11 October 2011

Mt. Spokane 50k - race report

I had a great time at the first annual Mt. Spokane 50k put on by Rainshadow Running. Great trails, spectacular views, and really good fall weather. It was cold at the start, but it's been way colder (and snowier) on this same weekend in previous years, so I wasn't complaining...much.

The course started off with a little climb and some awesome sections of xc-skiing trails. Nice and gently rolling. Ran into a friend who took the early start. And then a plunge down the mountain.

I ran the first 17 or so miles with another Scott (we carpooled up together). He pushed my pace early on a little more than I had probably planned to push it, but it was good for me. :)  The trails just didn't want us to go any slower they we were going. (And I was geeking out about my new shoes, so I had a little extra bit of adrenaline early on.)

It seems the more beautiful a course is, the more deceptively challenging it can be. When the views are photo-worthy and the trails are welcoming and the colors are spanning the entire spectrum, it's easy to get lost in the moment(s), but by mile 20 I got hit with a not-so-gentle reminder in my legs that I've been running and climbing for a few hours.

The summit of Mt. Spokane was the highpoint of the course, but from the starting line it didn't look like it was going to be that tough of a climb. But if you look at the elevation profile below, you can see that there was a bit of descending before we got to climb up to the top, and that it gets a tad steep near the top. My legs felt pretty strong most of the day, and even on the really steep stuff I felt I was able to keep a decent power-hike pace.

Did I mention the views were awesome? I bring a camera on just about every run I go on, no matter how short or far (never know what awesome photo-op there might be), but this was one of those runs where I was particularly glad to have my camera. Sometimes a race isn't so important that it's not worth stopping for a couple minutes to take some photos. :)

I eventually finished too. 5th place overall -- results.

Enjoy some images from Mt. Spokane:

Mt. Spokane 50k elevation profile.

Gathering at the start. Mt. Spokane in the background.

This view greeted us at the top of our first climb.

Top of first climb too. The clouds were amazing all day.

Cruising with the other Scott about 8 miles in.
(Photo by Candice Burt)

Some sweet single-track.

More juicy trail.

Some rocky bits too.

Brooks' new Pure Grit. This is their new lightweight trail shoe.
Love them.

From the summit of Mt. Spokane.

View coming down the summit.

Looking back up to the summit and the beautiful wildflowers.

Finished in 5:23:21.

Where's my beer?

Sadie didn't get to run this one, but
she wasn't mad at me for too long.

My calendar is quiet for the rest of the year. I'll probably throw in a few more local races when they come up. And I'm going to try to get to the mountains with Sadie as much as I can before the snow hits hard.

Keep running!



  1. Wow! Your time sure is a LOT faster than the slow 50k we made you run last October. :) Great job! And great views!

  2. I'll run a slower-than-I-normally-might run with you anyday, Mel. :)

  3. Hey Scott...it was nice running with you on the trails.(thanks for slowing down) Congrats on the 5th overall, and yes it was a tough course. Great pics, I missed the wildflowers. I think I was delirious at that point.

  4. Awesome run, Scott! I am glad those Grits worked so well! I can't wait to work myself into mine... Beautiful pictures!

  5. 5th place is fantastic, congratulations! Love the photos, especially the one coming down and the flowers on the summit. Beautiful.

  6. Fantastic;
    did you say 5th place! Wow!
    trail shoes
    Epic ;0]
    p's' i've got Tess on a Lydiard training plan after only one week she has so much energy she thinks she's a pup again, maybe it will have the same effect on me!
    Keep On Running

  7. Wow, beautiful pictures!!! Congrats on the 5th place finish, too - that is amazing!

  8. i'm glad sadie forgave you. congrats on 5th place, that's amazing! and once again, the pics are beautiful!

  9. Awesome that you got 5th place! That was very fast. And I like the new shoes!

    Lisa H.

  10. Love the clouds in the summit pic. Nice job to both Scotts!

  11. As usual, great work out there. YOu and Sadie have some great adventures!

  12. Beautiful places to run. As usual great pics. congrats for the 5th place.

  13. These may be the best photos from one of your races yet. Great race as well. Good job! The shoes look good :)