Updated 1/5/18

2017

Please click on thumbnails for larger view!

Grand Canyon Rim to Rim to Rim run Sept 29,30 , 2017
Finally getting back to going both ways this year, the weather couldn't have been more perfect! Low 40s in the morning and highs around mid to upper 70s. The colors on the north side were good, but changing from greens to yellows still in many areas. The maples this year were outrageous.
Photo Pictorial

South Rim 

On the way up to the canyon, fall colors on the mountains in the Flagstaff area.


On the south rim looking across the canyon


Close up of above showing trail leading the the rest area at Cedar Ridge along Kaibab Trail


South to North
On the way down in total darkness, the first possible light to take a photo is when you approach the river crossing bridge.  Still the first set of images are blurred.


Crossing the bridge!


Finally, Phantom ranch in about 2 hours.


Topping off the water in Phantom


Heading north on the trail.  Good flat running for a while.  Next destination - Cottonwood camp.




Ribbon Falls along the way


Finally after 4 hours - Cottonwood camp!






Now past the camp, heading towards the last ranger station and the super steep uphill climb out.  This is the waterfall.




Ranger station/rest area.  the last stop before the huge climb out.






Going through the Bright Angel Shale.


Towards the top, thousands of feet up and miles away.


Now in the Supai formation.

And that was the last shot I took before reaching the top.


Finally, here I come onto the North Rim!

North Rim
Fall colors in the golden aspens!






Looking out from the North Rim


Red maples growing on the slopes



North to South
First light on the way down to Cottonwood camp.


The trail on the way up from Cottonwood.  Great Running!


Crossing the beaver dam. 






And the sign all runners want to see - Phantom directly ahead! 





And here returning to the South Rim!
Gaspin in the Aspens August 26 , 2017
The Racing Shirts for the Event
Perfect weather for being in the middle of the monsoon, we lucked out this year and had cool temps and clear blue skies. The races were full, 250 runners total allowed for this one. Not well orchestrated at the start line, and there was no Med Tent at the finish line either. We did fine, but I saw lots of bangs, bruises and falls. That is the nature of a challenging trail race!
Photo Pictorial

Hunreds of runners arriving before the race


Getting setup for the late packet pickup


Awards for the Elites


The start line before the race


Lining up for the 5k (Dawn)


Here I come in from the 15k!


After I crossed the finish line


Finish Line shot!


Finish Line Shot!
40th Annual Dave McKay Half and 5k Events August 12 , 2017
The Racing Shirts for the Event Medal for the Half (First medal ever for this event!)
Forty years this race has been run, we have run the last 11 years. The weather was great considering it is the middle of the Monsoon, and the massive rain did not start till around 2pm well after it was over. We both did well, I shaved 10 minutes off of last years time. And now for this 40th event, they handed us finishers medals as we crossed the finish line for the very first time ever. An outstanding year, our running hats off again to Neil for doing a fantastic job again on this event!
Photo Pictorial

Late registration before the races


The start line is going up!


Neil (left) looks very authoritative here...


Out on the trail of the Half, Dawn took a few images to show the trails


San Francisco Peaks


Long stretches of back roads


Passing the Naval Observatory on Lowell Mesa


Neil at the finish line taking photos


And Neils shot of me coming in!


Neils shot of Dawn coming in!
Arrivipa Extreme Trail Racing Events The Big Pine Trail Run June 10 , 2017
 
The Racing Shirt for the Event The Finishers Mug

Flagstaff Extreme Big Pine Trail Runs

Saturday, June 10, 2017

The third annual Xtreme Trail event up at Fort Tuthill County Park in Flagstaff was a truly amazing event.  We had not dont this set of running events before, and could not ask for more perfect weather this year to try it.  Hundreds of dedicated trail runners came together for this grueling run, the 13k loop is run twice for the 27k and four times for the 54k.  Thats just over 8 miles of challenging trail filled with huge rocks, gravel, stumps, pot holes and open fields.  For the most part, the run is smooth sailing.  But you must be wary here - rocks jutting out in the middle of the trail in smooth sections are always out to get you! 

