Our mission for the day was to course mark 16 miles of the Jemez Mountain Trail Runs 50k and 50m course. Tom, Mike and I depart Pajarito Ski Area at 8:00am
Runners look for these!
The always scenic Canada Bonita trail. This section of trail is an out and back for the 50k runners. The 50milers only see this once, around mile 38
Near the Pipeline Aid station looking down “Nate's Nemesis” into the Valles Caldera. The 50 mile race drops down this steep and loose “trail” (really the old pipeline) down into the Caldera. Take it slow and stay right!
Tom's thinking, “we gotta go down that again?”
Steep and loose “Nate's Nemesis”
The upper part is scariest because it's loose rock and dirt on top of slabs underneath.
An abandoned structure down in the caldera
Wide open running in the Valles Caldera
Rabbit Mountain in the background. Some snow is still around but melting fast
Cruising by a stock pond
The future site of the Valles Caldera aid station
Single track heading to cross country action to the saddle just left of center in the photo
Cruising by another pond. The course runs along this small dam
The Bones Marker
Me and Mike head up a hill but the way Tom held the camera is looks flat
Redondo Peak and Redondito Peak
A little bushwacking up towards Cerro Grande Peak
The course cuts across this scree slope. There's a “french-sounding” name for these slopes, according to Mike, but I forgot the name.
Moss, snow, talus and the Caldera
A few sections of snow left but surely they will be gone by race day
Cerro Grande summit
We met a very friendly Bandelier ranger on the summit of Cerro Grande who showed us the boundary between the caldera and Bandelier. We were right on it.
Coming down the north side of Cerro Grande
Coming down into Cañon de Valle with Pajarito Mountain in the background
Awesome running down Cañon de Valle
Runners watch out for this barbed-wire fence. You have to step over it via the fancy steps we beefed up here
The one downed log in Cañon de Valle. No worries.
Back at the car at Pajarito Canyon after 16 miles of trail marking on some of the most scenic miles around town