Hardrock 100 Race Report
What suspens when the list was given by the race director and I not found my name in master list, but i was in fourth place on the never start list. However in 2013, it was not the same operation as in other years. There was a single waiting list during the last three years and now there is one waiting list according to various criteria (already participated already registered without being caught, and never registered with the HR 100) ... All this to say that I will have to wait a little ... or a lot ...
Hope is born in early June when I moved into first place, I began to be very reserved, despite small changes there at the moment. I still say that I need to believe and my motivation in training is being undermined. It is always difficult to say that we train but perhaps for nothing ... even if it was never really for nothing.
I take the plane to the small town of Silverton, after passing through New York, Denver and finally Durango. After an hour's drive on the 550 road and two pass at 3400m above sea level, I finally arrived in the famous town of Silverton.
I've been here 24 hours and I already feel the effects of altitude in my slightest movement. We are the 29th of June and I still have not a bib but I'll still attack the reco of the race. I did not come here for nothing and I think it may be for the next year and I have to use up the trip. I quickly realize that the paths in the area are not very simple and a 4X4 is needed. I found a French friend that has already run this race four times and knows the course of the fingertips. Jean François Geiss is a regular and we meet after making contact over the Internet. For a few days he will guide me and help me in the end of my preparation. It truly master the subject and all information that will bring me during my various recognitions will help me to achieve my race, if there is proof ...
I spend days and finally on July 4, the day of the American national holiday, I hear a message from Dale, I win a place of the waiting list and I just switch to main list . YESSS I have my number and I am very happy to finally have a good reason to have done all this preparation, the trip and the various recce ... Despite all that I think that this race is going to be complicated and the end of my preparation of the last nine days must be perfect if I want to finish it and to have no regrets.
The last day before the race is pretty standard with rest and preparation before the race. What I like is that the departure is early in the morning after a good night's rest, as I used at home. This usually serves as my reference points and avoids often to ask questions. On the eve of the race, everything accelerates with various medical examinations where there is all old Hardrockers. This is a small community and I love the atmosphere to back to basics, to simple things, and everything in my heart I remember why I started this sport long time ago. It really allows me to feel vibrations that led me there are a dozen of years back ...
The big day has finally arrived and the sun rises in the small town of Silverton Colorado. It's a long day ahead for all of us but we are super motivated. We are together on what is the line of departure and arrival and just before the launch of this beautiful edition, we have a young girl of fifteen years who climb on the rock of the Hardrock 100, we sing the American anthem and we wish us good luck. Latest recommendations of Dale and go ... it's such a hard test and atypical that we go to 12 or 13 km / hour, it is very cool and with Joe we take a few meters advances.. While the beginning is not very hilly nasty trail that allows us to put ourselves in the legs. I feel good physically but ventilation level is bad... The first Miles go quietly with a lot of walking on the climbs and talking with Joe he told me that when Karl has established a record of the event he had walked all the climbs.
First refreshment after 15 kilometers and the first time I see my wife Isabel who has the habit of doing my supplies. We have access to three other supplies but very difficult to access for people who make you refueling. The move to Sherman is the road more than 40 kilometers and is fueling the 46th kilometer of the race. This is not worth it and I preferred to leave a deposit bag in the Sherman's drop bag, like everyone else. During this part of the course, with Joe I will have a guided tour and we will be entitled to incredible encounters. We took a little more forward and it allows us to manage our forces and supplies.
When we enter Continental Divine Trail, he explains that this is the path that cuts the United States of America in two and is the boundary between East and West. At this time, there are animals that provides us with a succession of incredible encounters. First of all we see a couple of beautiful and majestic eagles, ensues a herd of deer and elks (of the deer family, but twice as big) and there is a first group of 35 40 individuals.
We arrive at the 47th kilometer of the Sherman side and there after a relatively short supply of 2 'we hit the road and head towards Burrows Park which is the sign of starting the ascent of the famous Peak Handies perched over 4300m altitude. This is the highest point of the race and I always fear this climb very hard, not technically but physically tiring. We have a good pace and I set 1:15 to climb to the top and achieve the 1200 +.
After a short stop at the top of Handies Peak to enjoy the view and empty the contents of our shoes and socks we hit the road for the passage in a small bowl and immediately ascended to American Pass. Cameras and photographers were waiting us and I think this is certainly one of the most beautiful places in the course. We pass a small pass and we switch to the second refueling point where I will find Isa and a whole bunch of people came to encourage us. During the descent I feel that Joe is worried and I can not find out why. In fact he told me that for a while he stops to pee but that is not very nice and it starts to get a little blood in the urine. He drinks regularly, but despite that he is worried and rightly so because the kidneys are sensitive organs and increases with altitude and dehydration that does not help matters too. We arrive at the refueling Grouse Gulch and then we expect a lot of people to encourage us and full of strong riders and future Pacers. We can find Krissy Moehl (double winner of the UTMB) Anton Krupicka, Dakota Jones, Scott Jureck, and many others ...
