I had the pleasure last weekend of getting away to Portland for a few days. Unfortunately I'm still not even close to running an ultra again, but that didn't take away from all the fun to be had.
James Varner of Rainshadow Running was hosting the inaugural Gorge Waterfalls 50k, and along with the Orcas Island 50k he has now sold out each of his first two events for the season. There's a reason for this of course, as James is known for putting together incredible, and incredibly challenging courses. At the pre-race briefing he very boldly stated:
"I think this can and will become one of the best 50k races in the country"
Shortly thereafter the runners were off on a waterfall tour unlike any other. The course has something crazy like 30 waterfalls in thirty miles kind of numbers? As the runners started to trickle in 4h25m later the overwhelming sentiment was that this race had just become an instant classic. Many expressed that the race was harder than they expected, but not a single person could go more than a minute without talking about the pure beauty of the course itself.
On a personal level I experienced a significant setback following my exciting 10k treadmill run the week prior, and when coupled with a decent flu bug, I had not produced a singular drop of sweat in over nine days. I seemed to have bruised some deep tissue around my ankle from that run, and in the end I was more than pleased to simply be able to hobble/hike five miles of the course and capture some pics and vid. It really is incredibly beautiful and I can't wait to get a chance to run it myself in 2012.