Friday, October 19, 2012


Between work and family obligations and the grind of trying to squeeze runs in between it all, I have been starting to feel the pinch...that feeling that you're not doing anything well and constantly rushing to be only moderately late to something.

As a result, my head has usually been somewhere else, and my body has just been along for the ride.

Add to all that the fact that winter is coming and the wind soon will be bitingly cold and our trails will be snow-covered.

Early this week I decided it was time to do something to recharge the mojo a bit.  So, I took yesterday afternoon off of work and headed to the hills.

Looking down Eldorado Canyon toward Denver.
I started my recharge run at the Fowler Trailhead south of Eldorado Springs and climbed into Eldorado Canyon State Park. The wind was really whipping as I ran through the old narrow gauge railroad cuts. By the time I got to the trail above the visitors center that leads to Walker Ranch, the winds had died down and I settled into a meditative, relaxed pace.

From there, I climbed over to the Walker Ranch connector trail and descended down to South Boulder Creek and started the 7.5-mile Walker loop running clockwise.  About this time, I started looking at my watch, wondering if I was bitting off too much since I had to pick up jP at school at 3:30 p.m.

Views of the Indian Peaks from the Walker loop trail.
I quickly decided I would have just enough time and disappeared back into my head.

This was my first trip back to the Walker loop in years. I used to mountain bike this loop regularly when I lived in Boulder. I really enjoyed the modest grades and mostly non-technical trails. I just ran easy and focused on enjoying the sounds of pounding feet, the feeling of a cool breeze on warm skin and the Zen of moving unhurriedly up and down hills under one's own power. Recharging.

The mouth of Eldorado Canyon as the afternoon shadows march down the canyon walls.
As expected, I got back to my car exactly on time. I was depleted, though.  With my focus on recharging, I neglected to refuel. I was out for about 18(ish) miles, 4,200 feet of elevation gain and 3:20 and only brought two gels...not enough for me on this day.

Still, driving down Highway 93 on my way to pick up jP, my mind was in a better place, more relaxed and positive...maybe even rejuvenated.


  1. Love that area... those cuts are pretty cool, it is a classic lollipop. Glad to hear you are getting your groove back.

  2. Hours on a trail have a way of doing that... Thanks, GZ.