We leave with Joe and i will make regular stops to the top and wait for him for do not leave it alone. I rock at the top and attack the Engineer descent quietly saying he will join me before refueling but not at all. He told me that I should do my race and that he does not really know how will happen after the events for him and he does not need me to wait. I know this is an important moment in the race because we are battery-hair in the middle and then it's back down to Ouray where we attendes the Pacers. So I took the decision to go quiet until Ouray lowest point of the race but also the hottest point. This part is tricky because there not technically very hard but with a succession of crossings canyons and streams.
The passage of Bear Creek is incredible, it is a path balcony 1.50m wide on the edge of the cliff and this for nearly five kilometers. I finally see the city of Ouray but I know I am not yet arrived and I have to keep quiet because the road is still long. My entry in Ouray is rather quiet and only those interested in the race are waiting to the refueling. It is a strategic location because it is the end of the day I go into the night a few hours, I'm halfway, I get my Pacer Scott, and I know the next game will put me mentally challenged because it is a track bottom land for almost 13 kilometers ... After a good stop and a lot of information of the followers, i learn that Joe decided to stop and I lost a lot of time on my expectations to rise and descent (waiting for Joe but I do not regret at all). I leave with my Pacer. Throughout the mandatory track 13 kilometers Scott puts me and the information we have at this time reinforce my belief that he should not hang out for the night will be long and the second runner has the rider Dakota Jones as Pacer.
It is a challenge in the adventure that is looming on the horizon, or rather at dusk, we will have to keep pace or even accelerate because we are on the basis of record of Karl despite feeling also no longer be fresh physically . We spend Virginus Pass and its last few hundred meters of ascent to 4 feet on land and we start the descent of Telluride. It's really nice and we light our lamps just the last few meters to climb Pass. Then a nice downhill and we expect the transition to Telluride down is still a point well organized party. I feel a mixture of fatigue and stress and raises motivation and encouragement permanant Scott reminds me that I have only slowed down and that to do this run with him is a great opportunity to spend time together. The last climbs are steep and we see the lights behind us...
Taking Wasatch trail we estimate about ten minutes away with our rivals but we remain focused and I always do the same reflection on the fact that if they come back is that they are simply stronger and it is in the order of things. We leave with a little balm to the heart because we attacked well in the Oscar's Pass and during this ultra technical descent we took almost 20min to our pursuers. No reason to stop too long to Chapman and soon we leave for the next summit of Grant-Swamp Pass which is technical. I took my sticks to spend the last two summits, as fatigue sets in and I prefer to use them to continue to give me the pace. Grant-Swamp Pass being spent we make the descent to KT and Scott continues to stimulate me mentally.
We go through a few rain-swollen rivers of the night and we tackle the last summit which is not easy because very steep and in three successive ascents. This is where I feel that Scott getting tired because this time it's me who sets the pace. After the last descent we took to the river announcing the last three kilometers. I remain focused on the beam of my lamp. The first few hundred meters from the descent are very steep. I have not left my membrane jacket for a while and daybreak will not fix things.
Well I finished my story of race anyway, and after this beautiful descent, we arrive at the famous river crossing again a little swollen by rain that night. Rapid passage of water up to their knees, some cries of encouragement from Scott to tell us a few hundred meters before reaching the cries of our supporters and support, Isa is there and we leave this marshy area to cross the road. I no longer watch and I do not know what time it is but I guess, according to the support that the record is still possible ... I still have three kilometers and I force myself despite two bumps on the end to run and to have no regrets. Final passage on the heights of the small town of Silverton before switching to the last downhill and enter the final stretch leading us to the rock that I can finally kiss.
Hardrock 100, specifications:
- 160kms 10000D+, elevation average 3400m
- 12th of July, Silverton
Results Hardrock 100:
2012: Hal Koerner
2011: Julien Chorier
2010: Jared Campbell
2009: Karl Meltzer
2008: Kyle Skaggs
Hardrock 100 2013
Ranking Hardrock 100
1st Sébastien Chaigneau, 24h25, recordman
2nd Troy Howard, 25h20
3rd Scott Jaime, 26h38
photo Des Bosses et Des Bulles