Colorado Trained, Wyoming Bound

A Day in the Life21 Comments


Well, that got here quick! I am posting this with exactly 10,080 minutes left until the start of the 2014 Bighorn 100. That’s one week from now. Not much running left to do before that gun goes off. Guess that means I should start talking about the thing. I have been uncharacteristically silent this season in preparation for this race. That’s not because I am in stealth mode. Its more because I haven’t been really putting in the effort like my old self. I have a single modest goal and I am ready to gut it out to obtain it. So here is a rundown of some various topics related to the race.


Eh. Been running but not as much as usual. I tend to count the time vs. the distance these days. Lots of runs with the dogs too. I feel like I can go a long time maybe more than before, but I am far from fast. But fast never really got me anywhere in ultras. So a different me is interesting to me. But there is doubt lurking when you know you didn’t put in the effort you had in the past but you expect a satisfactory result.


I used to really geek out on the details of a race. I haven’t even seen this place. I have one crappy map and list of checkpoints. That’s about it. Just today a friend posted a video he found of somebody else’s Bighorn in year’s past. That the first time I saw the terrain. Good enough. Here is the video if you care. Doesn’t look much like Colorado but its probably going to be just as grueling. Looks like a few thousand more feet of elevation gain than the Leadville 100.


“I still don’t understand why you are doing this race”, says my supportive wife. The reason is simple. Hardrock. She questions my need to do that race too. So do I. But when you get denied on lottery day and you feel bad, you make decisions. So after being denied this year (which I expected), I looked at the revised qualifier list and made some decisions. Bighorn was a clear winner for me so here we are. The cutoff time is 34 hours. I just need to finish before that. Period. No big buckle. No time-within-a-time goal. Just move purposefully through this course and be shuffling for the last 30 miles. Don’t look for me to do anything more than that. Getting ahead of myself could only cause issues later in the race. So a finish here gets me 2 more years of Hardrock qualifiers. That’s probably good enough to get me in and test my real desire to go after the biggest of them all.


My wife and kids are headed up with me but will not be assisting me on course. I am pacerless. I am crewless. I am solo. I used to enjoy sharing my races but it only seems to cause heartache and stress. So now I am doing it with less frills and maybe leave more satisfied in the end. Utilizing drop bags.


I signed up for Twitter and Facebook posts from the course. Apparently, they have remote timing systems that give updates at a few checkpoints on course. So that’s is where you will find out if I am still trucking or not.


So we start at 11 AM Mountain Time next Friday. Late start at this race compared to other races. Should be good for me.

We travel outward 48 miles. People hit this turn at various times but say late Friday night to midnight, or maybe early Sat morning. Then we head back to where we started, plus some.

Runners then arrive back at the start sometime on Saturday. Late Saturday morning for the winners. Maybe early afternoon if you are having a good day. But you have until 9 PM (about dark) to make it before the 34 hour cutoff. Getting in about dinner time sounds about right for me but who knows.

Now where did I put my yarn?

  • pittbrownie

    I will be out there waiting to ambush you and your Hardrock dreams. Watch your back.

    • Stop following me, you stalker. I won’t sign your poster. If you start showing up at my house…

  • ff

    It’s supposed to be a beautiful course. Plan your drops well and get at least a little excited. I find myself being a little jealous. Enjoy the run.

    • I am excited to try and fill the void once again. I will have a suitcase at each aid station.

      • mikehinterberg

        I’m going to steal your gels!

    • mikehinterberg

      A good hint from Tim. The nonchalance on crewing is nice, and no pacer at night will be a fun change. But don’t forget it’s a beautiful part of the world and a (secular) blessing to be out there. Don’t just check it off the list (and don’t check off HR from the list just because it’s “hard”), stop and smell the flowers! Or run by and look at them. And enjoy the laid-back, non-Pbville/non-WS pressure and have some fun. See you out there!

      • Its not all checklist I guess. But that’s what I tend to write about. We will see.

  • Glenn

    Slow start, strong finish.

  • That guy from Alabama

    My wife and kids will also be there looking for other kids to entertain them for a couple of days.

  • Brett

    It is an awesome course. The little spike right above the ‘ouch’ on the way in is called The Wall or something. If friggin sucks. Its only like 1/2 a mile but so steep it takes over 20 minutes. The vast majority of the course is runnable…just leave yourself plenty left so on the return trip you can actually jog. Good luck!

    • Brett

      Oh, and make sure you check the weather – sometimes its 20F at the turnaround in the middle of the night…