Got to do a race this weekend that I've been hearing about, and wanting to run for a few years now. The Emerald Bay Trail Run always seems to land on the same day as the Reno Gazette/Journal Jog, and I've usually opted for the closer option - I can ride my bike the mile down to the start of the Journal Jog. This year, though, the Emerald Bay Trail Run is part of the Big Blue series, so I had to drop the Journal Jog and head up to Tahoe.
I headed out early, picked up Amber in south Reno and Abbey in Carson City, and continued on up to the lake. Between construction and a couple of biking events going on, there were a few delays, but we made it to the start area with plenty of time to pick up stuff, warm up a little and mug for photos:
We made our way down to the start area - a good pitch downhill towards the water, which we would have to run right back up a few minutes later. This hill on pavement gets people spread out nicely before entering the singletrack trail. One guy was way out front heading up the hill, then we all disappeared into the trees as we hit the trail.
The course wraps around Emerald Bay from the south to the north, ending at D.L. Bliss park.
I had used the course map from the Big Blue website, which was a Google map and could be transferred to Google earth to view an elevation profile. This is what I was expecting:
And this is the actual elevation profile, from my GPS data:
Not really sure what happened on the Google Earth elevation, but, yeah - not what I was expecting. Just to note, that same process had worked beautifully for a couple of earlier races I had used it for.
At any rate, we were now on the trail and enjoying the great views and awesome trail conditions. There was a little dust at times, but that calmed down once the field stretched out more. At this point, I'm just going to throw some pictures up and let them tell the story. (I had fun with some of the Picnik filters after the fact, especially on the blurry shots...)
Did you see the balloon out over the lake in a couple shots? Must've been a nice day for that...
So after a pounding downhill, the race finished on an awesome beach area. Here are Abbey and Amber coming in:
And pretty soon after that, we joined the group soaking tired legs in the waters of Lake Tahoe:
Stuck around for awards - Abbey took 3rd in her age group, and brought home a pint glass - and I won a heart rate monitor in the raffle. May have a blog giveaway with that one of these days, we'll see. Shuttled back to the other side of the Bay, and headed back home.
While I was a little sorry to have missed the Journal Jog, that was a great race. Super fun and beautiful trail, and of course great company.