Friday, August 24, 2012

Conquer the Bridge 4 Labor Day 9/03/12

If you are looking for a one of kind race in Southern California look no further Than
Conquer the Bridge
The 5 mile race takes you a cross the Vincent Thomas over the port of Los Angeles in San Pedro.  This is the one day of the year that pedestrians have access to the bridge. I believe the view is amazing but I've been too busy racing the last 2 years to take a gander.
This will be you

 Two years ago (Race Report) I ran the race for the first time finishing in second place by a few seconds.  Little did I  realize  going into that a  bridge is one giant hill.  It's a tough course and it gained my respect.
It doesn't matter what place you finish your family will still love you afterwards.
Last year (Race Report) I had been traveling and didn't arrive home until  late the night before the the race.  I was beat up and it showed in my performance finishing 5th
This year my body feels strong and I will be well rested. and hopefully my family will be there not as spectators but running in the event as well.

I have New Sponsor ZZXXZ Clothing, I'll be wearing their gear if you want to check it out and I'm going to do my damnedest to make them proud.

Join on September 3rd 2012 (labor Day

As we 



Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Caballo Blanco Copper Canyons Ultra marathon 2012

(Photo from the 2011 CCUM)
None of this would of ever happened if is wasn't for Caballo Blanco's love for the Tarahumara, running, and for life itself.
May your spirit forever
 Run In Peace.  


My last correspondence with Caballo came on March 20th 2012 He told me to hurry up and get my race report done.
 He was a good friend and a fan of this blog.  About a week later I was 75% done with this race report,  when I got some disturbing news via facebook

Caballo had gone out on a run in the Gila Mountains of New Mexico and never returned.
A few hours after I had heard about Caballo's disappearance I along with a few other friends jumped in a car and drove all night to New Mexico in hope that we could help assist in  finding our friend.
 Unfortunately we arrived too late.
The day Caballo was found I was looking off into the Gila mountains and saw what looked to me to be a faint image of a White Horse Running Free.

It was a pretty emotional time for myself and many of my friends.

When I got back from New Mexico somehow my blog post got erased and my journal of the events had dissappeared.  It was hard for me to write about my beautiful experience in Mexcio without feelings of sadness or loss.  So I decided to put this post on the back burner until I was in a better emotional state to write about the experience.

Wow has it really been 5 months since Mexico?  Perhaps I've put it off too long. A lot has happened since then. The Copper Canyons Ultra Marathon will continue to exist and so shall Caballo Blanco in the hearts that he has touched and in the legs of every runner that who seeks to
RUN FREE.

So without further ado here is my race report.



The trip of a lifetime?

Last year I thought that to be true but now I'm starting think that's a pretty stupid.saying Maybe I should wait till I'm old and grey before I make that proclamation.  Every day a new opportunity to  have my best day ever.
Where this trip ranks on my list so far at the ripe old age
 of 33?  Pretty freaking high.  but that doesn't mean that next year won't  be even better.

Be warned this is more of recap of my adventure than a race report.  Part of what makes this race so special is what it takes just to get there, with that comes many great experience's and bonds that will last a lifetime.
Day 1 
Last year I flew to EL paso (my least favorite city in the USA.)  This time we planned on meeting in Mazatlan. to start aour trip with a few days at the beach.

Travel to the Copper Canyons can be quite exhausting, but if your gonna become exhausted you might as well have fun doing so.

Sidnote:
2 days before leaving I was thumbing through Outside Magazines DANGER issue. It listed Mexico as the most Dangerous Country to visit claiming something like 1 in 15,000 tourists from the United States were murdered last year and then it went on to harp about how dangerous Matzatlan was?


On the plane ride to Matzatlan I chatted up some old dude who goes there at least 3 times a year to go eat seafood.  He personnaly had seen no increase in crime but had read about it.  However tourism was 1/10 what he use to be.  I had no clue where we we staying, heck I never looked on a map to see where exactly Mazatlan was.
Viva Mexico
Exiting on the tarmac in Mexico I felt like the President. I was showered with roses as I waved to my adoring fans. 
(2016 not to far away and when elected my first order of business is to tear that stupid fence down!)

