Saturday, March 01, 2008

Saturday Training Run - Bailey Canyon to Mt. Wilson Loop

Today, I ran what I call the Bailey Canyon Loop - long version. It was an epic day with three sustained climbs, it totaled about 26 miles and 8,600 feet of elevation gain. I started at Bailey Canyon Park in Sierra Madre and went up to Jones Peak. Then I took the left fork at the Crossover trail sign and climbed up to Hastings Peak. Past the peak, the trail continued up a steep ridge and took me to the Mt. Wilson Toll Road. I then headed up the Toll Road past Mt. Harvard to Mt. Wilson's Skyline Park. Then I went down the Sturtevant Trail behind the observatory to Sturtevant Camp. Past the camp, I followed the Gabrilino Trail along Little Santa Anita Canyon to Chantry Flats. From Chantry, I took the Upper Winter Creek Trail and climbed back up to the Benches. Then I descended the Mt. Wilson Trail down to Orchard Camp. About another senven tenth of a mile past the camp, I went up the unmarked Jones Crossover trail. This trail lead me back to Bailey Canyon Trail, completing the loop. My car was then just at the bottom of the Bailey Canyon Trail.

The day started with me getting to the Bailey Canyon trail head at about 6:15 AM. Upon arrival, I was surprised that the parking lot was almost full. Apparently, there was a boy scout camp-out and they had stayed the night in tents. As the trail went right through where they had set up their camp, I ran past a whole bunch of blurry eyed kids trying to figure out how to eat breakfast. Luckily, they were already awake and I didn't have to sneak around their tents trying not to wake them up.

It was pretty gloomy when I started. The sky was overcast. The marine layer was very thick and even precipitated into a slight drizzle. It wasn't very cold, but I decided to wear arm warmers, which turned out to be a great choice, as the temperature went up and down through out the route. When it got warm, I pulled the arm warmers down; and when it got cold, I kept them up. I love arm warmers! The climb up Bailey Canyon was steep. I had forgotten how steep this thing was, as the last time I went up this trail was about 13 months ago. It climbed 2,400 feet in 3 miles. I was felling very strong, so I ran part of the way up to Jones Peak. The marine layer was so thick that I didn't have a lot of visibility. The cool misty scenery cast a different tone on the mountains and gives you a slightly different perspective on the surroundings.

As I went past the Crossover trail sign, I noticed that the marine layer was starting to clear. Well, actually, it was not clearing, but I was gaining altitude and going above it. As I power hiked up to Hastings Peak, I saw sunshine and crystal blue skies. Suddenly, it got very warm. The 360 degree panorama of the sea of white clouds washing up against the mountain canyons was a sight to behold. Distant peaks poked through the white blanket of heavy moisture and looked like islands. I wished I had brought a camera. Next time, I will!

The trail continued its steep ascent past Hastings Peak and snaked its way along the ridge to end at the Toll Road. These trails are unmarked and nameless. Once I got to the Toll Road, I started running again until the Mt. Wilson Trail junction, where I stopped a bit for a break and ate some food. As I sat down on my favorite rock, I noticed that behind it someone had stashed a gallon of water and a cookie tin with duct tape to seal it. I was tempted to open the tin to see what's inside, but I didn't do it. I thought it would be a good idea to build a locker at that location so that everyone can stash stuff, as it was a very key spot for rest and refueling.

After my brief rest, I continued running up the Toll Road until Mt. Harvard, where the ascent turned off the fireroad and took yet another unmarked trail up to Skyline Park. Up to this point, I had not seen anyone around, hiker or runner. I figure that it was still early and no one was up yet. I got up to Skyline park and refilled my water and electrolytes. On today's run, I had been using a liquid nutrition from Hammer called Perpetuem. I think liquid nutrition is definitely easier to digest. At this point, I had reached the highest elevation on my route, the climb from Bailey Canyon Park up to Skyline Park was about 5,000 feet in 7 miles. Nice!

