Saturday, May 15, 2010

Squaw Peak 50 Mile Trail Race Prequel

I summarized all the Squaw Peak 50 race information into one short document so I could have everything in one place. This may also be helpful to other racers who come across my blog. It will save me time when writing up my race report, because I can refer to all the basic info here.

Sat. June 5, 2010 - 5:00AM @ Vivian Park, Provo Canyon
270 Runners
Long sleeve T-shirt for all participants and medals to all finishers.

PRE RACE BRIEFING AND DINNER: Complimentary pasta dinner, Friday Night, June 4th from 5:00 to 7:30PM to all entrants, all others - $5.00 pre-paid. $10.00 at the door. Pre race briefing and packet pickup will begin at around 6:30 PM. I know these times might be early but I want to give everyone time to get home and get some sleep. The dinner will be at the Host Hotel - Hampton Inn & Suites, just south across the street from UVSC. Please make every effort to be at the pre race briefing. Saturday morning will not be the time for a lot of questions. Post race BBQ at Vivian Park. Entrants free, all others $5.

COURSE: It is a very challenging and scenic loop course through the Wasatch Mountains. It consists of - dirt trails (43%), dirt roads (38%) and some paved (19%). The paved sections are: The first 2.1 miles from the start at Vivian Park down the Provo River Trail to the first Aid Station. Then at the 22.7 mile mark, for 3.7 miles when you come out onto the Hobble Creek Road, and the last 3.7 down to the finish.

There is over 10,000+/- ft. of elevation gain and loss, with 5 major climbs varying from 1100 ft to nearly 3000 ft. The first starts at mile 2.1. A series of climbs takes you up 2700 ft. over 5 miles to an overlook of Squaw Peak. The last and most difficult climb takes you from the top of Berryport Canyon to the high point of the course, just before Windy Pass at about 9300 ft.

*NOTE* There can be sections of the course that are covered with snow. At about mile 11 after passing Rock Canyon, for about 2+ miles and then the sections approaching Windy Pass ('9000) for about 4 miles and the next 2 after the pass. About a mile after coming off the pass there are a couple of areas where you cross the snow that are fairly steep and can be un-nerving for some people.

AID, CUT-OFF TIMES and DROP BAGS: There are 10 Aid Stations varying from about 3 to 7 miles apart: Water, Powerade, fruit, candy, pretzels, cookies, sandwiches, crackers, chips, potatoes, salt, etc. Medical at start, finish, and at mile 33.5 (Little Valley aid station #8)

There is a 2:30 PM cut-off time at AS# 8. This is a safety cut-off to allow the back of the pack runners enough time to get over the back country and most difficult part of the course before it gets dark at around 9:30. THERE IS NO FINAL CUT-OFF TIME

(This means I must cover the first 33 miles in 9.5 hours. That’s a 17:00 average pace. Certainly not impossible. After that I’m free to crawl to the finish line as slowly as I like.)


Location Mileage Elevation
Start 0.00 5194
Hope CG 5.587 6675
Rock Canyon 10.853 7695
Kolob Overlook 14.629 8527
Pole Heaven Gate 20.943 5775
Left Fork 26.051 5716
Sheep Creek 29.987 6645
Little Valley 33.528 7128
Windy Pass 41.499 8923
Finish 50.861 5194

Drop bags (check in by 4:30am) and pacers are allowed at Aid Stations 3 through 8 and 10. Crew has access to most of the course. The only access to miles 34-46 are on foot.

(Blaine agreed to pace me towards the end of the race. I’m going to have him waiting for me at aid station #8, the cutoff. If I don’t make it in time, he can console me as we head back to the start. If I make it before 2:30, his job is to make me keep going no matter what I say or look like. My goal is to try and finish before 12 hours. Last year’s winner finished in 8:05. The last person to cross the finish line took over 19 hours. If I keep that 17 minute pace for the entire race, it will take me 14 hours.)

Put your name, race #, and aid station # on your bags. Take drop bags to location "a" and put them along the guard rail according to the aid station signage! #8 gets the most drop bags. Please keep there size as small as possible and only what you absolutely need.

PARKING: Do not park in lots A, B, and C. We need to save these spaces for your family and friends when they come up later in the day! Do NOT park along the highway until the parking areas 1, 2, and 3 in white are full and you are instructed to do so.

Begin parking in the area 1, then 2, and finally area 3. Once the white area is full, parallel park next in green area 4. Then when instructed park in blue area 5 at an angle and from left to right. Again please park as close as possible. DON'T WASTE SPACE! If needed, park in green 6 area along Highway.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Cinco de Mayo 5K

I participated in the inaugural ScenicView Cinco de Mayo 5K race last week. For a first time race, it was really well put together. They capped the field at 240 runners and had to turn people away. That's good marketing. I normally don't get to run 5K's, but this one started at 6:00 pm in the evening, on a week night.

The Three Amigos. That's not a fake background. It's Utah.

Most of the racers opted to wear the technical t-shirt they gave us. I stand out in black on the left side of the photo below.

You may notice a few runners wearing Mexican wrestling masks.

The course was a little short of 5K, so my time was better than usual: 19:39. Good enough for 8th place if you don't count the bandit runner who came in 5th. We covered trails and surface streets in the Riverwoods area of Provo.

Coming into the finish line

It shouldn't come as a surprise that none of the top 10 finishers were wearing the race t-shirt. You might as well be wearing a sign that reads "I got forced into this race and haven't been training".

Along with the chips & salsa, fruit, and tres leches, they also had margaritas. Virgin of course.

I placed first in the 30-39 age group, scoring a pair of VIP passes to the Hale Theater in addition to the 2 tickets to see To Kill A Mockingbird that everyone got in their goodie bag. Rubio's was a sponsor, and I got coupons for 4 free tacos as well.

Like I said, great race from start to finish. I'd also like to give a shout out to Ashley Crist for taking some cool shots during the race. These photos all came from her site.