Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Prepping For A Long Walk In The Mountains

Looking for a different type of challenge and the chance to run something new, I'll be embarking on the 54 mile Manitou's Revenge Ultramarathon this weekend. I can hardly wait to hit the rocky, rugged Catskill mountain trails in the predawn light this Saturday. 

It will be interesting to see how my body holds up after running another 50 miler only two weeks after a hard effort at Cayuga Trails. Unlike Cayuga, the Manitou's Revenge course is barely runnable at all. Even on a good day with a proper taper, I'd likely be walking a good portion of this beast. To add to the adventure, I'll be camping out near the finish line in Phoenicia, also a first, then taking a bus (provided by the race) at 3:30 AM to the starting line in Windham.

Per the race website, Manitou's Revenge ascends about 15,000 over the point-to-point 54 miles through the Catakills High Peaks region. I've hiked extensively in the Catskills over the past few years, including a good portion of the race route, and I know first hand how "rocky and precipitous" those trails are - super technical, typical east coast stuff. Needless to say,
the upcoming "run" will actually be a long hike. Aid stations are sparse, and the time between them will probably be several hours. The fact that Manitou's is worth four UTMB qualifying points says something about the difficulty level. Not to mention, the men's winning time is typically around 11 hours. The RD provides a generous 24 hours to cover the 54 miles, with hard cutoffs along the way at specified aid stations.

Additionally, the course hits five of the Catskills high peaks, plus many more high points with scenic overlooks. The route is more remote than any race I've run previously, and this will be my first time carrying a trail map, cue sheet, and Life Straw for the duration. 

A week and a half post Cayuga, my body is feeling pretty good, without any soreness or fatigue during the few easy runs I've been doing. Hopefully I'll still be standing after 10-15 hours in the mountains, and with any luck I'll be done before dark. The long training run I did through the Slide Mountain Wilderness was also helpful in preparing for this weekend. With a group from Ithaca registered for the race, I think it will be an exciting weekend, whatever happens!

No comments:

Post a Comment