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Obviously Single
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Has anybody riddent the Laramie Enduro and lived to tell about it?

If so, how was the course? How was the weather?

A friend of mine rode it, then took off to Idaho for vacation. I'm dieing to know
how he did, but the WEB site doesn't have results yet (though it does have
a few pics).
 

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Winning time was 4:48, if I recall. 17th place was about 5:30. 170ish finishers. I lived to tell about it, but I didn't see the last 20 miles (first of 3 that I've had to drop out of). Weather was about perfect. First half of the course was more 2 track and roads, last half more singletrack.

I'll try to post more specifics if my day slows down some.
 

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The first part of the course was mostly gravel and two track, and very fast. At about the half way mark (I think it was a little before), there was some good single track and some steeper hills. There was one descent in which the trail was just visable, and was very rough. Then more road to single track to a killer climb. I think just about onyone finishing will agree that the last climb, especially the last single track part of the climb, was painfull.

Good fast course. I measured 5000 feet of climbing, but it felt like more. The weather was great with only a brief period right before noon which felt hot. Then the clouds rolled in and everything cooled off. There were more aid stations than they had stated in the description of the race.

The winning time was 4:48 and change. There were alot of people entered in the pro/expert catagory, so there were alot of fast times. About 50 people finished in less than 6 hours.

The organizers did a good job with the race. They had some problems with people taking down the course markers on Friday evening/Saturday morning so there were a couple of issues with course markings, but for the most part the course was well marked.

If I am in Colorado, I will do it again next year.
 

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Elijah said:
Good fast course. I measured 5000 feet of climbing, but it felt like more.
My altimeter read 6602. It's actually been pretty accurate so far.

The race was fast and hard. Good singletrack, too. There was one pretty long 2wd gravel road (into a headwind) on the backside of the course that wasn't too fantastic. It ensured that you were thoroughly worked before you got to the last singletrack climb, Headquarters Trail.

The weather was beautiful. I couldn't have asked for better conditions.

It was a great race, pretty epic. Not to mention the free beer, BBQ, and taco bar at the party and awards ceremony.
 

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Some photos are now on their website. Near perfect weather day, a little windy out on the plains, but it helped keep me cool. Fairly fast start, MOVE SHEEP ! watch out for sand, and cow pies. Too much double track for my tastes, really wears you out mentally. Super dry up there, sucks the moisture right out of you. I had some cramping problems, but was able to recover and finish strong, catching riders in the final 10 miles that I had not seen in hours. Couldn't quite catch the woman on the blue "Over the Edge" singlespeed though, good for her. Nearly cleaned the final singletrck climb, just a minor dab or two. Was hoping to do better, but came in at 6 hrs 30 min. Looking forward to getting faster next year.

Pictures http://laramieenduro.org/race/index.asp
 

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Great Race...

I thought it was a very nice course. The start was slower than expected (which was good for me) and the pace fast the entire race once the grassy singletrack climb started. I liked how the course was split up between singletrack/doubletrack/dirt roads as well. There was maybe a mile or two of a bushwacked tall grass descent which was pretty sketchy but mixed it up just enough to keep the race interesting.

That climb at the end was just wrong. I was pretty much done at that point and lost at least 5 minutes on that thing. Still squeaked in under six hours though....
 

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2melow said:
That climb at the end was just wrong. I was pretty much done at that point and lost at least 5 minutes on that thing. Still squeaked in under six hours though....
I fear the Headquarters climb.

I was in the Aspen Loop area, where i knew I was looking at a do or die situation: Either head downhill, ride another 20 miles, and then climb Headquarters, or coast 1 mile downhill to the finish and turn in my dnf. I don't know if it was knowing what was in store, knowing how close I was to sitting in the shade for the rest of the afternoon, or if it was my lungs feeling like I could move about 3 ounces of air, but one way or another, I made a decision and called it quits. It's still bothering me now that I didn't finish. Next year, I guess.

I've climbed Headquarters when I'm fresh into a nice ride up there, mostly in my middle, no real stress. I've also hated it in the 2 Enduros I've rode it in. It's given me an interesting perspective..
 

