Renaming St*pleton

The Rename St*pleton for All campaign has won.

Benjamin F. Stapleton was a Ku Klux Klan member and a 5-term mayor of Denver. This bit of Colorado history has been whitewashed for seventy years. I didn't know the story until I read this great blog series by Meg Dunn about the Colorado K.K.K..

Remember: de-honoring white supremacists isn't erasure of history as long as we continue to teach future generations that the K.K.K. once held considerable political power in the State of Colorado. And that it could happen again.

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Parade in Denver, May 21, 1926 Denver Public Library Digital Collections, X-21543).

Never Summer training week eighteen recap

This was my biggest week of training ever. I aimed to surpass my efforts in week nineteen of my 2019 season and I did it.

  • 17 hours, 34 minutes

  • 77.3 miles

  • 15,279 feet D+

I ran on six days, including three long runs and one hill workout. My hamstring continues to feel fine at a slow pace. Saturday's long run was in hot weather, and I managed the heat well. Sunday's was at high elevation, up to 12,324 feet, and I handled that well, too.

The wildflower season at Horsetooth and Lory is evolving. The State Flower is in bloom, as is our showiest penstemon and the bright yellow and red blanketflower.

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Colorado columbine (Aquilegia caerulea) in Lory State Park

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Penstemon strictus (Rocky Mountain Penstemon) in Horsetooth Open Space

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Blanketflower (Gaillardia aristata) in Horsetooth Open Space

It's great to live close to Rocky Mountain National Park and have relatively easy access to high elevation trails. My family I drove to the shuttle lot on Bear Lake Road, masked up for the short bus ride to Glacier Gorge trailhead, and were on the trail soon after. I'm going to do this again soon, to run and to pick up the permit for our family backpacking trip at the end of the month.

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Snowfield on Flattop Mountain

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View north from Flattop, snowy Never Summer peaks in the distance

Big news this week is that the Never Summer 100k race is officially on. There will be rule changes and constraints to keep runners and volunteers safe: wave starts, no parties, reduced service at aid stations, masks required when not running or eating or drinking. If I'm healthy on July 25, I'll be on the starting line. For a few weeks I've been making plans for an alternative adventure in case Never Summer didn't happen, but I didn't think it would be feasible to run the entire course by myself due to the high elevation and remoteness. I'm pleased to be able to do it with support. Thank you, organizers, volunteers, and our State Forest hosts.

Never Summer training week seventeen recap

Shit is fucked up and bullshit, but I'm still running. Running restores me. Here are the numbers for week seventeen.

  • 16 hours, 5 minutes

  • 70.5 miles

  • 13,143 feet D+

That's my biggest week of climbing and running/hiking time since I started keeping track in 2015 and number three for mileage. Early in the week I was worried about my hamstring. I definitely tweaked it a little at the track on Tuesday. It was a mistake to try a speed workout this week and I'm going to do something else instead next week. Wednesday my injury didn't hold me back too much on the climb at Maxwell and I was able to go up and down Timber and Howard on Thursday. My hamstring is okay at 10 minutes per mile or slower, so I decided to keep my long running plans for the weekend: back-to-back runs of about 20 miles and 5000 feet of climbing.

Saturday I did Quad Rock climbs four (Timber), five (Mill Canyon), and six (Spring Creek) in light rain under cloudy skies. I got home before a rare derecho hit Fort Collins and the rest of the Front Range.

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It doesn't get more green than this here

Today, Sunday, I drove to the Roosevelt National Forest's Dunraven Trailhead and in perfectly tranquil mountain weather ran up to Signal Mountain, Donner Pass, and back. My runs at Lory and Horsetooth top out at 7000 feet. This run started at 7800 feet and I ran 8 miles above 10,000 feet. The Never Summer 100k course that I'm training to complete has eleven of its first twenty miles above 10,000 feet and twenty-five miles above that elevation overall.

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The Mummy Range up close

This was my first time on these trails. The 4.5 mile, 3000 foot climb on Bulwark Ridge Trail through dog-hair stands of lodgepole pine is less than special, but the Signal Mountain peaks offer neat views and the tundra is in great shape. I don't think many people come up here.

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Phlox sibirica

The trail between Signal Mountain and Donner Pass (not that Donner Pass) is a little sketchy in places. Mature limber pine are everywhere. I had an odd accident ducking under a fallen one: the bill of my cap, pulled down low against the sun, hid a branch on the far side of the trunk and I knocked myself on my ass coming out from underneath.

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Somebody got their motorcycle under this and I'm not sure how

The trail down from Donner Pass is much more runnable and attractive than the Bulwark Ridge Trail and there are many wildflowers along Miller Fork Creek, a tributary of the Big Thompson River.

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Meadow on Donner Pass trail

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Castilleja miniata, Giant Red Paintbrush

I'm going to try to get up into the high country again next weekend. Snow is leaving the mountains so quickly now, a higher peak or two might be possible.