I saw some people around the observatory; finally, there are people! These long trail runs can really play with your head some times. For a few hours, it felt like I was the only person alive. I went around behind the telescopes and continued down the Sturtevant Trail. All that remained of the heavy snow from a few weeks ago was a few patches here and there. Downhill trail running is my favorite part of the whole ultra running experience. I flew effortlessly down the rock and root strewn path of dirt,
dogging rocks by carefully placing my feet or hopping from boulder to boulder. It was a dance with nature. The trail was my partner, my stride and arm swing was the rhythm, and the sound of wind rushing past my face was the music. It got really cold as I descended back into the marine layer. But I felt great and was going fast, the downhill legs were fresh and the energy high. As I concentrated on the trail, I got into a zone. I was energized mentally and previously cloudy issues became crystal clear in my mind. It was truly therapeutic.

The hikers were out in force as I got near Sturtevant Camp and Chantry Flats. I can tell that many of them don't get out into the woods a lot. I was thinking to myself, "what's the matter with them, don't they know how great the outdoors are?" I guess I'm biased. :) But, at least, they come out once in a while. As I started the climb up to Chantry, I had done 7 miles of downhill running. Now, it was time to climb again. I refilled my hydration a second time at Chantry as some passers by stared at me. For what reason, I don't know. May be I looked like a crazy runner. I power walked the climb up to the benches. This climb shoots up for about 3,000 feet in 6 miles. This is roughly the same climb as in the AC100, where it comes at 75 miles into the 100 mile race.

Once I got up to the benches, I stopped and sat on the benches with some other hikers to share a few moments of the view. I think they spoke Korean so I didn't stay long. Quickly, I headed down the Mt. Wilson Trail into Orchard Camp. That downhill was very steep and technical as my quads got a good workout. As I went beyond Orchard Camp and started up the canyon where the Crossover trail was, I stopped to move some tree branches to block a way that could easily be mistaken as the trail. I head noise behind me, I turned around and it was Carmela. She had started with Andy, but Andy turned back early because he was running the LA Marathon the next day.

Carmela and I then continued on the climb for a little bit, we talked and shared some trail stories. This climb is about 600 feet in 1 mile. So, it was relatively easier than the other two, but it was the third climb and comes at about mile 22. However, I was still feeling good and was powering up the climb at a pretty good pace. Pretty soon, I didn't hear Carmela's footsteps. I turned around and she is way back there. Sorry, Carmela!

As I crested the top, it was all downhill from there to the car. The trail was steep but well groomed, so it made for a relatively easy and fast 3 mile downhill run. I few down the tight switchbacks at about 7:30 pace. It felt great to run the ending miles of a long training run in such good shape and with so much energy. It was cold down at the car, especially with my drizzle drenched shirt. So I drove home right away. I'm sure I will see Carmela again out on the trails.

My total mileage for the day was about 26 miles with 8,600 feet of elevation gain/loss and it took 6 hours and 4 minutes. Not too shabby! I think today was sort of a breakthrough for me, as I have never felt this good after a six hour run in the mountains.

14 comments:

Anonymous said...

coach outlet store, louis vuitton outlet online, louboutin, nike air max, prada handbags, ray ban, ralph lauren, nike air max, burberry, kate spade outlet, oakley sunglasses, true religion outlet, louboutin, true religion, tiffany and co, nike free, oakley sunglasses, burberry outlet online, tory burch outlet, toms shoes, louis vuitton, nike shoes, coach outlet, michael kors outlet, louis vuitton handbags, oakley sunglasses, nike free, longchamp outlet, oakley sunglasses, michael kors outlet, polo ralph lauren outlet, chanel handbags, ray ban sunglasses, coach purses, oakley sunglasses, burberry outlet online, gucci outlet, coach factory, polo ralph lauren, longchamp, louboutin, air max, air jordan, true religion jeans, ray ban sunglasses, michael kors, air max, prada outlet, coach factory outlet, jordan shoes

Anonymous said...

ferragamo shoes, louis vuitton, timberland, hogan, vans, oakley pas cher, beats by dre, lululemon, ray ban pas cher, reebok outlet, insanity, mont blanc, birkin bag, hollister, hermes, juicy couture outlet, soccer shoes, chi flat iron, louis vuitton, ugg boots, karen millen, yoga pants, new balance shoes, ugg boots, mcm handbags, bottega, converse shoes, celine handbags, nike air max, abercrombie and fitch, supra shoes, ralph lauren, nike free, rolex watches, air max, ugg, wedding dresses, lancel, valentino, asics gel, marc jacobs, ghd, soccer jerseys, montre pas cher, mulberry, herve leger, north face outlet, p90x3, nfl jerseys, jimmy choo

