Aug 12, 2009

Steven's Bucket List: Run the Wonderland Trail

This is part of a series of posts where I discuss items on my "bucket list." the introduction to the series is here.

93 miles, 22,000 feet of gain. circumnavigates mount rainier in washington.

I suppose it's only fair that I start with the item that inspired this series of posts. It's also only fair to give proper credit to krissy meohl and ellen parker, who ran it last week in 2½ days. Upon reading about it on Krissy's and Matt Hart's blogs, the idea of running this emerged from the recesses of my memory.

I first heard about the wonderland trail back in 2003 or 2004, reading backpacker magazine's list of best hiking trails in the USA. I was immediately interested, but this was before I was into ultrarunning. I weighed at least 350lbs at the time. I found myself discouraged by the 10-14 days it typically takes (fit) people to complete the thing, because that is a lot of time away from home & family for a hike.

It has stayed in my mind, however, even as I started getting into trail running and developing the ability to travel long distances. The idea of mixing trail running and the wonderland trail for a 2-3 day completion had occurred to me, but I never heard of any ultrarunners actually doing it until reading on matt's blog about krissy's and ellen's completion.

I don't know why more ultrarunners don't do it. But if you'd like to know why I'm so interested in it, all you have to do is a google image search for wonderland trail. Here's a sample: