I didn't start running today until just after 3pm (Mountain time). The Support Team managed to get new tyres for the RV but the main delay was caused by Wee Kirsty's late train. It was delayed for 7 hours! I took the decision to get dropped off at the start point while the Support Team made sure Kirsty got on her train safely. We didn't know at that point how long the train delay actually was.
At the start point, I was all set for a long unsupported run. I left with both my hydration backpack and waist pack. I had winter gear in case it turned cold and night gear in case I ended up running in the dark. I wasn't too happy about being miles away from the RV but I've ran hundreds of unsupported miles in training. This wasn't too different.
When I set off I noticed how fresh my legs felt. A combination of my daily Cherry Active recovery drink, Kirtsy's massage and 26 hours of recovery left me feeling like it was day one all over again. In fact, I felt far better and fresher than I ever did on day one.
I was only 2 miles into the run when I noticed a car pulled up ahead. Then I noticed the driver with a black and white shirt on. It was Dave and Lesley Greaves who had been driving all day to try and find me. They were on holiday and wanted to hand over 200 US Dollars (£123) sponsorship money from the NUFC Midlands Supporters Club. What a gesture! What generosity! What great timing when I felt quite lonely on the road. The money has now been paid to The Children's Foundation via justgiving.com. Thank you to Lesley and Dave for taking the time out of their holiday and also to the NUFC Midlands Supporters Club for their generosity.
As I continued on my way I got quite emotional about the previous 15 minutes. It is moments like this that I'll take away from this run and look back on in years to come.
I was getting through the miles pretty quickly and it would have been even faster was it not for the weight I was carrying on my back. Every now and again I kept looking behind to see how far I'd travelled from Rabbit Ears Pass. I could easily make it out during the first 10 miles of the run. You can just about see the pass in the photo below.
While I was running I was calculating how many miles were left until Winter Park, Colorado. This is the point I need to be at by Sunday evening. This is the start of the climb up to Berthoud Pass and the highest elevation on this run at 11,300 ft.
At 1930, I took the decision to stop running at 15.5 miles. This leaves 56 miles to do before Winter Park on Sunday evening. Monday promises to be an awesome day and I'm looking forward to the challenge that Berthoud Pass brings.
I'll be looking to split the 56 miles into 32 tomorrow and 24 on Sunday. The reduced mileage on Sunday will mean that my legs are fresh for the huge climb on Monday morning. After that, it'll take a couple of days to get to Denver where the wheel alignment on the RV needs to be looked at. By Wednesday I should be on Highway 36. A road that will take me through numerous states and over 1000 miles!