After about an hour line through customs I was hoping to see my buddy Shawn waiting for me at the airport.   The dude's from Utah and all tatted up and he stuck out like a sore thumb. He brought his girlfrined Stephanie along for the trip.  Right off the bat I could tell she was pretty cool and I was stoked to have her join our band of Lunatics.

Our fourth member of our tribe was Scott Smuin head cobbler monkey at Luna Sandals.  Scott arrived an hour after me and about 30 mins later we were at our hotel.

Not to shabby for  $42 a night. 

Shawn the Stephanie sprung an extra $6 for an ocean view.  So Scott and I decided to upgrade as well
Pretty nice waking up each morning to the sound of the surf..
Time to go explore and get some food.

As we were sitting down at some old school  restaurant in the cities Town Square (Overpriced touristy place but they had beer so I was happy).  This dude walks by wearing Luna Sandals!
"What's going on here?"
It was some random dude from Seattle who had just come from Urique (not for the race) and was strolling around Mazatlan? 
(the world just keeps getting smaller)
After
we finished dinner it we dashed back to the beach to catch a glimpse of the sunset
video
Lock up your women and children there are a bunch of Lunatics running down the Streets of Mazatlan.
(I believe this was headline news on CNN)
Since they make gloves for feet AKA Vibrams I wonder if anyone has come up with a sandal for hands?
It felt so good to be running we just kept going.
I think I may have found my soulmate.
She has the most beautiful set of ???  (cough!) fins I've ever seen
They even had a statue dedicated to the Patron goddess of Huaraches.
Eventually we came to this strange tower built out over the rock above a violent ocean.  It had a nice bench at the top but if you scooted over to far it was a 60 foot drop into rocky surf below.
Just when were about to leave a couple guys came up the stairs hootin and hollaring than one of them was gonna jump off and he was trying to solicit donations.

"Are you freaking crazy?"
Just walking down the stairs was death defying enough for us.

Sure enough  "Zee Diver" was crazy and after about 15 minutes of show boating it was time for him to jump.
"Good luck Dude."
video
It was actually pretty anticlimactic by the time he jumped in.
What it would look like if it were light out
The dude was pretty drunk.  He had scars all over his body but it looked like he came out of this dive unscathed. Cliff diving is a traditional way for Mexican men to show off their machismo.
I think this dude was sending off some pheromones that Stephanie was powerless to resist.
Love was deffinetly in the air

The people of Mazatlan thought it was best to lock up this Succubus where she could do no harm but Shawn being the nice guy that he is decided to set Stephanie free.  
This is what you get when you cross an Icubus with a dork.

By now it had been a few hours since are last Avocado during dinner.  It was time we found a supermarket. Plus I needed to pick up some  Tequila for the shower!

We explored the heart of old Mazatlan on our way to the market.

 This church is pretty amazing
And it was protected by Zuul

Avocado's at the market were about .$.50 a piece.
(that's more than I pay in the states)

And when I went to buy my Tequila and beer. I was denied.
(so sad was I)
At the larger markets they arn't allowed to sell after 8 P.M .
Doh!
 As I searched for booze I found numerous sandal stores.
  I wonder if they will ever sell Luna's?

Painted on the outside  wall of our hotel
Translation:
"To Jack Kerouac (1922-1969)
In memory of your stayin these beaches.'
The only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn...'- on the road
Historical Society, MazatlanJune 2001"
Lucky for me I found a liquor store on the way back
Then when I went to relieve myself I learned that in Mexico People wipe there asses with roses.

Day 2

The next morning we decided to hit a more traditional style market
All the produce looked really good
But other than papaya (smelled like puke) and guavas the poduce wasn't very cheap for a gringo!

They did however have the cheapest pig heads I'd ever seen.
We also made it back to the big Supermarket where I did in fact buy 2 bottles of tequilia (which they don't sell in Urique) Not only that I found small vendor across the street selling Avocado's for $20 pesos a piece the best price I would find all trip.  I bought 10 and was ready to party.

