On Sunday Rick H, Dan V, and I headed out from my house to try the Palmer Lake Res/Balanced Rock Road/Rampart Range Rd/Winding Staircase Rd loop. Since moving to Palmer Lake, this has become one of my favorite loops, but it is def. a summer/fall loop with tons of snow in the winter and early spring. We tried it a few weeks ago and turned back after about 4 miles of post-holing. It is 22 miles total, and tops out at 9200 feet (starting at 7200 feet at my house).
There was no snow at all till we go up to the reservoirs at about 7600 feet. Starting here, there were snowbanks extending across the trail every so often for most of the remainder of the loop. Dan was the smart one, as he was wearing tall socks but Rick and I really beat up our shins each time we sunk down into the snow. As we got higher, we were treated to some great views of the snow covered Pikes Peak (South of us) and Mt. Evans (North of us). Probably in a few more weeks this run will be completely clear.
I am feeling pretty good after an easy 3 weeks and am now signed up to run the Jemez Mountain 50 Miler with Rick on May 17.
Also, after the last 2 years being un-sponsored, I'm very happy to be running for Smith Optics/Pearl Izumi as of this week. I'll write up a review of the various shoes as soon as I get them.
Last 3 weeks of training log:
Thu 04/03 – 1:00:00 Including 3.2 mile tempo run up Rampart Range Rd in snowstorm (24:30)
Sat 04/05 – 3:00:00 Greenland Open Space/Spruce Meadows/Spruce Mountain and back.
Week – 4:00:00 / 30 miles
Mon 04/07 – 35:00 around neighborhood
Sat 04/12 – 2:40:00 hilly w/Rick. Crystal Park Road/Palmer Trail/Section 16/Intemman trail/Red Rocks back to Manitou
Week – 3:15:00 / 25 miles
Fri 04/18 – 30:00 easy on roads with Darwin
Sat 04/19 – 23 miles / 3:19:00 SF Trail/Stables/Falcon Loop. Warm.
Sun 04/20 – 22 miles Palmer Lake/Rampart Range Rd loop 3:18 still snowy in places.
Week – 7:10:00 / 49 miles