RE: [hr100] HardRock100 story (looooong)
> -----Original Message-----Here's some of the story:
> From: Feucht, Andrea L. [mailto:andrea@...]
> Sent: Friday, July 27, 2001 11:41 AM
> To: 'email@example.com'
> Subject: RE: [hr100] HardRock100 story (looooong)
> 65 48:01:11 Randall Dunn
> So.... tell me a story about this guy. What happened? I was there when
> Rollin and Jim finished, but at the time Dale said that no one else was
> coming down the mountain.
> Anyone know?
> Andrea, in ABQ
> alf@... <mailto:alf@...>
> http://tenacity.net <http://tenacity.net/>
I came to Hardrock with the modest goal of finishing within the 48-hour
cutoff, which I would guess is the minimal goal for anyone entered. (I
actually hoped to finish in the 40 - 42 hour range because I was running
without a pacer, and was very uncertain about how I would be able to handle
staying awake the second night.) I felt confident that my training and
preparation could support this goal. The first part of the run went pretty
much as I expected that it would - I was real slow on the steep uphills, but
was able to make up the time on the downhills. I had to deal with some
problems that I had hoped that I could avoid (e.g., having extreme
difficulty eating or keeping anything down from Ouray to the finish), but
these problems were no different than what many other runners were dealing
I was on track for finishing under the cutoff until I went through the
Maggie-Cunningham section on Sunday night. I got caught up in some personal
mind games that went something like this:
"Gee, it seems like there hasn't been a course marker for a while. Did I
follow the course correctly at the last junction, or am I off course? If
I'm off course and keep going, I have no chance of finishing. On the other
hand, if I backtrack to the last marker and make sure that I'm on course, I
still have a shot at making it." At this point, I would backtrack to a
previous junction and course marker only to find out that I had been going
correctly. (I want to emphasize that the course was adequately marked - I
made the decision to backtrack because of my uncertainty about my
alertness.) The first time that I did this, Rollin and Jim came by and
invited me to join them, which I gladly did. I managed to stay with them
for most of the ascent, but could not keep up (I'm a slow climber) as we
approached the top. I went through my little mind game twice on the descent.
I finally got to the Cunningham aid station after more than 4 hours
(significantly longer than nearly every other runner) from leaving the
Maggie aid station. I went through the Cunningham aid station at about 1:00
a.m. Sunday morning and started the long (slow) climb. When I got to the
descent toward Silverton, I picked up the pace to a jog which got faster and
faster as it became more apparent that time was running out. When I crossed
the bridge into Silverton, I knew that my odds of finishing under 48 hours
were slim. I took off my waist pack and ditched it behind a bush so that I
wouldn't be carrying the weight. There were a few spectators doing
everything they could for me - giving encouragement, trying to keep me
posted on time remaining, making sure that I had a clear and open course to
the finish. When I hit Greene Street, I went into a full sprint. As I neared
the school, I saw that the time had already passed 48 hours. The official
time for my unofficial finish was 48:01:11.
I would be lying if I said that there wasn't some disappointment in missing
the cutoff - after all, that was the target that I had been focused on for
the entire run. But the disappointment was completely dwarfed by the
experience that I had just gone through. I had spent two full days and
nights in some of the most beautiful mountains in the world. I had spent
time running, hiking and talking with many wonderful people. I had been
encouraged and assisted by numerous wonderful people at every aid station. I
had spent many hours in solitude. I was fortunate to avoid problems severe
enough to force me to drop out. And I had completed the course on my own
terms. I had taken every step, I didn't give up on my goal even when it
became apparent that it was slipping away, and every decision during the run
was made in real-time to the best of my ability to get me safely to the
finish. I owned all of those decisions, I completed the course, and it was
personally the most satisfying and rewarding run that I have ever
participated in. All of the good things about my run completely overshadowed
the 71 seconds and the few missteps that I made in executing the run.
I didn't get my diploma, but I got a great education.
Congratulations to all Hardrock runners.
p.s. If anyone is interested in putting a face with my name, go to Ulli
Kamm's picture on Virginius Pass.
I'm on the left. Also pictured are Kevin Taverner, Ulli Kamm, and Susan
- For Randy Dunn
Congratulations, Randy. How I wish I could have been right behind you. ANY
finish at Hardrock is commendable. Last year, my time was 49:15. I was
unofficial but I was very happy, nonetheless. This year, I was a DNF and I
have been regretting it ever since I consented to letting them cut my wrist
band at Grouse.