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great race, long report

I got to bed at a hotel on 3rd st in Laramie at 10:30 and lay there for 2 or 3 hours waiting for sleep to come. The Travel Inn was located at a traffic light and every few light cycles the Wyoming version of a fart pipe (hole in muffler) served to keep sleep at bay. When all of the roaring pickup trucks went home I got to sleep. A few short hours later the alarm went off. I headed off to sherry's 24hr restaurant for the triple egg veggie omelet. The waiter was johnnie on the spot and filled my coffee cup 3 times. I got him to fill my venti sized insulated stainless cup that had 2 tea bags in it as well. I went back to the hotel and all that caffeine had the desired effect seriously challenging the 2nd story hotel toilet. This prolonged thinking session put me behind schedule and I got on the road at 6:35 w/ 15minutes to get to the race start.

I was glad to discover that the race was customarily behind schedule (thanks to people like me). We got off at ~7:30am. The first half was really pretty easy. I started at the back of the pack and gradually reeled people in. At the first aid station I downed 3 ibuprofen to get my back to shut up. It worked. But that three egg omelet was sittin mid gut and not goin nowhere. I felt my gut gradually bloat in small increments until it was visibly distended. No worries. As long as there were no explosions I was satisfied to carry on. Every once and a while a skanky sherry's 3egg veggie omelet burp found it's way out. I usually like broccoli but this was one time when I felt pretty GHWB about broccoli.

I passed a woman on little blue singlespeed bike before the first aid station and figured that was the last I'd see of her like lots of the other people I had passed so far. But she skipped this first aid station and cruised right by me. I pulled her in again some time after that station on a long climb (I think) thinking again that that was the last I'd see of her. At some point thereafter another aid station appeared. I thought this has to be the first official aid station so I asked. Some lady said, "no this is the second one." I thought, great, I love low expectations, you're never disappointed. Just to confirm we were indeed at the second aid station I asked for the mileage. She and a few others said it was between 35 and 37 miles. Great. Making good progress. Race half done. Feeling good. On we rode.

We rode by a cattle fence that kinda freaked me out cause I've got 28" Hbars. I leaned to the left to make sure I didn't snag the fence. Finally the fence ended and we crossed a road and continued on a trail that gradually climbed through the grass. Weather Report - Black Market came on the Mp3 player. I passed a guy w/ Dr. Evil and Mini-Me fastened to his camel back. This was fun to look at. After x hours of camping out at the anaerobic threshold stuff like this is highly entertaining. I've got to get me a homer simpson or felix the cat or somepin for my camelback. Maybe barbie? Whatever.

Anyway, at some point after much pedaling the trail went into the woods and I began to realize how nice a front shock would be. At the same time I realized that my left leg was starting to do its own thing. At the top of the pedal stroke the pulling muscles began to cramp hard. I started to ride standing up, trying to stretch these muscles. I slowed down and got the leg to behave but just barely. Every time I had to make any kind of effort it started cramping again. This wasn't good. But I told myself that we must be at 50 miles or so and that I could find a way to tough it out. I should also mention that I was riding a singlespeed.

During this struggle that woman on the little blue singlespeed passed me. I cursed as I realized I was really slowing down. Oh well, my only goal had been to finish when we started, and that I was riding well was gravy up till then. We came up on another aid station to the right of the trail. I thought, "hmmm, this doesn't seem right. How could this be the 3rd station?" I asked a course worker what the mileage was and he said 38 miles. My heart sunk. So I asked another course worker. "38 miles and change." Ok, now I knew that this was the official second aid station and that the last one had been the first official aid station and that the first one we came to had been an unofficial aid station. Right about now my right leg started acting up too. Same thing w/ the pulling muscles plus some cramping of the hams as well. Ditto the left leg. So now I pretty much had full on cramping of both legs front and back sides, hams, quads, and sometimes calves. I really eased back on the throttle and tried different pedaling styles, standing, sitting, round, square, ass in front of seat, ass in back of seat, and so on. I got off the bike for some climbs to try and walk off the cramps but getting on the bike would bring them right back. I'd get back on the bike and have to ride through 15 or 20 seconds of cramping. It hurt like a SOB but I really didn't want to quit. I carried on just keeping the cramps at bay enough to persist. Weather Report finished up and Clifford Brown - At Basin Street came on.

