Stage 1 – Transrockies run Buena Vista to Railroad Bridge – 21.0 Miles/2,500 feet of elevation gain
Although starting at a relatively lower elevation and lacking the monster climbs of other stages, stage 1 has proven to be one of the toughest stages over the years since it is often quite hot and dry. The running surface varies from gravel and rock to sand on a mix of trails, four-wheel drive roads and Forest Service Roads. From the start, you climb steadily to the high point at Checkpoint 1, and from there it’s mostly downhill to Checkpoint 2. The last 4 miles are a grueling false flat on County Road into the finish at Railroad Bridge.
Meaghan: The day started off in 48º F weather with nothing but sunshine. It was the perfect start to a race. We began in the heart of downtown Buena Vista but it wasn’t long before we were on an incline in the heart of the trails. The first 7 or so miles were mostly packed sand/gravel. The views were pretty incredible; it was impossible not to smile nearly the entire time. The next few miles came with a lot of steep downhill. We flew down those. The last 4 were smooth sailing. Although we were on a flat road in direct sunlight, I was happy to be done with the ups and downs of the trails. Besides a few steep inclines and a lot of sunshine, there isn’t much negative to say about Stage 1. It was a lot of fun, challenging, and felt awesome crossing the finish line. Almost immediately after the finish, we headed over to the river to soak our feet. Best. Thing. Ever. The bitter cold water on tired feet was exactly what I needed. After we left the river, we caravaned over to camp, picked out our tent for the week, showered, and grabbed some cold beers. Not a bad day 1.
Thomas: Deja Vu. I can’t believe how familiar the course was from 2010. The best part of the day was seeing runners from 2010 and making new friends. This is such a great race because you get to spend 6 days with like minded adventurers. The day started off up hill, followed by rolling ups and downs, and ended on a grueling 4 mile slight uphill to the finish. I took full advantage of the icy cold river and submerged myself up to my waist. Burritos for dinner for the win. Tonight will be our first night in the tents, we will let you know how that goes.
Finished in 4 hrs, 6 place open mixed.