Monday, September 9, 2013

Mt Robson Marathon and Playtime in Valemount

El Brita view from Zeberman Col

Stomach butterflies, excitement and healthy anxious stress...oh yeah, that's what race day is all about... with time... only a few months I almost forgot what it feels like to stand at the start time of an event!

After a long season of ski mountaineering racing overseas this past winter, May was nothing but recovery. Deciding to have a different focus this summer and not jump into an other season of mountain bike racing sure was a difficult decision but it brought me to focus on a slightly different discipline and objective. Why not run a marathon? From having done the half version of the Mt Robson Marathon last year and having ran the incomparable Berg Lake trail a few times, I knew this would be a fabulous idea.

Like any other objectives, the road that leads to the main goal is what makes the experience so enjoyable but standing at the start line of the Marathon with familiar faces, frantic energy and laughs, I knew all the training and prep reminded me how much I missed those feelings. 3,2,1 go and off we were all 70 plus runners heading for an amazing adventure up to Berg Lake.
Each one of us had a slightly different story over those 46 kms but all can probably say that the landscape was what kept them going when the muscles were starting to scream for a bit of a break.

Still had enough energy to make a funny and none flattering picture!

From the Visitor centre, 2 kms of road had the pack already nicely spread. Then about 8 km of double track brought us to the bridge just before Kiney Lake. From there, it was the start of the single track undulating along the beautiful lake shores. After the half marathon turn around point, a long traverse on the flat brought the runners up the first longer climb and short descent to Whitehorn campsite. From there, a little rest and we were up against the 4 km Empress Fall climb to gain the plateau where stunning Berg lake rests. Travelling along the lake before the turnaround point was at times challenging since the view of Mt Robson and it's glacier were taking the focus away from the task ahead. Gaining the Warder cabin and hitting the turn around point personally gave me a second wind and from there, hydration and consistency were key. A smile filled with pain and gratitude crossing the finish line, it was great come to a rest and enjoy the beautiful views, the sunny afternoon and recover for the next adventure.

For full results of the race, check out:
They  have not been published since there has been some slight trouble with timing.
I was really pleased with a 4:16 and 3rd women overall for a first full Marathon.
Congrats to all the people, old and young who came out to race.

About 10km to go Mt Robson Marathon

After a good sleep-in, some great recovery food and social breakfast, it was time to head to the hill again in order to fill our hunger for quiet times in the mountains. Andrew McNab, Reiner Thoni & myself headed south of Valemount to gain a logging road part ways up our objective. A bush walk  and ridge walk later, we started to gain the subalpine and finally the alpine. An easy scramble brought us just below the  headwall of Zeberman... Even from the col, the views of the glacier behind the face and Kinbasket Lake laying in the valley below were breath taking. From the Col, we scrambled to the 2630m summit and recharged our soul of mountain energy.  Walking all the way back down, I was soaking in the moment while the boys were busy catching up. Just feeling grateful to be in the mountains, smiling with the movie of the past days playing in my mind and dreaming already of the future adventures to come!

Forward and upward Zeberman Adventure
Andrew Holding the Sky
Kinbasket Lake from Col
Zeberman Col
And the summit...
The unique Reiner

Alpine Beauty

Red Mullet Andrew
Having a moment in the Alpine

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