Archive for August, 2009

Recovering from IT Band Syndrome

August 19, 2009

6 years ago I completed the Jay Mountain Marathon. As my first race it was to be the beginning of my running career. I was hooked and vowed to train harder and get faster.



The hiccup, that I ignored then, and continued to ignore for the next 5 years was the acute pain that developed in my left knee after a run. In fact after the race I did could not walk for a few days without a pitiful limp. The start of every season brought the same symptoms, brought on by over-enthusiasm, and inadequate preparation. Midway through last spring the story took a turn for the worse when the pain became so severe that I could not walk stairs or even climb into bed without cringing.


Alaska Mountain Wilderness Classic

August 13, 2009

The Alaska Mountain Wilderness Classic could be considered “the original adventure race.” It was first held in 1982, seven years before the first Raid Gauloises, thirteen years before the first Eco-Challenge, and twenty years before the first Primal Quest. I’ll add that the Classic could also be considered the only “real” adventure race – today’s most well-known races are really just a prescribed sequence of outdoor sports – and burdensome rules, substantial mandatory gear lists, aid stations and support crews, and numerous checkpoints neutralize much of the “adventure” from these television-oriented events.


Suiattle Crest 50 Mile Loop

August 7, 2009

Colin Abercrombie and I completed a 50 mile loop in the Glacier Peak Wilderness that includes 12,500+ ft of elevation gain and passes through six passes (Little Giant Pass, High Pass, Buck Creek Pass, Suiattle Pass, Cloudy Pass, Spider Gap). The 50 mile distance was not contrived – we simply used existing trails and routes that made the most sense. We did the loop in 13:37, but our progress was often slowed by stops to photograph the amazing scenery. A large portion of this extremely aesthetic loop follows near the Cascade crest along the Suiattle River drainage, hence the name “Suiattle Crest 50 mile.” The first 16 miles are particularly challenging with steep hill climbs, thick brush, off-trail travel, and routefinding issues. The remainder of the route is more straightforward and the last 13 miles are very runnable. For splits and many more photos, check out the complete trip report on CascadeClimbers or nwhikers.


Gannett Peak – FKT

August 3, 2009

Gannett may be the best mountain you’ve never heard of. At 13,804′ it is the highest in Wyoming (the Grand Teton is slightly lower), and is in the heart of the rugged Wind River Range. It’s remote – requires a 40 mile round-trip – and rugged – requires glacier travel and some rock scrambling. On August 1, Peter Bakwin established the Fastest Known Time on this fine mountain, a splendid 12 hrs, 39 mins.

Gannett (more…)