Jordans Nike said...

there is one impressed me the most: cheap christian louboutin a not christian louboutin tall male guests took the stage, the host Meng Fei require the presence of eller 24 female guests to vote. One of ugg the female guests can not ugg soldes wait to first off the lights. Asked uggs on sale why, the female guests no secret:. "Stature too short," while another did not put out the ugg boots lights female ugg pas cher guest says, christian louboutin remise 50% want to see the back of Discount Louis Vuitton the data say. After reading the first paragraph christian louboutin shoes of the video, the female guests male guests quickly progress, filial piety touched discount christian louboutin more impressed by his talent, which has been insisting Christian Louboutin Bois Dore to the ugg australia last lights, hand success. Bags Louis Vuitton And who did not wait out the Christian Louboutin Daffodile lights of uggs outlet the female guests Discount LV Handbags will look to show Cheap LV Handbags remorse. Cheap Louis Vuitton Handbags

Qing Cai said...

discount oakley sunglasses
coach outlet store
kate spade outlet
hollister clothing
foamposite shoes
coach outlet
chanel handbags
louis vuitton handbags
swarovski jewelry
michael kors canada
kobe 9
burberry outlet online
cheap ray ban sunglasses
tods outlet
ray ban sunglasses online
ed hardy clothing
air jordan 13
oakley vault
coach purses
air jordan shoes
abercrombie
michael kors outlet
burberry outlet
louis vuitton outlet
cheap beats by dre
lacoste outlet
ray ban sunglasses
ralph lauren outlet
true religion outlet
burberry outlet
cai2015409

Jianxiang Huang said...

0707
jx1007
coach outlet
toms outlet
toms shoes
toms shoes outlet online
christian louboutin outlet
christian louboutin sale
christian louboutin shoes
tory burch outlet
tory burch shoes
tory burch outlet online
supra shoes
supra footwear
supra sneakers

mao qiuyun said...

cleveland cavaliers jersey
nike roshe
links of london uk
oakley sunglasses
karen millen uk
louboutin shoes
oakley sunglasses
lululemon outlet
indianapolis colts jerseys
oakley sunglasses
seattle seahawks jerseys
abercrombie and fitch
adidas wings
adidas shoes
coach outlet online
minnesota vikings jerseys
michael kors canada, http://www.michaelkorsoutletcanada.in.net
abercrombie
louis vuitton outlet
lacoste shirts
nike air max uk
pandora jewelry
tory burch outlet
chelsea jersey
hollister shirts
cheap oakley sunglasses, http://www.oakleysunglasses-outlet.us.com
basketball shoes,basketball sneakers,lebron james shoes,sports shoes,kobe bryant shoes,kobe sneakers,nike basketball shoes,running shoes,mens sport shoes,nike shoes
ugg boots, http://www.uggbootsclearance.in.net
north face outlet
coach outlet store
nfl jerseys
louis vuitton outlet
ed hardy t-shirts
ugg uk
nike running shoes
kate spade handbags
michael kors outlet
0828maoqiuyun

Uwfs Nzad said...

toms outlet
Oakley Outlet Stores
Oakeyley Sunglasses Wholesale
Cheap Oakley Sunglasses
Michael Kors Outlet Online
Cheap Oakley Sunglasses
michael Kors Sale
fitflops sale
michael kors outlet
Oakley Sunglasses
cheap toms
Michael Kors Bags
oakley Stores
true religion outlet
Oakley Sunglasses
Michael Kors Handbags
Michael Kors Outlet Store
toms outlet
Cheap Jordans For Sale
michael kors handbags&purses
Cheap Jordans
Cheap NFL Jerseys
Oakley Store
toms outlet store
true religion sale
Wholesale Cheap Jerseys China
Jordans For Cheap
Oakley Sunglasses
Michael Kors Outlet
Cheap NFL Jerseys China

