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  1. #1
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    Colorado Trail Race

    It may not be the Arizona Trail Race, but it's one of the 'Big Three'. (The other being the Tour Divide) The CTR kicks off this Sunday, July 23rd at 4am Colorado time. Follow the dots here: Trackleaders.com/ctr17

    We have some solid AZ representation in the field:
    Myself
    Jason Hanson
    Max Morris
    Dana Ernst
    Kurt Refsnider
    Brad Mattingly

    Pretty sure I'm the weak link in that chain!! Aside from finishing, I'd love to get done in under 8 days. Average time is somewhere around 6 1/2 - 7 days. Record pace is just under 4 days. Think about that.

    The route alternates direction each year. This year it goes from Durango to Denver. Rumor has it, there's anywhere from 50 - 100 miles of HAB!! At least I'm good at that. The route averages around 10,000' for the duration of the 525 miles with some 70,000' of gain. The high point is 13,200' at Coney Summit just east of Silverton on a 30 mile section that doesn't drop below 12,000'.

    For more about the event go here: Colorado Trail Race

    For the ultimate ride stoke, check out Aaron Johnson's video from last year's Denver to Durango version:
    Watch in full screen mode, HD quality with some drone footage too. (During the race the weather was bad from Silverton to the finish, so he went back out a few days later in good weather to capture the drone stuff)

    **It's looking very likely that there will be one fire detour near Breckenridge. The Tenmile Crest section will likely be detoured to the Wheeler trail and drop down into town. It doesn't really cut out any climbing, but does put resupply directly on route, so that's helpful. Otherwise, Breck is 3 1/2 miles off-route**

    Speaking of resupply, it's few and far between for the most part. I'll be starting the ride with 4+ days of food. Pack will be heavy, but getting lighter each day!! I don't expect to be in Silverton during business hours and it's limited at best anyway. So, my first resupply is the Mt. Princeton Hot Springs some 240 miles into it. Breckenridge is the last real resupply about 150 miles from the finish. There's a saloon on route about 100 miles from the end and the owner follows the race. I'll be crushing a monster burger there for sure.

    Anyway, best of luck to all the riders. Stay safe, have fun & finish!!

    Here's one from Blackhawk Pass a couple weekends ago. (I'll be pushing up this!!)
    Colorado Trail Race-img_20170706_160019_976.jpg
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  2. #2
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    I'm exhausted just reading about it.

    Don't forget to remember how lucky you are to be out there - between the thunderstorms and high altitude asphyxiation.

    HTFU!!

  3. #3
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    What an adventure! Good luck to all you AZ riders!

  4. #4
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    Ouch.. my lungs hurt just reading this. Good luck !

  5. #5
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    Have a good time out there! All downhill once you crest Indian Trail Ridge, I hear...

  6. #6
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    Well, it does 'trend' downhill from there (after mile 30). Just a few climbs in between...
    Colorado Trail Race-ctr_profile_cues-copy.jpg
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  7. #7
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    Here's the route overview with the Trackleaders checkpoints:
    Colorado Trail Race-map.jpg
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  8. #8
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    Best of luck. Have a swift and safe race.

  9. #9
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    I hope you have a fantastic adventure JS!

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by phatmike2112 View Post
    I hope you have a fantastic adventure JS!
    Based on the forecast, it won't take long!! Rain gear is packed!!
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  11. #11
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    Rain gear is a must. Seems to rain every day out there this time of year.
    Joe
    '18 Specialized Epic 29", Vassago Verhauen SS 29", '13 Santa Cruz Solo 27.5", XC, AM, blah blah blah.. I just ride.

  12. #12
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    Update...
    Looks like lots of rain hail on course. Some are saying it the worst for years. John is now in Silverton.
    Joe
    '18 Specialized Epic 29", Vassago Verhauen SS 29", '13 Santa Cruz Solo 27.5", XC, AM, blah blah blah.. I just ride.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by JoePAz View Post
    Update...
    Looks like lots of rain hail on course. Some are saying it the worst for years. John is now in Silverton.

