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Sunday, November 26, 2006

Santa Barbara

After 17 hours of travel to get from New Hampshire to Santa Barbara (it was ridiculous) I settled into Chris & Tara’s (vacationing in Hawaii) with Lucy their lab. I had the week to check out Santa Barbara and get ready for Santa Barbara 9 Trails. On Wednesday I went to a wonderful yoga class at Golden Tree Yoga and then to Our Daily Bread for coffee and a muffin, recommended by Dan (Bishop) who used to live in town. BEST MUFFIN! Then I made my way down to Ventura to have lunch with my buddy Craig who works at Patagonia. The Patagonia offices are amazing; for example the parking lot is covered with solar panels which do the obvious and also provide shade for the cars. It was great to visit with Craig and catch up. Craig was one of my first friends in the outdoor industry as he and I worked very closely on the organization of the Montrail/Patagonia team.

RD Luis Escobar
On Friday I joined last year’s champion James Elliot and his friends Rick and Tim to mark the course. Tim and I, both planning on running the race, helped haul chalk and mark trails the first 9 miles. It was fun to run with some locals and ease into the next day’s race. That night I attended the prerace dinner at Savoy Truffles. Paul Shields is a 9 Trails finisher and owns this tasty little restaurant in downtown Santa Barbara. He put together one of the best prerace meals out there and the restaurant was packed. Luis Escobar (RD) and Patsy (race founder and co-RD) entertained us with race facts, important tips and stories from past events.

Chris, Tara and Logan arrived home at 11 on Friday night, I picked them up at the airport, we hurried home, slept for a couple hours then got up for the race. It was a little chilly Saturday morning but the sun rose quickly and only a few miles into the run I was happy I opted for sleeveless and gloves. The top guys took off fast and in an effort to avoid getting stuck I tried to tag along and still keep my heart rate around 150. 9 Trails is an out and back course that connects nine of the foothills trails of the Santa Barbara Mountains. Runners stay between 600ft and 2400ft so there is plenty of climbing and descending to make up the course’s 11k feet of gain. And rocky! The terrain is by no means reminiscent of Miwok’s smooth coastal trails. There is plenty of tricky footing to hold your attention. Some of the highlights include the bamboo tunnel, hot springs and the views of the Channel Islands from Gibraltor Road (only 1 mile of pavement).

On the way out when ducking through the tunnel I missed the overhead pipe (because I was wearing a visor) and knocked myself silly and flat on my back. As I tried to shake that off and get back to running I remembered the Clif shot in my back pocket and my iPod… the iPod was cracked but still playing music and coated in mocha mocha. My first thought was – hey, now I can get that new shuffle.

At the turn around I handed off a water bottle to Stu (race day RD so Luis could run the race) and checked my watch – 3:24. The female course record that I was after was 6:51:31. Realizing I was going to need to work for that record I didn’t spend much time at any of the aid stations and tried to run everything. When lacking motivation I recalled Matt pacing me at Waldo – he made me run more than I thought I could and that paid off so I imagined him doing the same here. To fuel this run Clif donated their new Pina Colada shot bloks and Go Mango shot to the race – both are my new favorites!

Jamie and Jill (Mom's in Motion) finishing relay
Popping out on road to the finish line Patsy was screaming “You broke the record!” with arms wide open waiting to greet me with a huge hug. All I could think was this course chews you up and spits you out into Patsy’s arms and Patsy swallows you whole. I really enjoyed the challenge of this course, the constant change of terrain, the views, the helpful volunteers and excitement for ultras that Patsy exudes. Luis does a fantastic job pulling together this event from the prerace dinner to the miso and sandwiches waiting at the finish line the attention to detail is top notch. The course was marked super well thanks to James, the aid stations were well stocked thanks to Mark and the finish area well organized with results, massage, eats and awards. It is apparent that the community really supports this event and helps add some special touches.


Jessica Deline said...

Krissy - great report! I guess the massage and sandwiches weren't around for us back of the pack finishers ;)

Way to go on the record! You sure were looking strong when I saw you around mile 22:

3:45 PM  
olga said...

Wow, another CR!!! It's so exctitng to "watch" you:) Congrats so much! I should put this one on my list. Just as so many others...

4:46 AM  
Scott Dunlap said...

You are an f#$%#$ing rock star! You beat the course record on your first try? You are amazing.

Congratulations and happy travels back...


10:17 PM  
Krissy Moehl said...

Jessica -
Please send me your email address so we can coorespond. thanks for sending the picture link - you got some great ones from the course.

8:15 AM  
Jessica Deline said...

Krissy, I didn't see your address on the page to send mine to so I'll just put it here.

7:52 PM  
GotLegs! said...

Nice report Krissy! I always enjoy coming along one of your journeys.

- Tony C.

3:30 PM  

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