down into Breckenridge (which can be seen just to the right of the top of that post)
Wildflowers on the way down into Breckenridge
  I ran with Celeste and Mary for the first 23 miles and a formidable team we were.  We laughed, joked, frollicked, ran, hiked, and had a great time.  We all had high points and low points and we shared our excess energy when needed to get eachother through.  

Mary, Celeste, and Me.  Photo by Mindy 

And then we met up with Mindy and Ean and the energy level went up 3 notches for the last 10 miles.  I'll tell you what, no matter how bad you feel (and for awhile I felt downright bad), you cannot help but smile when your running partners are skipping down the trail singing at the top of their lungs  (♫♪ Running on-running on empty, Running on-running blind ♪♫).  And smile I did, even when feeling the worst I am smiling in all the pictures.  That has to be some sort of metric indicating a good run.
Me having fun - photo by Mary
Ean having fun - photo by Celeste
  I am sure I didn't do the day justice in this writeup, but wanted to get it out there before the memories fade with new ones from 24 Hours of Towers, so it is what it is.  If you need more evidence the day was fun, you need look no further than Facebook.  Between myself, Mindy, Mary, and Celeste there must have been 150 pictures up on facebook within 24 hours of returning to Fort Collins.  Yeah, I think we all had a blast.  I really do love this trail running community I've found.  We run together and we play together.  We support each other and help push each other to do things we would not believe possible on our own.  And we drink beer.  What more could I ask for?

Nearly done and all smiles!  Photo from Celeste



  1. I definitely had a blast. What an awesome day and I am so glad you were there to share it. I am already looking forward to out next trip. . .R2R2R in October? Let's start planning.

  2. Sorry I missed it...looks like you had a blast!! I'm in for R2R2R!