    John said he has pretty much been soaked since Durango. Going to spend the night in Silverton.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by dtownmtb View Post
    John said he has pretty much been soaked since Durango. Going to spend the night in Silverton.
    Yeah just tracked his dot to motel in Silverton. Figured he needed to dry out. I bet he would have rather have deal with the snow and dry conditions we had few weeks ago.
    Joe
    '18 Specialized Epic 29", Vassago Verhauen SS 29", '13 Santa Cruz Solo 27.5", XC, AM, blah blah blah.. I just ride.

  15. #15
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    Today at work I watched his dot hangout below Blackhawk Pass. Must've been some weather up there he was waiting out.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by schillingsworth View Post
    It may not be the Arizona Trail Race, but it's one of the 'Big Three'. (The other being the Tour Divide) The CTR kicks off this Sunday, July 23rd at 4am Colorado time. Follow the dots here: Trackleaders.com/ctr17

    We have some solid AZ representation in the field:
    Myself
    Jason Hanson
    Max Morris
    Dana Ernst
    Kurt Refsnider
    Brad Mattingly

    Pretty sure I'm the weak link in that chain!! Aside from finishing, I'd love to get done in under 8 days. Average time is somewhere around 6 1/2 - 7 days. Record pace is just under 4 days. Think about that.

    Schilling update.

    As of 8am (Phx Time) Aug 1, John is descending from the Mt Elbert trailhead is on the way to Leadville. It has been a long slog for him given really wet conditions all last week. Looks like John is now in weather window and is finally start to make some good time.

    He is last on course, but don't let that make you think he is weak.

    Just to show how hard this year has been.

    From the Az Crew
    Jason Hanson - Scratched
    Max Morris - Scratched
    Dana Ernst - Scratched
    Kurt Refsnider - Scratched
    Brad Mattingly- Scratched

    John Schilling - Still riding! John may not be fast, but he has mastered HTFU!

    John is at mile 329 of 538 so just over 200 miles to go, but only 2 more 12,000 ft+ Mtns to climb.
    Joe
    '18 Specialized Epic 29", Vassago Verhauen SS 29", '13 Santa Cruz Solo 27.5", XC, AM, blah blah blah.. I just ride.

  17. #17
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    How is it that the weak link is the only link left? I just can't believe he didn't bail at some point in the last week - especially given the caliber of folks who did.

    Given what he has been through and where he is, there is no way he won't finish. Can't wait to read the ride report...

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by dtownmtb View Post
    How is it that the weak link is the only link left? I just can't believe he didn't bail at some point in the last week - especially given the caliber of folks who did.

    Given what he has been through and where he is, there is no way he won't finish. Can't wait to read the ride report...
    i agree 100% ...

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by dtownmtb View Post
    I just can't believe he didn't bail at some point in the last week - especially given the caliber of folks who did.
    He's racing his own race and making good decisions. Determination, perseverance, and preparation can take you a long way.

    Looking at the setups of some riders and the pace they were trying to push I can't say everyone was making good decisions out there in terms of strategy or preparation. And just because you're fast doesn't mean you're tough...or smart. You really find out who's tough when conditions get ugly, and I for one will be doing this in September when the weather is more settled

  20. #20
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    There is no quit in that boy. Quite amazing if you ask me. Most of us here couldn't even fathom a ride like this and he is going to pull it off.

  21. #21
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    I get tired driving to Denver from here. Amazing stuff!!!

  22. #22
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    Schilling update
    Cross over 12,400 feet of 10 mile pass today and is rolling in torwards Breckenridge. Georga pass is the last "big pass" he needs to cross at only 11,800 feet. After that it "Trends donwhill" to Denver. However weather is back again is currently wet for the next 30 miles included the pass. So John may Chill before taking on final big hurdle.
    Joe
    '18 Specialized Epic 29", Vassago Verhauen SS 29", '13 Santa Cruz Solo 27.5", XC, AM, blah blah blah.. I just ride.

  23. #23
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    This is really exciting!

    Go John!!!

    Could be his best RR ever to look forward to when all is said and done.

  24. #24
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    'Rugged individualism" in action, friggin awesome to watch that blue dot keep'n on well done JS !!

