Tomorrow, I will embark on an adventure run from Boulder to Golden, the 7th annual Hallowed Hundred, organized by the Boulder Trail Runners.
I ran the 6th annual in 2019. It was possibly the best adventure run I’ve ever experienced. Now, a year out from that run, I’m feeling nostalgic of the memories I made that day. Hallowed is a unique mountain ultra experience. It’s not a race; it’s more of a group run. The course isn’t marked, but there is a course; its just in Fred’s head. Golden is a mere 30 miles from Boulder down the relatively flat CO 93, but we take a more circuitous route into the mountains to Ward and Nederland. It ends up being more than 15,000 feet of vert in 95ish miles.
I remember getting to South Sourdough trailhead thinking a single thought: don’t drop here, just leave this aid station by foot. It was late at night. I was getting the darkness blues. Was I really up to run almost a hundred miles that day? I had to decide my intention. I waited over an hour in that car waiting for some slower runners to get in and recover. Somehow, I walked out of that aid station onto Rainbow Lakes Road and continued.
I’ll always remember the feeling of running down from Caribou Pass into Nederland at 4am while the mountain town slept. I was feeling incredible as I ran ahead of all my peers through the streets usually busy with cars backing up.
Breakfast at the Red Barn in Golden Gate Canyon was incredible! The aid stations for Hallowed are amazing, and everything is volunteered from our group of friends.
But leaving breakfast and realizing I still had 20+ miles to go was hard. I remember how Laura walked with me in the back as I struggled to climb the paved road. She encouraged me the whole way to White Ranch. This was a transformational moment for me. This moment, more than any other, stands out in my mind as a time when I realized the importance of mental state in ultra running.
And of course, I remember the 3 (THREE!) rattlesnakes we saw on North Table Mountain. We were not happy about it! None of us were in the “jumping out of the way” mood.
Finally, we dropped off North Table and ran the bike path to downtown Golden, finishing in one of the parks there. After the finishers picture, I laid down in the grass and thanked God it was over.
Since I ran it last year, I have not successfully completed a similar distance run, somewhat hurting my confidence. All I want from tomorrow (and the next day) is an adventure. My intention is to finish.