Saturday - Roxborough State Park
Distance: 15.4 miles
Weather: Gray and cold
As Jaime Y., Woody A., Scott J. and I gathered in the parking lot at the Sharptail Ridge trailhead, I glanced over at the snow-covered trail heading up past a picnic pavilion into the rolling grasslands and beyond and noticed that there was not a single set of tracks on it.
Yep, we'd be be breaking trail on the four-mile stretch of double track through this chunk of Douglas County Open Space land adjacent to Roxborough State Park. Little did we realize at the time, but we'd be breaking trail for all but maybe 10 minutes of the next three hours of winter trail running.
For the first four miles of mostly uphill slogging, we took turns running in each other's footsteps, seeking the path of least resistance through the five or so inches of crusty snow until we entered Roxborough.
|Trail sign at the junction of old County Road 5 and the Sharptail and Swallowtail Trails.|
Once in Roxborough, the snow got deeper and the trail got steeper in spots as we climbed and descended on an old roadbed, veering into the Pike National Forest for a bit before reentering the park and joining up with the Powerline Trail. Through here we hit our deepest snow, in some places about 10 inches deep.
|How long do I have to stand around before my feet get cold?|
|Jaime heads back into the park on the aptly-named Powerline Trail.|
|Jaime scouts the skies for elusive snowy wood ducks.|
|Try to look natural, Scott.|
|Soaking up the views down in Roxborough State Park and the plains beyond.|
|Scott J. runs through the Gambel oak descending from Carpenter Peak|
|The boys regroup back on old County Road 5|
|The Jaimes cruise back up to the Sharptail Ridge Trail junction|
|Jaime Y. makes the return trip look easy.|
|Scott J. speeding toward the trailhead and, perhaps, the day's first bit of sun.|
Time: Watch battery died
Distance: 11.3 miles
Weather: Snowing and cold (5 degrees)
Late afternoon/early evening run from home to a friends house in Soda Creek where we'd left a car the night before. Took the scenic route through the Hiwan, The Ridge and Soda Creek subdivisions. Ran the last couple of miles in the dark, including a good bit on a totally unplowed road with six inches of new snow on it. Ran in the one set of tire tracks available.