  25. #25
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    Just quick update. John camped last night on the peak just before Georgia pass at route mile 399.1 He detoured to Breckenridge to wait out nasty storm. He said is 11 for 11 on days getting rained on. Though he was ok last night, but still got some rain. Right now weather is clear where he is so he should start making good time. Who knows how long this last stretch will take. Just remember in these final miles there were 4 scratches in leading top 8 riders. So is still never easy. John is strong and I can tell he will finish. The only question is when.
    Joe
    '18 Specialized Epic 29", Vassago Verhauen SS 29", '13 Santa Cruz Solo 27.5", XC, AM, blah blah blah.. I just ride.

  26. #26
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    Amazing tenacity man. Go figure that hydration issues got JS in the AZTR. The CTR is ensuring at least THAT doesn't happen.

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by JoePAz View Post
    The only question is when.
    Checked in to TL to see how he did today. Considering its 130am local time and he's still riding, I'm guessing he's going to push to finish tomorrow (Friday). Hopefully the weather stays clear enough to make that possible.

  28. #28
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    it is 7am phx time an John is on the move. less than 60 miles to go and I expect him to finish today. Report I got from John was it was probably going to be late as there are still some good climbs before he finishes. The profile looks deceiving given all the really big stuff earlier in the ride.
    Joe
    '18 Specialized Epic 29", Vassago Verhauen SS 29", '13 Santa Cruz Solo 27.5", XC, AM, blah blah blah.. I just ride.

  29. #29
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    Congrats John!

    He finished an hour ago! About 7:30 pm AZ time.

    Sorry John but you were not DFL. There is still one guy out there.

  30. #30
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    FINISH > DNF...... very happy for you John...

  31. #31
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    John has redefined HTFU....
    Joe
    '18 Specialized Epic 29", Vassago Verhauen SS 29", '13 Santa Cruz Solo 27.5", XC, AM, blah blah blah.. I just ride.

  32. #32
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    I'd like to buy the man a beer ....

  33. #33
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    Hey all,
    Back in AZ after driving all day home from Littleton y'day. Thanks you all so much for the constant support. I can't tell you how many times I wanted to give in and quit. The conditions were absolutely horrendous the first 7 days for the most part. The one saving grace, the mud there isn't sticky, just, well...muddy. I may have a few pics to share along with some stories or two, but I'm going to be a little b1tch and make you wait. 12 nights out on the trail, only one time in a bed & one shower. That makes for a cranky, ripe rider by the end!! At least I wasn't sweating a ton like in AZ. Yep, rained on every stinking day. The final day was the nicest, only a brief sprinkle that didn't require the rain jacket. And I'll go ahead and call total BS on that final 'trending downhill' profile. That has a ton of climbing & HAB hidden in there. I'm guessing I tallied somewhere around 80-100 miles of HAB. No joke. Left foot is a bit numb as are all my fingertips from constantly undoing the buckles on my pack & gear. Rain clothes on, rain clothes off, rain clothes on....you get the idea.

    This ride was incredibly tough beyond expectations. Amazingly brutal. So, what's tougher? AZTR750 or CTR?? For me, CTR. No contest. Elevation took a heavy toll physically and the weather almost broke me mentally. That's a wicked combo. I really don't know how I kept it all together, but damn did it feel good rolling into an empty Waterton Canyon Friday evening.
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  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by schillingsworth View Post
    I may have a few pics to share along with some stories or two, but I'm going to be a little b1tch and make you wait. 12 nights out on the trail, only one time in a bed & one shower. That makes for a cranky, ripe rider by the end!!
    So, basically, you turned feral and K has to teach you how to use a computer again.

    Pics or it didn't happen!

  35. #35
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    I think John slept in the backyard last night under sprinklers. He felt to "confined" inside.


    BTW... Great effort John!
    Joe
    '18 Specialized Epic 29", Vassago Verhauen SS 29", '13 Santa Cruz Solo 27.5", XC, AM, blah blah blah.. I just ride.

  36. #36
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    meh...a little bit of rain never hurt anyone

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