12 July 2010

Palouse Double

2 days. 2 states. 55 miles. 12,000+ feet of climbing. 12,000+ feet of descending. 14 hours of running.  The Palouse Double.

The idea of this low-key, local event is simple: two loop trails (4 mile loop on Saturday - 2.5 mile loop on Sunday); run/hike the loops as many times as you can/want within 7 hours.

Day 1 was run on a beautiful 4-mile loop on Moscow Mountain.  Each loop has about 650 feet of climbing.  My goal was to keep moving forward for the entire 7 hours.  My dad flew up for the weekend to participate as well.  We ran several miles together.  He's still recovering from his quadruple bypass from about 20 months ago, but he's getting into better shape and is planning to run a 50k this fall.  It's always a treasure to have some time on the trails with him.

Gathering before day 1 start
(Maniacs are everywhere)

I love this trail

My legs were still tired from last weekend's marathon, and I knew (hoped) I was going out for 7 hours the next day, so I made it a point to take it pretty easy.  Sadie ran with me all day too.  Lots of climbing, lots of descending, then all over again.  Temps were getting in the mid to upper 80's and I was feeling it, especially after 20 miles.  Most of the trail is under shade, but it was still hot and hot weather running is not something I get a lot of practice with up here.  But I trudged along and squeaked out 7 laps (28 miles) in just under 7 hours.  Got home, took a long ice bath, cooked up some fajitas, and drank beer.  It was so nice.  Even Sadie looked a little tired when we got home.

Sitting with Dad and Sadie after a long day on the trails

Day 2 scared me.  It was a shorter loop (2.5 miles), but in the first mile it climbs over 700 feet and it's a much more technical trail.  And half the loop is exposed to the hot sun.  I was surprised how well my legs felt when I woke up.  Either the ice bath worked a miracle on me, or I'm getting into pretty decent running shape.  Or both.  I felt good, but the thought of running that loop for 7 hours still scared me.

It's all smiles...until after a loop

Amazing views on this one mile stretch along the ridge

Sun and dust and rocks and trail running

This day was an exercise in mental stamina.  It was nice having an aid station every 2.5 miles, but it became increasingly difficult to start the next loop.  And it was much hotter today, so much so that after 4 laps and 10 miles I called it a day for Sadie and leashed her up at the aid station in some shade with a bowl of ice water.  She wanted to keep going, and probably would have even if it hurt her, but I didn't want to take a chance.  She got 38 miles with me in two days and I'm sure she's happy about that.

I pushed through and completed 27 miles in the 7-hour time limit.  I was happy with this.  And about as tired as I've been in a long time.  Home. Food. Water. Water. Water.  Quite a weekend.

Let's see if I can get my legs ready for the White River 50 at the end of the month.  (I know, I said I wasn't going to sign up for any more races this year...this is that last one, I promise.)

Keep running!



  1. I reckon Sadie must be the dog world record holder in endurance running.

    Sounds like a great event and I've just decided to organise another run with my dad!

  2. Dude, you're a nut, but you do, indeed keep running. In that last pic, I think even Sadie is saying, oh dear GAWD! not again :-)

  3. WOW!! That's totally incredible! Congrats to you (and your dad :) ).

  4. You were pretty high up. I find it very interesting that your dad is doing a 50k, wow!

    join me on the Path to the Summit

  5. A weekend running with your Dad and your ultra dog Sadie. What more could you ask for?

  6. It was a fun race weekend. Nice job, race director.

  7. 80 degrees is the coolest temp we can run in around here right now, so you won't get sympathy from me on that one. :)

    I would have loved to run with y'all for this one. Maybe we can make a travel trade off. You come down and do the Rocky Raccoon with us next year and we'll fly up and do a trail race with you???

    We're looking forward to *trying* to run while we're in Colorado, but I'm a bit nervous about the altitude. Advise about getting used to it?

  8. Yes, Sadie is a special little dog.

    Jen -- I don't think Houston has anything on the heat we get up here. ;)

    Not sure if I can make Rocky next year with Chile and Boston on my schedule. But I'd love to.

    Nothing to be nervous about running in CO. You might feel more out of breath during your first run...just take it easy and you'll get used to it son enough. If you were racing then you might feel it much more. Drink lots of water.

  9. you and sadie are both machines! great job out there! now rest up for the next one.

  10. Scott nice run and a ton more climb and descend than I saw at Rattlesnake...impressive effort and great photos.

  11. Great job running and running the event.

  12. That dog is amazing. And I love how you are "getting into pretty decent running shape". Yah! I'd say so!

    Nice going.

    And your Dad is remarkable, though you certainly don't need me to tell you that.

  13. 14 hours running, you and dad (+ Sadie) don't have limits! Congrats.

  14. fun! i so would have been there!

  15. First off - UNREAL with your sub 3hr marathon. FREAKING SWEET MAN!!!

    Sadie is simply an amazing dog and sure loves the trails as much as you. So glad your dad joined you for some of the race. What a true treat!

  16. Nice Event, wish Tess and me could have given it a go!
    Great running :]

  17. Now that is certainly a very unusual running event - or two.

  18. Your dad is a beast! So are you and Sadie, but way to pick it up after a quadruple bypass, Mr. Dad Keeps Running!

    Nice job on your blazing fast marathon as well...very rad.

  19. What a great race, 50+ miles in a weekend and over 12,000 feet of climbing that sounds CRAZY hard! Very cool that your dad was able to come and run with you.