For this event this year, I did the 2 loops while Dawn race walked the 13k loop.  Such grueling trail is not for the meek - The mind set of runners at these events is more finish the challenge of the trail in one piece, and not so much do it fast as possible.  That can invite disaster if one is not careful, and there were more than a few banged up knees and elbows at the finish line on this one.  Fortunately, both of us came through in good shape, and absolutely loved the terrain and scenery, and the great group of runners on this one.  Crossing the finish line on these types of runs are not filled with such fanfare as you might expect from a road race.  Here, family and friends welcome you and they handed you a nice big ceramic coffee mug with a custom event emblem on it. Looking forward to next year already!

Photo Pictorial

Registration tent and Packet pickup


The Starting line before the race


Finish line (other side of start)


Logo


Lining up for the start of the 27k - Im in the center in yellow


Just before race start! - I am on the right side


Start of the 27k - Two laps


Am I looking at the girl, or the camera?


Ok, it was the camera... ;)


Starting line for the 13k for Dawn


Scenes from the trail - smooth going here.  But wait....


Trail


Aid station about half way. Notice that it is NOT right on the trail, because trail running is more about conquering the terrain, not how fast you can grab a cup and run faster!



Finishing area, Dawn waits for me to come in an hour later.


The last few hundred feet here I come!


And on to the finish.  No big fanfare at the finish line in trail races, its all about the distance and terrain.


Finishers mugs waiting to be handed out when you cross the line. 


Major awards for the fastest runners


Finish line shot
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Dawn at finish


Food at the finish!
Whiskey Row Marathon Events May 6 , 2017
The Finishers Shirt for the Event The Medals

This year was the 39th annual marathon, and the weather was warm at race start at 57 degrees, but fortunately did not heat up beyond 70 when I finished! For the past few months, I did not know If I would be able to do this race with the hamstrings I pulled in February in Sedona.  The good news is that the Running Doctor said as long as I did not push for a PR, I would do fine.  So I took it very slow - and no fast running down hills!  I came over the line in great shape, and no issues at all with the hammies.  Ill be slowly working on my speed now, for the big Xtreme 27k trail race in June.

Dawn did the 10k, and came across in near record time.  The crowd for the 10k and half were huge this year, had to be a record.  I think the number of marathoners was well represented as well, there was a lot of us at the 5am early start. 

As is typical for each race weekend, we spent the day Friday driving around the area taking photos of the wildlife and scenery.  This is a huge part of the experience of this race weekend. 

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Packet pickup in the YMCA gymnasium


Race Morning.  The starting line at the first light of day


Getting ready to race!  The Sun will be coming up very soon, so we have to get to the pine trees fast!


Race start for the first batch of Marathoners


Starting line festivities of the Old West before the 10k


Race for younger children and their families


Lining up for the 10k event!


Here I am coming in from the long Marathon




Food area at the end of the race


Ive done it - and managed to not pull any more hamstrings!


Finish Line shot


Dawn at finish line
Brian Mikelsen Memorial Run Events April 8th, 2017
The Finishers Shirt for the Event The Medals
After recovering from my pulled hamstring last month, it was great to get back to running in races again, and this event has a perfect mix of both road and trail running.  I did the half this year again, and Dawn race walked the 10k.  We both did well, and while I only placed 5th in my age group because I am still taking it cautiously on the down hills, Dawn placed 4th in her age division - the best she has ever done on this race!  Weather was a bit cold at race start, but warmed up to a perfect racing temperature at the end. 
Photo Pictorial3








Phoenix Marathon Events Feb 25, 2017
The Finishers Shirt for the Event The Medal for the Half
This year, while I was side lined due to a pulled hamstring, Dawn race walked the Half Marathon in nearly perfect weather. She did well coming in at 3:21:10 and this is one of her fastest half marathons ever! We are both looking forward to next years race.
Photo Pictorial3

Dawn coming in to the finish line after her fast half!




