30 September 2012

The Megatransect 2012..... a trail marathon like no other....

The Megatransect is a legend……..
This was the 10th year anniversary of the 1st Megatransect and it is an amazing race.  I cannot even begin to try and explain to people that have done this race what it consists of.  Take your best marathon time ever and double it and you’ll be close.  I ran, walked, hobbled and even crawled on this year’s edition.  Ask Soul what he thought!!!

Here’s a quick recap from me.
As normal I pulled into Castanea about 5pm.  BBJ and Soul had been there since noon or so.  I immediately started carbo loading by downing Troegs beers as quick as I could.  We hung out a bit and I got my campsite set up and also bought a new hydration running pack.  I believe this is my 40th hydration pack alone.  I have a fetish for packs.  I sleep with them. 
So we got set up and went to the Church for the annual spaghetti dinner.  Mighty fine stuff and we got to sit and listen to ultra runner James Conway tell war stories.  I think Soul was getting nervous…….

After that we went back to the Mega site and goofed off for a bit more then hit the tent at about 2130.  I was sleeping like a baby and woke up at 1am thinking it was time to race.  Back to the fart sack.  Where’s that old standby pack…

Anyway I got up about 0430 and had a long hot shower.  I then made my way over to Bfast.  I wasn’t that hungry which is not usually a good sign but I had eaten too much spaghetti the nite before.  I had a scoop of eggs and that was about it.  About 0630 I meandered back to the car and started lubing up and getting dressed for the race.  I went with the following:

Vasque Velocity trail shoes
Smart Wool Phd Lite socks
Compression calf covers
SBR running shorts
Long sleeve tech shirt
Go Pro Chest harness
Nathan 1.5litre hydration pack
2 gels/2 cliff shots

The gun went off at 0700.  This year was beautiful weather.  Cool and dry opposed to last year which was a miserable slogfest.  Soon I was headed out on the road to the trail head.  It was the same as last year.  I think about 3 miles or so till you hit dirt.  It’s hard to not push the pace here because you know soon you’ll be walking/crawling but you have to maintain and hold back.  This race is LONG AND HARD…..
I hit the dirt at just under 30 minutes and started the first climb.  It went well and then winded up and down till mile 6 and the Boulder Fields……  This is the most amazing stretch of a race ever.  1.5 miles or so straight frigging up on nothing but massive boulders. 

At the top I was feeling good and sauntered/crawled along Rattlesnake ridge.  I took a pretty hard fall at about mile 8 but was back up quick.  It was dry this year which was better.
At the end of the ridge the trail drop painfully steep on nothing but rocks all the way to the valley.

I made the 10 mile aid station at I think 2hr 40.  Because I didn’t eat that much Bfast I was starving and took on WAY too much food and drink here.  I felt it for another 4 miles. 

From here the aid stations were spaced about every 4-5 miles or so.  I took a little over an hour to pull into the 14 mile aid station at 3hr50.  The trail got super tough from here navigating the Giant Steps and the Reservoir trail.  A lot of hurt here but there was also a nice blonde in front of me……

By now I couldn’t tell if I felt good or sucked.  That is a good feeling so I just kept pushing.  At the 17 mile aid station I was in at 4hr 40 and I felt pretty good listening to stoner shoe gaze music on the Ipod. 
I barely stopped at 17.  Long enough for a drink and a fig newton then I kept on going.  I pulled ahead of a lot of people by just cruising thru the aid stations.

Now here was the deal.  I knew If I could get into aid station 22 miles at 6 hours or so then I might have a chance at breaking 7 hours.  I kept cruising.  IT band started hurting a bit now but some crystal meth helped that.

So I cruised into 22 miles at 5hr 58…  I just kept on going because I knew the trail from here was tough going over the Raw Trail Boulder Field.  I had an hour to go 4.2…..  I climbed the Raw as quick as I could then punished myself on the descent.  My knees were shot now and I took a pretty big faceplant fall that wrecked my ankle.  I kept going and hit the road at the bottom and started making my way to the Green Mile.
I was really hurting now but refused to give up and/or let anyone catch me.  I would walk 50 steps then sprint 50 steps. 

Ultimately I cruised in at 7hrs 9 minutes something…..  A pretty damn good Mega.
More video and pics to come….

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