Ultra #10 – Crush that Dome!! At Reveille Peak Ranch (overall #31) – 8/27-28/16

Reveille Peak Ranch 60k
Burnet, TX (Reveille Peak Ranch)
8/27-28/16
Overall #31 / Ultra #10

This is the last of the Capt’n Karls nighttime trail series from 8/27-28/16.
So I have some great news to share… I was invited to interview at Texas Tech HSC El Paso for a pathologist position at a new hospital they’re opening on the Thursday-Friday before. That Friday, I was offered the job on the spot!! Thank you God! On that Saturday, I flew back from El Paso back to San Antonio, got back around 11:30 AM, came home for a bit, grabbed lunch, and took a nap. Whew! What a day…

I had emailed the race director, Brad, about attempting for the 60k belt buckle challenge.. The challenge is only for those who complete all 4 60ks in the series in one summer… At the time, it was hard for me to believe that 1) I have a job and 2) that I managed to survive 3 60k’s in one season…

I made to Reveille Peak Ranch around 6:15 pm, just in time for packet pickup and for most of the trail briefing. This race felt different. .

First of all, we were underneath a pavillion and shaded. The weather was cool, but it was muggy feelin’…

Of course, it ain’t the same without some usual company!!

From the Start/Finish to Gate (aid station) ain’t that bad…

From Gate to Dome was a 4.7 mile segment where we go on top of the dome… When people say crush the dome, it’s like hiking up a less steep and less tall version of Enchanted Rock. But it’s full granite and you must watch your footing, especially at night… Here’s some pictures at Sunset. The scenery is beautiful and yes, we have to keep moving, but the view on top of the dome of the sunset is just spectacular, and it makes me want to take a moment and a breather, thanking God for all that He has done for me and showing me a glimpse of His creation and design. I’ll let the pics below speak for itself 🙂

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And then it got dark after the second aid station. And it got hot. But I’m not surprised and have been through this before. Then it was about 4.0 before we got to the Creek aid station. Then, it was about 2 miles to the start/finish before going back for the second loop.

Reveille Peak is an unique course in that the 10k/60k share a common segment, yet the 30k is completely different and still does 3 loops. It’s like, everyone’s running their own race loop 3 times… Pretty cool if you ask me!

The last loop…. Eh it got challenging!! I knew I had plenty of time to spare, but I was about to fall asleep as I struggled to climb up that dome again for the 3rd time!! I looked up the sky, and saw the stars were lit brightly at night. It was such a beautiful experience to reflect and think about. There wasn’t much city lights at all to mask the wonders of the Universe that God has set forth before my eyes in wonder. Amazing sunset, followed by a starry night… I definitely have no regrets and would’ve seriously regretted if I had quit after Muleshoe Bend…

Random pics at night… They weren’t spectacular or anything but again, I found that having the double lighting (one on your head and one on your hand) works well and keeps my feet from stumbling on those stupid rocks… lol

Like he had said, Bill was indeed at the last aid station. I told him that I was going for the Buckle challenge, and there’s 2 miles left to go. I hung around the aid station for a while and said, “man, this race is probably the toughest in my opinion, honestly Colorado bend wasn’t THAT bad…” Lol I probably didn’t know what I was talking about.

But I will never forget how discouraged I was at Muleshoe Bend and how his encouraging words kept me motivated all season. Before I left, I just had to say, “thanks once again for encouraging me at Muleshoe. Again, if it wasn’t for you, I wouldn’t be here today.”

Biblical principle:
“Anxiety weighs down the heart, but a kind word cheers it up.” – Proverbs 12:25

As I approached the finish line, knowing that God had responded to our fasting, which was nothing and incomparable in my opinion compared to what He has done for me, providing me with a job opportunity… And knowing that I have completed 4 60k’s in the middle of the brutal Texas summer heat and humidity. There were only 16 of us total who got the belt buckle challenge. There were many others who DNF’d either on one race, or whatever the situation was.

Here I am… Along with one of my 60k buddies this summer, Christian, at the finish line for Reveille Peak. And on the right is the belt buckle for completing that challenge…

Concluding thoughts: The 60k series was symbolic and parallel to growth, physically, mentally, professionally, and spiritually.

Physically: sick, weak, unconditioned for the heat to becoming resilient in this unforgiving weather.

Mentally: giving up / about to throw in the towel, to keeping focused and perservering.

Professionally: throwing my CVs into a “black hole” and not knowing where the future lies, to obtaining a promising job in El Paso to come

Spiritually: it’s like having a “crushed spirit” and weighed down by the burdens of life, to a spirit that is lifted up, with a better appreciation of trusting God, knowing that if it’s His plan, it will work out in the long run.

This couldn’t have been a better adrenaline and insomniac-filled summer…

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