艾丰 said...

jianbin1209
michael kors outlet store
ralph lauren
michael kors handbags,michael kors outlet,michael kors outlet online,michael kors,kors outlet,michael kors outlet online sale,michael kors handbags clearance,michael kors purses,michaelkors.com,michael kors bags,michael kors shoes,michaelkors,cheap michael kors
replica handbags
giuseppe zanotti sale
nfl jerseys wholesale
michael kors outlet online,michael kors,kors outlet,michael kors outlet,michael kors handbags,michael kors outlet online sale,michael kors handbags clearance,michael kors purses,michaelkors.com,michael kors bags,michael kors shoes,michaelkors,cheap michael kors
cheap jordans
michael kors handbags
coach outlet store
nobis outlet
gucci
air jordan 4 free shipping
miami heat
los angeles lakers
minnesota vikings
karen millen dresses
monster beats
mizuno shoes
michael kors outlet store
hermes outlet online
atlanta falcons
prada outlet store
tory burch shoes
louis vuitton outlet
nike free
ugg outlet store
lacoste polo
louis vuitton outlet
christian louboutin shoes
coach outlet online
moncler jackets
longchamp bags

柯云 said...

2016-06-25keyun
air jordan shoes
coach outlet online
copy watches
coach outlet clearance
coach factory outlet
michael kors outlet clearance
adidas wings
christian louboutin shoes
fitflop clearance
kobe 8
oakley sunglasses
louis vuitton outlet stores
toms wedges
discount jordans
true religion outlet
red bottom shoes
jordan concords
pandora charms
toms outlet
ralph lauren outlet
louis vuitton handbags
louis vuitton
polo ralph lauren outlet
rolex watches
marc jacobs outlet
michael kors outlet
coach outlet store online clearances
michael kors handbags
ghd flat iron
louis vuitton handbags
longchamp handbags
coach outlet online
giuseppe zanotti sneakers
hollister shirts
adidas outlet store
michael kors outlet
lebron james shoes 13
jordan retro 8
coach factory outlet

Hua Cai said...

ralph lauren
kobe shoes
montblanc pens
burberry outlet online
burberry outlet sale
gucci sunglasses uk
true religion jeans
nike air force 1
true religion jeans
rolex watches for sale
michael kors handbags
cazal sunglasses
michael kors handbags
swarovski outlet
michael kors outlet
swarovski outlet
ray ban sunglasses
polo outlet
tiffany and co
cartier outlet
tiffany jewelry
futbol baratas
toms outlet
tiffany and co
michael kors clearance
nike uk store
ferragamo shoes sale
ralph lauren femme
oakley sunglasses wholesale
bottega veneta outlet
michael kors outlet
true religion jeans
coach factory outlet
michael kors outlet clearance
adidas shoes
20160630caihuali

xjd7410@gmail.com said...

ralph lauren polo
adidas originals
canada goose outlet
jordan 4 toro
juicy couture
coach factory outlet
louis vuitton bags
louis vuitton outlet
michael kors outlet
jordan 6
burberry bags
uggs outlet
ugg boots
oakley outlet
jordans for sale
coach outlet store online clearances
uggs outlet
cheap oakley sunglasses
michael kors
fitflops uk
jordan retro 3
cincinnati bengals jerseys
ray ban sunglasses
coach outlet
louis vuitton handbags
jordan shoes
pandora jewelry
canada goose jackets
louis vuitton outlet
chenyingying2016817

chenmeinv0 said...

pandora jewelry outlet
ugg boots
nba jerseys
burberry sale
celtics jerseys
coach factory outlet online
michael kors outlet online
oakley vault
tommy hilfiger clothing
tod's shoes
chenyingying20161017

Unknown said...

ghd hair straighteners
oklahoma city thunder jerseys
ray ban sunglasses
the north face
christian louboutin shoes
armani exchange
michael kors outlet
ecco
ray bans
chaussure louboutin pas cher

dong dong23 said...

coach outlet
uggs outlet
oakley sunglasses wholesale
beats by dr dre
true religion uk
cheap jordans
polo ralph lauren
louis vuitton outlet
louis vuitton paris
canada goose uk
20171.19wengdongdong