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Good news racers, Chamois Butt’r will be donating some “Butt’r” for everyone at our races. Hurray! No chafing! If you don’t usually use chamois cream, consider using it to reduce the likelihood of toe blisters! Mike puts it on his toes before every race. He never gets toe blisters because of it!
We went up to Littleton, CO for a bit of orienteering training with the Rocky Mountain Orienteering Club. It was their last meet of 2010 at Chatfield State Park so we definitely wanted to participate. We all took a turn at the different roles of navigating and was a lot of fun! RMOC’s orienteering maps are top notch. We may be using some of them for our maps for our events.
Yeah, we had to run across a river three times. Adventurous!
Planet Bike really came through by providing lots of sweet gear for the race prizes and raffle giveaways! Racers, there’s a lot of good stuff here! Get ready to win some awesome stuff!
Our 2010 adventure racing season was a blast of cold water met face-on on a river board, intimidation during a rope traverse hovering above a cliff, excitement flying down a steep downhill mountain-biking run, and best of all teamwork with an amazing team whose bond has grown with every race. Our best moment…? Perhaps running from an angry bear who didn’t appreciate that our navigation strategy led us unnervingly close to his prized territory. Luckily that checkpoint was bagged just seconds before our best sprint efforts were put to the test… wait, should we have made tall and waved our hands?…turns out none of us wanted to test that approach. Overall our first year team, racing as LifeQuest Boulder Running Company, and consisting of a core team of two girls and two guys, had a great time growing as a team. Many things had changed from our first race as independent racers on a team trudging up a tough hill, to a team linked together on a bike towing system conquering several gruesome 2000 feet elevation gain climbs. We battled through some tight illiotibial bands, muscle spasms, one separated shoulder, and a whole lot of memorable adventures to land our third place finish in the Adventure Xstream Racing series this year.
The comradery and post training beers gave us inspiration to also host some of our own 2011 races for our fellow Front Rangers and adventure racing enthusiasts wanting to enjoy the beauty of the front range…in muddy shoes and biking shorts of course. October marks the end of our 2010 racing season and the beginning of our new endeavor, Big Mountain Adventure. The goals for our BMA races include combining adventure, athleticism, multi-sport skills with strategy, while also incorporating environmental cleanup challenges to help build a strong, environmentally friendly racing community.
Got adventure…? Get some! For more information, please visit our website at: http://www.BigMountainAR.com
Gabi and I recently discovered Fox Run Regional Park. It’s a nice run with rolling hills and great place to do some interval training. It also looks like a great place to do some orienteering practice or AR training… Hmm… :)
Course scouting this weekend reminded me that I wanted to share a fun thing and a not so fun thing about hosting adventure races.
Fun thing: Course Scouting! It’s kinda neat making ourselves go to new places with a purpose other than our own fun or training in mind.
Not so fun thing: obtaining land use permits. That is all. :)
Course Scouting for Rampart RAGE Adventure Race 2011
Just got the Visors and 40% off coupons from GoLite for the BMARE competition and they are sweet! Get your trash-scouting skills honed over the winter, racers, because come the Rock2Rock, the competition is on!
Tony, Mike, and Gabi headed up the incline on Tuesday for a bit of cardio training. The Manitou Incline is a 0.9 miles long hiking trail that gains a heart pounding 2100′ of elevation! The incline once served people who wanted to travel up Mt. Manitou using a tram to enjoy the beautiful view looking toward the plains and city of Colorado Springs. In the early 1990′s, the incline operation closed but the path and ties remain, and over time it become a popular spot for hikers, Olympic trainers or anyone serious about getting into shape.
After making our way up the incline we ran down the 3 miles of Barr Trail back to the parking lot. It was getting dark since the sun is setting earlier these days, so we ended up walking the last 1/2 mile or so.
The team took the weekend off to camp between Buena Vista and Salida. While we were there we did a few ‘trainings’. First, we played around with a zipline in the campground. We didn’t leave home thinking we were going to set one up so we really didn’t have the right equipment but we gave it a try anyway. Our mechanical system worked very well, but overall this setup failed miserably. Some important lessons were learned however:
- Zip lines are very difficult to setup using dynamic climbing rope!
- You need more tension than you think. Setup your mechanical system much closer to the middle of the active rope than you think
- You need more angle than you think due to the sag in the active rope
On Saturday we hiked up Mt. Harvard, a Colorado 14er at 14,420′. The hike was 13.5 miles with 4,600′ elevation gain. The hike and the views were beautiful and we thoroughly enjoyed the day. However, we did underestimate how long the hike would be and ran out of water on the way down. Luckily our Aquamira Frontier Pro filters came to the rescue and provided up a quick 4 liters of cool, refreshing mountain stream water to get us the rest of the way down.
Sunday we tried the zipline again but lowered our expectations to maybe actually making a tyrolean traverse. We stopped by The Trailhead store in Buena Vista and picked up a semi-static rope to try to fix our tensioning problems. This time the whole endeavor went much better, but still no zip in our zipline. About half of it was an easy traverse though! More lessons learned:
- Even a semi-static rope stretches A LOT
- Starting further down the active rope helps, but keep going even further than you think
- We still need more tension than we think
- We still need more angle than we think
- There’s a reason why ziplines are off of cliffs and have angles that make you want to crap your pants. That angle is necessary for zip and the active line will sag and slow you down at the end of the ride.
- It takes multiple readjustments to the tension of the active line as the active line is being used. Every person that uses it stretches it a little bit more. Even just sitting there for hours makes it stretch somewhat.
Also on Sunday Tony took his family and Gabi’s brother Alex on a short rafting trip down the Arkansas River. Lastly- Mike, Tony, and Gabi practiced on the Arkansas River a little in hardshell playboat kayaks. We suck! We need more instruction from our own kayaking expert Chelsea, but she and James had to leave . We all had a blast but unfortunately we have no pictures of the river activities.