     
Sedona Marathon Events Feb 17, 2017
The Finishers Shirt for the Event The Medal for all Events

This year we did a lot of things for the first time ever, and all of us had a great time in fantastic weather.  I signed up for the full marathon this year for the first time, and had no major difficulties in this grueling back roads distance event.  Dawn race walked the 10k with our friend from Australia - Nakita, and her sister Sheri and nieces Alyssa and Genna.  The amazing scenery and well run races makes this a perfect family experience! 

We met Sheri, Alyssa and Genna race morning at our motel in Sedona.  The race was a later time than we are used to, 9am for the full and 9:10 for the half, 9:20 for the 10k.  But with clear skies, and a stunning sunrise the crowds were in great spirits.  A record this year, 3100 runners for all events - more than ever before.  300 did the marathon along with me.  At 9am, the horn sounded off and I was on my way in the marathon.  20 minutes later, Dawn and gang started the 10k. 

The marathon is very hilly on the paved portion, and is also the return route for coming back to the finish line.  If this wasn't challenging enough, once we hit the dirt roads full of golf ball sized gravel, potholes and washboard the hills really got long and steep.  At the turn around there was a lot of uphill.  Id have to rate this run one of the most difficult races, but not quite as challenging as Whiskey Row. 

When I came running over the finish line, Dawn and Nakita were cheering me on to the finish.  Sheri and gang had finished and gone to meet Dawn and Sheri's parents that were staying in Sedona that day as well.  After we got back to the motel and cleaned up, they all came by to visit us in the motel room.  I stayed that night and left for Payson the next morning after breakfast.  Dawn and Nakita went to the cabin in Happy Jack to go skiing the next day. 

To conclude, we like the half, 10k and full on this one, and are planning on returning once again next year to certainly do this event again!

Photo Pictorial3

Sedona Sunrise, day of the Race


Sheri dressed to scare the competition!



Genna, Dawn, Nakita, Alyssa, Sheri


Starting line for the 10k


Nakita and the T rex!


During the 10k


Sheri starts to fall back


Post race!


The "Bolt" pose!


Here I am coming in to the finish on the Marathon...


Last few feet - Feel my pain!


Finish line photo


Here are some of the commercial images taken during the races:

Me near the finish line.  


Dawn, Sheri, Genna


Dawn


Crossing the finish line!



Nakita is having fun!


The last few feet before finish!



 

PF Chang Rock and Roll Half Marathon Jan 15 - 2017 - Tempe, Az
The Finishers Shirt for the Event The Medal for the Events

Over 10,000 runners this year did the half marathon - Which is one of the most popular distances for this race. While I nestled in with the masses for this half, Dawn race walked the 10k and finished only a few minutes after I did making it the perfect race situation at the finish line. Once again, we were lucky - as the rain predicted that day never materialized. We had great temps in the 50s, and no sun to bake us at the finish miles. We both exceeded our raceing goals for this race on this day, and had a great time.

While I have done the full several times on this one, I prefer the half because the route is more scenic and I dont like the long distance after the Mill Avenue bridge to the finish line when doing the full. Racing should be about getting fit, getting outdoors, and having a fun time after all!

Photo Pictorial
At the starting line just before race start for the Half Marathon.  


Looking behind me, ready to race - thousands of runners!


Dawn race walks the 10k (commercial images)
  

 Racing in toward the finish line on the Half!
    

Finish line shots!

  
The Boulder Trail Run Payson, Az Oct 14 , 2017
Shirt and medal
A chilly morning to do this first ever "annual" new trail race on the north end of Payson. 47 runners showed up, and we were bussed from the meeting parking lot to the race starting line. We both did great and in great time - they had mis-measured the course and it was more like a 8k instead of a 10k. Still, we had a super challenging race course filled with highly technical dry creek crossings, boulder climbing and some very steep hills. Looking forward to next year!
Photo Pictorial

Busses line up to transport runners to start line.  One bus would have been enough...


Packet and shirt pickup

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The starting line at the trail head.  No timing this year.


Runners starting to gather at the race start


Minutes from race start!


Quiet scene along the trail (Dawn)  It did not stay smooth like this for very long!


Finish line shot


Finish line shot

 

 

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