Welcome! The intent of Anecdotes from the Trail is to share my experiences while trail running or racing (occasionally on the road too.) And to feature other trail runners and their accomplishments. You may see the occasional gear review or even contest. Please visit from time to time. Happy trails!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

2012 Harbison 50K: Race Preview

2011 Start of Harbison 50K (photo by Ray Krolewicz;
taken from Harbison 50K Facebook page.)
We're only five days into the new year and here comes the first race, ready or not. I'm heading to Columbia, SC tomorrow for the Harbison 50K which is on Saturday. I'm looking forward to it. Mainly because it's a new race for me and I always enjoy my first go around with a particular course.
The Harbison 50K takes place in, well, the Harbison Forest State Park, more or less right in Columbia. It's a two loop course. To quote Dan Hartley, the race director...

There are 18 miles of technical single track trails, with the remainder on fire roads, wide trails and stream crossings with plenty of rocks, roots and mud on the beautiful trails of the Harbison State Forest. Although a surprisingly challenging course, with plenty of aid-stations and great volunteers along with lots of hot food at the finish, this is a great 50K for your first ultra! Total elevation change is 4,186 ft.

Compared to recent races, the Pine Mountain 40 and the Stump Jump 50K, it should be an easier one, but you really never know, do you?

Earlier this week, the Southeast was hit with a frigid cold front that I, for one, was hoping would continue through the week. I just do better in the cold. Always have. But checking the forecast for Saturday in Columbia, it's going to be in the mid-40's at the start, but probably in the 60's or maybe the low-70's by the time I finish up. Sounds great, but I wouldn't mind a few degrees cooler for the high.

Anyhow, I feel fit for this race and I had a good long run a couple of weeks ago. One big difference going into this race compared to Pine Mountain last month is I didn't have some freak, death virus hit me with a week to go until race day. That alone is giving me more confidence.

Here's a link to the course map, the course profile and a detailed course description.

Check back after the race for a full race report. Happy trails!

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