In my never ending quest to not embarrass myself at Western States, last weekend was spent running another part of the Angeles Crest 100 Trail. I’ve heard mixed opinions about the how comparable the two courses are (some say it’s easier, some say it’s harder), but since I don’t live near the WS100 course, this is the best I’m going to get. Regardless of how appropriate of a training venue it may be, the AC100 course is stunningly beautiful, and an absolute joy to run on, so that makes it completely worth it – even if I never become a trail goddess.
To get to the Mt. Wilson, you have to start in Eaton Canyon and climb to Henninger Flats. You might remember that Henninger Flats is where I have done repeats a few times. The climb is steeeeeeeeeeep, and shoots your heart rate through the roof, but it is a great workout.
From the bottom of Eaton Canyon, to Henninger Flats is about 4 miles. For today’s run, I was trying out my new Nathan Vest, so I didn’t need to get water at the campground. I checked the map and saw that I could do another 6-7 miles to the top of Mt. Wilson. I had to be home by 11:00, so I decided I would go as far as I could in 2:30 and then turn around.
Up, up, up I went. Climbing and climbing.
And loving every minute of it.
At about 6 miles, I came to a saddle that reminded me of something from the Sound of Music.
I thought about turning here, but I had a little more time, and I really wanted to see what was around the next bend. So up, up, up I went again.
Finally, at 2.5 hours I knew I needed to turn around if I was going to make it home. I still hadn’t made it all the way to the top, but I had seen some spectacular views and got miles and miles of straight climbing – and nothing ate me!
I finished the run with all limbs still attached, no bear or mountain lion sightings, and only one minor trip that didn’t even result in an injury. I consider that a very successful run!
And next weekend, I’m going to make it to the top!
What did you do this past weekend?