We had a great run today up on the Rim finishing out 30 great miles along the Cabin Loop trails. Starting at Washington Park race headquarters we headed up the power line section of the Arizona Trail to the top of the Rim, then the 4.5 mile forest road along the edge of the Mogollon Rim. The clouds were low and the rain coming down so the view was blocked in the clouds. For now.
After the Rim Road we headed up Houston Brothers Trail a couple miles to Barbershop Trail. Barbershop is not part of the race course but an incredible add on through open meadows of ferns and daisy's and some great short but steep climbs in and out of canyons. We connected on the U-Bar Trail which is at mile 65 of the race and went all the way up to Pinchot Cabin. We were fortunate enough to have the Danek Family there hosting a great aid station at mile 20. Jay & Traci and their daughter Petra had everything we needed and were a welcome sight out in the middle of nowhere on the northern most part of the course. I know everyone really appreciated them being there as much as I did.
Leaving Pinchot Cabin we finished the loop with a great clip down the Fred Haught Trail back to the top of the Rim. Everyone dropped back down the Rim as I headed back to Houston Brothers to get my car after getting a head start on everyone to mark the course. Naturally as soon as they left the clouds became apocalyptic and opened up making the road a flash flood of boulders and rivers. I was soaked straight through within seconds and the temperature plummeted. No choice but to soldier on as I was freezing. It made for a quite miserable final 2 miles but it was only 2 miles. The second I reached my car the sky opened and the rain stopped. Saved a shower though when I got home!
We'll be marking the course the weekend of the 21st and will going up as well on the 7th or 14th (not sure yet) to clear the grass out from the Hell's Gate section, clean up the Myrtle Trail and cut the logs along Houston Brothers blocking the trail.