26 November 2010

training-Mt Teneriffe

6 Time
of Day
9:00 AM
Distance 12 miles Power  
Time Total – 5 hours
Speed Overall
  Max Speed
Breakfast 6:15 AM – cereal
Workout Food Promax bar at the start, PowerBar at the top, water
Workout Type  
Weather upper 30s to low 30s, snow on the ground, some rain for the first hour, lots of wind at the top but calm in the trees
Course Mt Teneriffe
Equipment Brooks trail running shoes, CamelBak
Clothing cycling socks, wool socks, Under Armor tights, shorts, Craft long sleeve undershirt, Patagonia Capeline top, OR rain coat, OR Gripper gloves, OR rain overmits, SmartWool hat

I have done two (three?) hikes with TNAB before and so I was psyched for a good workout on this the annual Turkey Burner which would be heading up Mt Teneriffe.

I like their style – get up quick, don't wait for anyone (unless it's a safety concern of course), regroup at the top, take a summit photo and then head down together and get some beer and food. And they don't race up, they just hike at a purposeful pace and don't stop much. The point is to hike AND get in a quality workout.

My excitement for the hike was tempered by my shady equipment meaning I did not have the ideal footwear. In fact I might go so far as to say that with my circulation issues my footwear was kinda silly. I was counting on the activity keeping my feet warm and that it would be nice and cold up there so I would not get soaked.

As we pulled into the trailhead it was raining. I guess it was not going to be cold enough. Rats. I've never been a fan of starting a hike in my raincoat but had to today. I also had to start with my overmits to keep my gloves dry and my hands warm.

The first mile or so is walking up a dirt road. It was covered in three to five inches of slush but not a big deal. It got a LOT steeper as soon as we hit the trail. I guess a new trail has been installed in an attempt to level out the grade somewhat but it adds at least one mile to the trip each way and so since these guys are about speed, we took the old trail. The old trail pretty much goes up. And up. And up. Then along a ridge spine (which goes up steeply) and then you scramble through an alpine meadow to the top.

About half way up we came to a waterfall that was mostly frozen. It was beautiful! Sadly, because of the rain I had left my camera in the car thinking it would just get soaked and/or my hands would freeze trying to take pictures. Damn.

The spine was less than 10 feet wide at times and really fun.

Towards the top the snow got deep. As we started to climb out of the trees the wind had piled up drifts and not having any snow shoes meant I was pretty much floundering in snow that was up to the middle of my thigh. Luckily this section was not so long and within about 15 minutes of hitting the deep stuff we were standing on the top.

It was really blowing up here! We had stopped just as we exited the trees to put on one more layer and I'm glad we did. No one wanted to linger here so we took about two pictures and headed right back down.

At first going down was a blast. Up here it was really cold and the snow was fantastic meaning nice and dry. I was not getting wet at all and could plunge step/jump down the mountain as I would sink in three feet each time I landed – sliding down the slope was not a concern. But as we got back into the woods it was a different story and I suddenly realized why people take trekking poles along on hikes.

I was sliding all over the place and ended up bouncing down the mountain like a pachinko ball using trees to slow my descent. Luckily it worked surprisingly well. I never bit it and arrived at the bottom in one piece.

By this time we had actually take off our raincoats and I had removed my hat and gloves so I guess descending was taking more energy than I thought it would. I sure wish I Had taken my camera... the waterfall and the snow at the summit was spectacular.

On the bright side my right knee was totally fine to day! With all the descending that is a big deal for sure.

Here are all the pictures.

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