- --- dunnrd <dunnrd@...> wrote:
> I was on track for finishing under the cutoff untilSounds familiar. In 1998 I finished unofficially in
> I went through the
> Maggie-Cunningham section on Sunday night. I got
> caught up in some personal
> mind games that went something like this:
> "Gee, it seems like there hasn't been a course
> marker for a while. Did I
> follow the course correctly at the last junction, or
> am I off course?
51:38. It was also my first experience going 2 nights
without sleep and made a series of mistakes that cost
me an official finish. This was a counterclockwise
year, in the "hard" direction with all the good roads
going uphill. I had run Western States 2 weeks
earlier, and due to the travel across NV and UT, only
had about 8 days of high altitude acclimation before
the race. I had no crew or pacer and did not put out
any drop bags.
I had planned to sleep the first night at the Ouray
aid station from whatever time I got there until
sunrise at 6:00 AM. That gave me 15 minutes on the
noisy, brightly lit concrete floor. In Telluride I
was surprised to see Joel Zucker, 2 days before he
died of a cerebral aneurism. He was complaining of a
severe migrane headache and was considering dropping,
but he did finish in 47:37, his best time.
Things started going badly at Grant-Swamp Pass while
it was still daylight. Ginny LaForme and I missed the
right turn onto the trail up to the 11,000 ft. shelf.
She insisted we passed it, and I insisted we didn't,
so we separated. She was right. I ended up
bushwacking up a waterfall and 45 degree slopes
covered with willows in a thunderstorm, losing about
an hour. I descended the pass in the dark with a 2 AA
maglite, very slowly on a strangely unfamiliar course,
stopping at each marker to find the next one. On the
Ice Lake trail, I missed the turnoff to the waterfall
crossing, bushwacking down a horribly steep slope
covered with deadfall and undergrowth, guided only by
the sound of the waterfall in complete darkness.
After the KT aid station (about 11 PM) I went 1/4 mile
past the Mineral Creek crossing on the jeep road, and
a volunteer ran after me to get me back on course.
A week earlier I had hiked the last section from KT to
Silverton. So why was it now that I didn't recognize
any part of the course? I knew it was the right way
because there were markers, but I sure didn't
recognize any of it. But once I reached the open
tundra fields near 13,000 ft at about 2 AM, there were
no more markers. Maybe they were blown down in the
storm, or pulled out by elk, or never placed because
of snow when the area was marked a week ago. But I
had a clear view of the surrounding terrain under a
full moon and clear skies. I got out my map, but
couldn't make sense of it. I spent 3 hours wandering
in circles, climbing hills for a better view, or
wandering over to the edge of cliffs to find
identifiable landmarks that would locate me on the
map. There was a large ridge to the east, perhaps
several miles away, but I couldn't match it with any
feature on the map. I had no idea it was the
Porcupine-Putnam ridge we were supposed to climb over,
less than a mile away.
I was alone, and it was 3 hours before the next
runner, Fred Vance caught up. He had finished Barkley
and would be running Badwater in 4 days (he would
finish), but here he had mild pulmonary edema and was
climbing very slowly at 13,000 ft. We found our way
as the sky got light. It was already after 6 AM when
we reached the Putnam aid station (present only in CCW
years) with 5 miles to go. Even though it was over,
we took the Nute Chute instead of the road, and
finished together at 9:38:34 AM after the awards had
I had not anticipated how sleep deprivation affects
your ability to think clearly with regard to
navigation and decision making. I wasn't even sleepy
on the second night - I was mad that I was lost. It
was only after the race that it hit me. I would close
my eyes while standing and fall asleep in 1 second,
only to awaken as I started to fall. I took an 8 hour
nap and slept 10 more hours that night in my tent.
In 1999 I took the unusual step of arranging for a
pacer for the last part of the course from Cunningham.
It turned out he couldn't keep up on the descent, and
I finished in 42:39 on 3 minutes sleep on the second
afternoon. I had better altitude acclimation that
year. In 2000 I had no pacer, but was careful to stay
with other runners during the night, and finished in
42:17. This year I finished in 45:00:03. I ran
really hard through town, trying to break 45 hours,
but I guess it could be worse.
-- Matt Mahoney, matmahoney@...
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