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Saturday, February 19, 2011

Big Baz WTRS 21k

Rain poured down upon us all night, waking me every couple of hours.  I said out loud, “Boy am I in trouble.”

2:55 AM, I lay in bed, wide awake.  Finally, I made it out to the couch where I slept until 5:45.  Thankfully, the rain had ceased.  First thing I did (after brewing coffee) was check weather.com.  The website reported rain all day, except for partly cloudy skies between 8:00 AM and noon.  Exactly what I needed.

I will try to make a long story short (because I did after all, make a video).  The weather was cold in Blue Jay Campground.  Runners bundled up in winter running gear.  I couldn’t decide:  wear or pack?  After much debate, I finally decided to pack warmth in my hydration pack, because I figured I would rather put on than take off during the race.

I saw quite a few running friends, and some running friends were absent.  I was especially happy to see Lori, whom I haven’t seen in so long (unfortunately, the photo I snapped of us, didn’t turn out, but she’s the girl wearing back in front of me in a portion of the video).

Oh yes, I wrote that I’d make this short.  Well, in short, Horse Thief Trail was hell.  PURE HELL.  I kept up pretty well with “my” group up until nearly the top of that trail.  My energy temporarily drained, that’s when I lost them.  I was utterly wiped out at the top of Horse Thief that I had to stop at the aid station there.  The guys at the station asked how I liked Horse Thief.  I told them, I didn’t much like it at all (though the views were gorgeous.)  The ranger said I had just missed the snow flurries (bummer) as I stood there gulping down their cold, cold water.  I got brain freeze drinking their supply before taking off again. 

I can’t tell you the relief I felt passing the last aid station with only 2.5 miles remaining.  I was quite cold, but didn’t want to stop to take out a warm shirt.  I thought to myself, just easy-going from here (mistake – never think that!)  And then out of the corner of my eyes, I saw her!  There was a woman gaining on me.  And behind her, another woman.  Where did they come from?  I hadn’t seen anyone for a long time.

“SH**!” I said.  And I had enough energy to kick it in, keeping my pace at around a 9 minute mile for the remainder of the way.  My motivation:  I had already accepted my place in the race.  (Races with about 100 runners, basically all trail races, I have a pretty good idea how many runners are behind me).  Anyway, if these two women passed me, or even one of them, well – heck, I suppose I don’t have to explain.  I was a little disappointed for lollygagging it back when I was all by myself.  

Well, I made sure the two women didn’t pass me by focusing hard on the trail (didn’t want to fall) and focusing on the garmin.  And I crossed the finish line smiling. Smile

Conserving Energy Going Up San Juan Trail


Going Up Horse Thief Trail


Aid at Top of Horse Thief


Lake Elsinore View from Main Divide


Baz’s Raffle


Elevation Profile:  + 3051 ft. & Video Below

My Activities Big Baz 21k 2-19-2011, Elevation - Distance

Cleveland National Forest

Upon reaching home, it pretty much rained the remainder of the day.

p.s.  I kept up with my target a good long while, almost to the top of Horse Thief, then he took off like a thief in the night!


  1. Hey Lauren way to go! That is an awesome race to do and glad you dropped those 2 women at the end!
    I also see you hung out a little bit with Doug Malewicki (1st pic). That guy is great and helped me through my first trail race ever up there with Baz...
    Happy to see you finish strong!

  2. Nice to meet you Lauren on Saturday. Wish I could have kept up with you and Doug. I need to do Horse Thief a few more times. Thanks for doing the videos. See you again.

  3. I did this race last year and *loved it*!!! Finishing is quite the accomplishment. If anyone gives you grief, just send them up Horsethief!

  4. Hi Rich! Long time no see : ) Thanks for reading. That race was a blast. But I really gotta make it back to Horsethief again. It nearly did me in!

  5. Nice to meet you too Jeremy. You look a lot younger in person (that's why I didn't recognize you, because I had read your blog). I lost Doug at mile 7 (or rather he lost me : ). I need to do Horsethief a lot more times. I thought nothing could compare to Holy Jim, but now I know! Are you running Baz's 50k next week?

  6. Tell me about it Glenn! I died of a broken heart a thousand times (my husband's words), because so many times I thought each turn in that switch-back was near the end. But I was so, so far. Then when I could finally see the top! I couldn't believe it. When Doug came up behind me and said "Twelve minutes to go," I wanted to collapse on the spot!