We did a super nasty descent through a grass rabbit trail that was bumpy as 'ell and had me repeating the incantation "fock… me…". All you could see was grass but it jarred the snot out of me. Finally the bunny trail ended and we spilled out onto a downhill dirt road. I was able to get some momentum up w/ my 190lbs of body mass and 29" wheels and up ahead a little blue singlespeed bike came into view. Eventually I went past her. Hmmmm, how about that, I though. Whatever. Another aid station appeared (unofficial I'm pretty sure) and I downed a bunch of green stuff. It tasted bad, not sweet at all, but I knew I was majorly dehydrated so I quaffed as much as possible. I also let the aid folks fill my bottles up. The little blue bike went past w/o stopping. Whatever. "Uncle" I thought. I headed out, full gut suitably sloshing about. We crested a hill and headed down a fast descent where much to my surprise I felt my legs getting wet. Then I noticed orange droplets in the air. Something clicked in my head. I stopped and put the top back on the hemorrhaging water bottle. The kid at the aid station didn't fasten it. Still ¾ full so no worries. The trail then had us scrambling over some goat trail above a creek. This of course got the cramps going again as soon as I got back on the bike. But now I had the routine down. Keep the pedals moving and they will eventually subside. It hurt but I knew that they would probably stop and they did. Right around here a friend of mine passed me for the second time in the race. He had gone off course twice and each time fallen behind me. Funny thing was that I was waiting for a racer to come up behind me and help to decide straight or left and low and behold it was Dave again. I laughed. He didn't seem too concerned about the lack of course markings and we decided to go straight. Here I was following someone who had already gone off course twice but I decided all I wanted to do was make it to the finish line and a little detour wasn't going to prevent that. An orange flag eventually appeared and we knew that we were on the course for sure. The road went up and down and Dave disappeared ahead of me. I entered a long period of solitude where the road/jeep trail undulated gradually. My legs quit cramping and Tanja by Randy Weston came on the Mp3 player. Very nice.

The official third aid station (I think) appeared and I drunk a cup of orange stuff, and another, and another, and another, and another, and another, and one more just in case… I ate a banana and filled the two bottles. Back on course. Up ahead in the distance was a big guy w/ a UWyoming jersey on. Ha! Bait! Slowly he came back to me. We went up a long hill and foot by foot I gained on him. Finally I passed him and said, "almost there." There was no response from him just a blank and ashen look of despair. I felt bad competing w/ a corpse. Later at the finish line I heard that this guy was seen next to the trail flat on his back arms and legs spread out and eyes closed. So I passed a guy who was in worse shape than me. Tra-la-la.

The race left the road it had been on for a while and went through a parking lot w/ a bunch of guys hanging around on motorcycles and trucks. I said, "beer me" even though I knew it was a stoopid thing to say. They laughed. Beginning of headquarters climb. WHAT THE FOCK IS THIS?!?! The "fock me" incantation ran through my head like a mantra. I got off and walked feeling no shame whatsoever but still looking behind me to see if anyone was gaining. Nobody back there. Over the top of headquarters and I actually reeled in some guy who was walking slower than me and almost caught up to Dave but the rocky trail meant that he got away from me after we crested the top. The walker I passed caught up to me once we were riding and said that there were only two miles to go. I didn't know if he wanted me to move over to let him by but John Coltrane was now wailing in my ears and I had tunnel vision for the finish. I kept the pedals turning w/ periodic cramps but nothing that was going to derail me. Just w/in a mile of the finish the trail turned right and I did a kind of stinky thing by passing some guy. I had been passing people all day long on the uphills and I just let it happen again even though I felt guilty for passing somebody after not letting the other guy by me. Oh well. I rationalized that they probably didn't care. Whatever. I'm sure I would have been pissed.

Anyway, rounded the corner and through the chute and done! Thank God. Made it. 6:04. Good for second place in men's singlespeed (even though this was really third place singlespeed - courtesy of the little blue bike).Seemed pretty easy in retrospect. Now if I can drop the 20lbs of extra weight and learn to hydrate properly (I'll get more salt down), who knows? It's never too late to try, I guess.

My legs still hurt from the cramping but I'm looking to do other long races now. They are much more fun than the short ones. There is so much more time to strategize and daydream. The competition isn't as fierce and you really get your monies worth. And doing the ride w/ great tunes playing sets a mood that short races don't give you time for. Thanks for reading!
 

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KM right ?

