Sunday, June 28, 2009

Logan Peak Trail Run

Logan Peak 28 mile Trail Race

I ran the first annual Logan Peak Trail Race in 2007 and took pictures of the race in 2008. Both years it was a very small race with around 40 people on the start line. A couple of weeks before the race it looked like it would be small line up again. I was surprised when arrived that it looked liked at least double the number had showed up. Also the field looked to be stronger when I noticed Ty Draney, Corbin Talley, Jonathan Allen, Leland Barker, Karl Jarvis, Shane Martin, David Hayes and Eric Taft. After seeing these guys I knew it was going to be very hard to place in the top ten. I was traveling for work all week so I had a forced taper and had screwed up my back pretty good moving office furniture so I wasn’t even sure if I would be able to run the whole course or not, and if I could go the distance I wasn’t sure how I would feel.

Co R.D Bruce Copeland sent 79 of us off a few minutes past 6:00 am, 10-15 guys took off pretty fast and were already a couple minutes ahead of me by the time we hit the Dry Canyon trail just 1 mile from the start and we started the long 4 mile climb up to the first aid station. My legs felt dead and I seemed to be working really hard to just maintain a descent pace up the canyon. I decided not to force the pace and settled in behind Eric Taft. I would catch sight of Leland Barker every once in a while ahead of us so I didn’t feel like we were going to slow. I arrived at the first aid station still feeling sluggish, filled my bottles and headed out on slightly overgrown single track, soon after I hit the first snow patch of the day, as I approached I thought to myself that there appeared to be no tracks, I soon knew why as I went for a decent slide and ended up in the bushes, the snow was basically a block of ice. No harm was done and I continued on to aid station 2 still feeling slow but having no issues.

I arrived at aid station 2/3 mile 12 in a little over two hours and started the big out and back climb up to Logan Peak elevation 9,710 feet. You basically climb a dirt road for 1.5 miles and 1,200 vertical feet than return the same way you went up. There was some snow but nothing too bad. I like this part of the race because you get to see the front runners and see how fast or slow you are going.I saw the lead group on their way down about ¾ of the way from the top. It was a group of 4 or 5 with Ty and Corbin in the lead. David Hayes was a few minutes back followed closely by Leland and 3 or 4 other guys I didn’t know. So I figured I was somewhere around 11th or 12th place. I arrived back at aid station 3-4 mile 15.5 at close to 3:15 hrs. into the race

My legs started to feel good and my back felt fine as long as I didn’t bend over so I decided it was time to try and push the pace a little. I knew there was a lot of down hill to come but I also knew there were some nasty little climbs left and this is were I figured I could catch a few people. I have been pounding the down hills lately in training trying my best to keep up with Erik, Christian and Peter so I had some hope of not being passed on the down hill sections like I usually do.

I did manage to pass 3 or 4 people on the way to aid station 4. This is also the nicest part of the race as it is almost all nice forested single track and you can really push the pace if you are feeling good. I was in and out of aid station 4 in 5 seconds and pushed as hard as I dared all the way down Dry Canyon trying not look over my shoulder. Just at the bottom of the canyon I caught sight of a runner ahead, which was perfect as it gave me a rabbit to chase to keep the pace up to the end. Turns out it was Leland and I got to within a 100 yards of him but as soon as he realized I was closing on him he picked up the pace just enough that even with my best effort I could not make any gains on him. Leland finished just ahead of me for 8th place and I finished in 9th with a time of 4:57.

The Logan Peak Trail Race has been getting better every year. The field is getting bigger and deeper. The race directors had extra aid stations on course and I don’t think I have raced a better marked course yet. The aid stations were great and there was lots of prizes and great food at the finish line. Plus the top three placed runners male and female walked away with a little cash.(150.00 dollars for first place male and female). The first place winner overall was Jonathan Allen in a time of 4:26 breaking the course record by 25 min. Sarah Evans took first place women's, breaking the female course record set by none other than Sarah in a time of 5:25. She is now a 3 time female winner of the race. The distance of 28 miles make this a great mid season race to keep your racing form with out beating yourself up to much. Hopefully with the continued efforts of Race Directors Bruce Copeland and Scott Datwyler the race will continue to grow. Full results should be available soon on the race website

1 comment:

Jon said...

Nice job with a top 10 finish! I'll admit I really enjoyed the pictures you posted from last year's race (and from Wahsatch Steeplechase this year) so missed them for this race, but I'm sure you love running the races more than taking pictures, and that's the important thing! Sounds like you did great despite the less-than-ideal week leading up to it. I agree that it is a great race, well marked, good aid stations, and becoming more competitive each year. Hope it stays successful.