Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Going Higher

The omnipresent work week began again Monday morning and I worked to get a lot done in the morning before I headed out from Boulder down to get a few errands done before driving West to Leadville. I stopped in at the Colorado Trail Foundation's office, which is in a really amazing old building with an incredible mountaineering museum also housed inside. Bill, the director of the CT Foundation was extremely helpful and provided me with some great new maps as well as advice and things to look out for. He also wasn't shy about voicing his opinion that I was completely insane, but he was super helpful and supportive as well! Some forest fires recently popped up around the area of the beginning of the trail which we'll certainly keep our eyes on. I said goodbye and headed out for the short drive to Leadville.

Leadville is North America's highest incorporated city at an elevation of 10,430 - the ideal place to be for a few days of acclimatization. Interestingly enough, Leadville, CO was also where my 51 marathons adventure began just 2 years ago so the town has a special significance to me, and it seems only fitting to start this next big adventure in the same place. Spending a few days at this high elevation seems really to be doing the trick and I'm not feeling nearly as winded as I would have expected.

I went out for a very short run/hike today of just a few miles. I first drove out to the CO Trail trailhead nearest to Leadville. I snapped some photos of the beautiful scenery, but decided against running on the trail, as I just feel like it would be bad juju and I want all my footsteps on the CT during my trek to be my first ones there. So after fighting off the intense mosquitoes and stinging flying things for a few minutes, I hopped back into the car and headed back to Leadville and up to the other trail system with which I'm familiar here- the Leadville Marathon course. Wow- talk about a flood of memories as I began my trek up the trail here for my short jaunt. My mind was awash with memories of the 50 marathons adventure as this was my very first of the 51 marathon courses- what a way to start! I remembered huffing and puffing up this very trail with an intense infection and lots of congestion added to my having just come from sea level on the MS coast to over 10,000 feet. What a journey that was, and I know the CO Trail journey at hand will be similarly special. After my short jaunt I felt fresh and ready to keep going on and on, but this week is the time to rest. I can hardly wait to get on the trail and get going!

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