We rode together a little, ( me: Red FSR., ex Surly 1X1'er ) and I too went back and forth with the blue singlespeed Gal (between Aid #1 and #3) . She passed me and 4 others on a gnarly climb, that put us wussie gearheads to shame. I didn't see her again till the finish line. I took her at Firecracker 50 though, so now we're even. 6 hrs ? Great job ! , I had some cramp problems @ mile fifty, but bounced back by sixty to at least finish strong, catching riders I had not seen in hours on the Headquarters trail. ( Only time I used my granny, but was glad to have it, no walking ) I think my time was about 6 hrs 30 min. Waiting for official times. Had a great time, hoping to improve next year. Maybe I'll be able to keep up with you more then. GR
 

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pseudo intellectual said:
Finally I passed him and said, "almost there." There was no response from him, just a blank and ashen look of despair. I felt bad competing with a corpse.
Great imagery and a real nice writeup. Thanks! I enjoyed the read.

bock
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Nice Report

Hi PI:

Nice report -- just the right length and amount of grit. :)

I heard from my friend Phil yesterday. (He headed to Idaho after the race, and I've
been wondering how he did.)

Just for background, I have beat Phil in a race ... once, and that was at our second Laramie race together. (He beat me at the first one.) But he consistantly has beaten
me at every race since then, from short to long. (I think I can at least take
credit for motivating him. :))

I can't get Phil to race the Leadville 100 bike race with me (he think's it's insane),
but he's been doing longer and longer races (like Laramie and the Silver Rush), so
it's only a matter of time until I get him into the LT100.

He said that he didn't do very well in the race. Maybe he was tired/overtrained?
He finished in about 9.5 hours. He said that he wasn't last, but he was close
to it (not counting those that missed cutoff times, of course.) For reference, he
recently finished the SilverRush 50 miler in about 7.5 hours. He said Laramie
was harder (which surprised me!).

Thanks to all that have replied. Great stories!

I didn't hear about any sheep, though. :) Two years ago (I think), when I raced
Laramie last (when I beat Phil), about mile 60 we passed a pen full of sheep, in
the middle of nowhere! I was in a zone, so to speak, and I was startled to hear
a bunch of school kids laughing. I looked up to find this pen of sheep. It was
pretty funny (being that I was completely out of it).

Great job guys (and gals!).
 

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Sheep sheep SHEEP!

Yeah, the sheep were early. Firstish climb. When I went past 95% percent of them were on the left, being herded by some dogs, and one fine looking gentlman. About 15 seconds later, There were some sheep on the right, and one of them was wearing a hat.

Yes, wearing a hat.

It was too early in the race (10-15 minutes) for hallucinations, I did a double take and yeah, I'm pretty sure it was a hat.

After the race, and some food and beverage, I was hanging out with some of our "crew" and the converation of farm animals came up. One guy was stopped twice by wayward cows. Another guy mentioned the sheep. I offered that I thought I saw one with a hat. Someone else popped up, "Yeah! One of the herder dogs was carrying a stuffed monkey that was wearing a hat!"

Really. A sheep wearing a hat. I swear.
 

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yup

GRFSR said:
We rode together a little, ( me: Red FSR., ex Surly 1X1'er ) and I too went back and forth with the blue singlespeed Gal (between Aid #1 and #3) . She passed me and 4 others on a gnarly climb, that put us wussie gearheads to shame. I didn't see her again till the finish line. I took her at Firecracker 50 though, so now we're even. 6 hrs ? Great job ! , I had some cramp problems @ mile fifty, but bounced back by sixty to at least finish strong, catching riders I had not seen in hours on the Headquarters trail. ( Only time I used my granny, but was glad to have it, no walking ) I think my time was about 6 hrs 30 min. Waiting for official times. Had a great time, hoping to improve next year. Maybe I'll be able to keep up with you more then. GR
Yeah, that was me (KM). I remember you saying you wished you still had the 1x1. Well, at least they are cheap! The little blue singlespeeders strength was her consistency. She was like the eveready bunny. I too did much passing on the climbs even though I am not at a good race weight. I think just riding the KM a few times a week has made me a much stronger climber. As you probably know, the singlespeed is a strange combination of advantage and disadvantage. If more peeps rode them they would lose much of their mystery, i'm sure. You should ride one in next year's event. It was a pretty good course for a single gear. Anyway, I'm jazzed to train more and drop the spare tire and learn how to keep my salts in balance. If I can do all that the race will be the easy part. See you next year - PI BTW, know of any other long races coming up this season?
 
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