Sunday, December 16, 2007

Kick Your Dumb Ass 50K


I move that the Tiger Mt. Dumb Ass 50K be renamed "Kick Your Dumb Ass 50K".

The profile above says it best with 12,000 ft. of climbing over 31 miles this course pushes you hard. My Garmin captured about 26 miles of the run missing a few miles due to the thick forest.

Our day started with Jane H. picking me up at my house at 5:00AM. We met Rob "Rattler" Hester at 5:20 in Sumner and cruised in style in Ray's (Jane's husbands) truck. We were the first dumb asses to show up at the start.

It was dark at the start and some us dumb asses were smart enough to bring our headlamps. Other "real" dumb asses had to follow those with lights. Luckily Steve Stoyles and I had our lights so that others could follow. You know it's going to be a long day when you need to start the self talk on the very first climb knowing that you had four more to do. There were little patches of snow along the last 1/5 of the climb with a few inches at the top and the next 3/4 of a mile. The wind was blowing at the top of T3 and provided a good incentive to head back into the woods for some shelter from the exposure. The TMT trail heading down was slippery and got slicker as the day went on due to compaction and colder temps. The snow faded to mud roots and rocks a couple of 10ths of a mile down the trail. The RD had placed signs with two "Lost Puppies" Mutt and Jeff along the route to keep us on track. Trails at intersections had white flour across them if it was the wrong way and red Gatorade on the snow trails to prevent us from heading off into oblivion. I ran into tc who was running the event but who had also volunteered to do some last min. trail marking at the turn to the TMT. We ran together off and on down the Mt. and then he took off and I never saw him till the finish. Apparently tc didn't see anyone else until the finish either.

I managed a first loop of 1:30 and after a quick refill of my water bottles and getting rid of my gortex jacket, slamming a couple of shots of Coke (the elixir of life) I was off for loop two.

Loop two was uneventful and took about 1:35 to complete. I had intended to fire up my ipod for the third loop climb. When I pulled it from my backpack it played for about 15 seconds and then locked up. I've had it do this to me before at Western States. It locks up with the screen on but it won't play and it won't shut off. I was thinking about seeing how it worked as a Frisbee but instead I stuffed it back in my pack and headed out to loop three. When I stopped at the aid station they asked me if I'd seen Jane H. on the trail because she had not check in yet. Since I had run two laps I had to assume that Jane was lost. I made the decision to run one more lap and if she had not checked in I was going to stop and help do a search.

On loop three I caught up to Michelle M. on Nook trail and we made the climb together. We chatted some and made the grunt up the hill. We played cat and mouse for the rest of the race. As we headed toward the first bridge from the turn off the K3 trail on TMT we caught up to Jane H. who had made a wrong turn right at the end of her first loop. Instead of turning right and heading to the aid station she turned left and headed out on her second loop. Apparently she was cursing me for not having shared the fact that there was a second long climb on the loop. It wasn't until she scrambled under a dead fall that she remembered from the first loop that she realized she was on her second loop. Chalk that up to the darkness at the start.

Loop four Michelle M. had a fast transition and was out before me. As I started the big climb I could hear a witch-like cackle of a laugh up ahead on the trail. As I closed on the laughter I could see two hikers with a Labradoodle up ahead. Michelle M. was ahead of them. I eventually caught up to the hikers, two women, who were chatting away. We were about 2/3 of the way up the hill so I stayed with them and talked to the summit. They were accomplished climbers having climbed Eiger and the Matterhorn so they were moving along at a good pace. I never did determine which one of them had been emitting the cackle.

Loop 5 was the gut check lap. I ended up taking three recovery breaks along the way up which proved beneficial. Again Michelle M. and I ended up at the top of T3 at the same time and even though we had a few miles of running ahead of us we both felt like we had conquered the course. I headed down T3 and onto the TMT and Michelle fell back. Once I got out of the snow onto the down hill switchbacks Michelle caught up and passed me. I caught back up to her on the TMT after the K3 trail. I tried to put some distance on her on the rolling section but she caught back up to me and passed as we made the last desent on some more switchbacks. The last mile or so was flat and rolling and I made an effort to push it to see if I could catch Michelle. I caught her at the wooden gate about 500 yards from the aid station and the finish. We ran in together to place 4th and 5th. I was the third male finisher and Michelle was the second place woman.

Congratulations to Shawn Lawson for her first place overall finish. She holds the course record and is the first official Dumb Ass.


I was a zombie on the drive home and the entire evening. I went to bed at 8:00 and didn't wake up until about 7:00AM. I skipped running this morning since we have a Christmas light run this evening in honor of one of our running club members who lost a battle with cancer.

I am a Dumb Ass and proud of it!

19 comments:

Backofpack said...

You are a Dumb Ass! You didn't have to do the run to prove it though, I coulda just told you that. (Oh, and I say that with LOVE).

Congrats on a tough run. Now, teach me how to get my hill run profile posted!

Jess Mullen said...

What a dumb ass superstar you are! Thanks for blogging about this run - I was hoping you would. I thought of you all often yesterday, wishing I could be out there getting my butt kicked on the climbs too! See you on the trails. Jess

Meghan said...

Hello Dumbass! (I couldn't resist!)

This sounds like a great day! Good job pushing yourself!

robtherunner said...

That profile says it all. Congrats on being a "real" dumb ass even though you brought your light. What a smart thing to do!

Rattler

Thomas said...

Great run, dumb ass.

runningtwig said...

That sounds like one heck of a run! Congrats on being a dumb ass!!

Michmas said...

That was one kick a** race! I spent the whole day yesterday flat on my back on the couch. But hey, at least it didn’t rain :)

Ditto on a job well done. It was great hanging out with you and certainly eased the pain of that wicked climb!

Hope to see you on the trail soon.
M

Donald said...

Wow - what a crazy course profile. Great job to finish, dude.

King Arthur said...

Great job Eric. We're all Dumb Ass to somebody.

olga said...

Congrats to Shawn for been the Dumbest Cutest Ass out there:) Yours, I guess, deserves some praise too since it hauled you to the end.

shawn said...

Great job on Saturday Eric. Glad Michelle M. was there to goad you on, but I sure wish she would've chicked you at the end. :)

So, again, as with Rob's "I Hate.." list, I'd like to hear the details of your self talk and how they developed from loop to loop. Whose names did you curse? What promises did you make to God? That sort of thing.

Sorry to hear about your running club friend. Hope the run Christmas light run was good emotional healing.

scott keeps running said...

that whole race thing was a pretty dumb ass thing to do. geez.

PNW Runner said...

Hey Dumb Ass, for some reason I got more enjoyment reading about how Michelle made you work your tail off. :) Good job, sounds like a tough race!

Sarah said...

Sounds like an aptly named run! Congrats on a great finish. : )

Gotta Run said...

Why can't I find a race with names like that? How funny you big Dumb Ass!!

What a great way to honor your friend with a run.

BTW, I read the story on the frost bite winnie. SO FREAKIN FUNNY!!!! I am still in stitches!!!

Annette said...

Congratulations on your finish - not to mention in 3rd place! That sounds/looks brutal. But, for you, I'm sure it was just another run in the park, huh? :) Got any plans to rest at all?

Sarah Elaine said...

Just stopping by to say Congrats - and merry Christmas!

Ben, aka BadBen said...

Merry Christmas, Eric. I'm glad you've reached the lofty heights of "Dumb Ass" status.

Happy trails,
Bad Ben

Anonymous said...

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