Sunday, 12 May 2013

Four Races Over Four Weekends - Cinderella Trail 50k

I intended to race the past three weekends (Diablo Challenge 50k, Big Sur Marathon and Miwok 100k) since I find that really helps to boost endurance for the summer. However, the reduced distance at Miwok of 60k due to fire danger, plus the off piste section that took me out of fully competing for the win meant I was looking for an extra long run to fit in this weekend. Step up the Cinderella Trail 50k by Coastal Trail Runs, conveniently close to home in the East Bay.

Usually I'd consider four consecutive weekends to be too much but this was planned as a long training run and I knew it included the French Trail which is one of my favorite trails in the Bay Area. It rolls through the forest on single track with the downhills providing momentum for the short, sharp climbs. Many mornings it's shrouded in mist to add to the mystical feeling and when you're on your own it's one of the calmest and most relaxing places I can think of.

Although I didn't bring my camera this time and it was a hot day with no mist, I did take photos last time I raced in Joaquin Miller Park so here are a few shots:

It was also great to unexpectedly see many friends I had no idea would be there, including Arizonans Jamil Coury (last saw him at Fuego y Agua) and Brett Sarnquist (last seen at Across The Years 24hr) who won the half marathon and marathon, respectively. Full results are here and I was very happy to get the win in a very small field as well as the bonus of the course record.

Below is one extra photo show for some trails I was very happy to discover just a couple of miles from home around Pleasant Hill. The Bay Area switches between city and trailrunner's paradise in such short distances with only the low hum of traffic to remind you of the mass of humans nearby.

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