Now that I got my booze  on to more important things

"Donde Esta La biblioteca?"
Let's see, there it is right behind the map.

Are goal was to get the beach and although there was a perfectly good beach across the street from our Hotel (left side of the map) we thought we could do better.  This map seems to show some water on the other  side of town?
Hmm maybe we should check this out as well?
On our way back from the market to traversed the most photographed St. in all of Mazatlan
 So might as well take some photos of it.  Right?
Judging by this picture from 1933 that beach from the map does exist.
(or at least it did in 1933)

Time to hit the road
And the streets they were paved with  Beer.
The graffiti here was pretty awesome
I love the colors
It seems some of my relatives had been here before.

The good news we accidentally found the Luna Gallery.

Bad news
The beach on that picture from 1933 does not exist more (probably hasn't for over 50 years)  That didn't faze us much we kept on going till we found till we found where we were?  (what the hell does that mean?)

Cause you know wherever you go, there you are.
Good thing nobody was texting as they walked down this sidewalk.
Eventually we made it this cool Island that had a land bridge going out to it
After a bit of Cado loading with a local kitty we hiked up to the top to check out the view.
Halfway up the view was already amazing


It was a nice climb I decided to take off my Luna's and go at it barefoot.  It's easy to be light on your feet going uphill but heading back down I sure would appreciate having my sandals as an option.

At the top we were rewarded with some of the best views I'd ever seen
Over yonder to the left is Old Mazatlan where we were staying.

We had no idea where we were going and ended up here! I sure hope the rest of this trip goes this well?

A little parched from our hike we decided to pick up some refreshments.
This was by far the coolest mobile coconut stand  I have ever seen.

Life is good
Eventually we fianally made it to the beach after an 8 mile hike we were across the street from our Hotel.  Sometimes it's better to take the path less traveled.
The coconut was delicious and all but I was still thirsty. Can you guess which one was mine?
After smashing the coconuts on the rocks and using seashells to get at their meat.  I used the discarred shells to pop the top off our Beers.
While on the beach Shawn built a sand castle all by himself.
What a special fellow.
We were all flying pretty high
"Hey mom I'm in Mexico"
It was Scot's first time out of the country and boy was he excited.

I tried to jump in the water a bit too soon
and Shawn just sat their hovering in the sky.

The rest of our tribe Barefoot Ted, Eli Claudia and her mystery friend were set supposed to arrive that afternoon and as we walked up to the hotel from the beach there they were. and they were headed down to the sand.
We decided to get cleaned up
After a quick shower we headed back to the sand for a few more rays of sunshine.
Life is tough!
While at dinner at our hotel.  At the table next us sat a gentleman decked out in Solomon running gear from head to toe.  I whispered over to Scott "Hey you think that Dude's in the race?"  Sure enough he was .  The dude's name was Dan Crockett and turned out to be a top notch runner from British Columbia who was also a pretty nice guy.  Why is Dan not in this picture?  Because he was the kind soul who took it for us.
Dinner was fun.  But after which we had to get some rest if we were gonna head out of town the following morning?
At this point none of our plans were really concrete other than we had a race to run in about week. Barefoot Ted really wanted to spent some extra time at the beach so we decided to spend one more day in Mazatlan.
The rest of the night is kind of a blur



Day 3
After heading to to the store for more Avocados (by now I'd purchased 15)  We decided to go on a morning jog back to that Island to show it off to Eli.
What kind of idiot would climb all those stairs?
"Hey Eli want to climb those stairs with me?"
I didn't have to ask him twice.
It was nice have Eli join the mix.  I had first met the dude crewing Bookis at Leadville
At the top we found this big cannon and it turns out in Mexico they use live cats instead of cannon balls.

  We thought about launching that kitten at our friends below but we didn't have a match or lighter.

I'm glad I was sober coming down these stairs.
What are they staring at?
Frigatebird A.K.A. Freakin Bird A.K.A. Party Bat.  The party bats rule sky of Mazatlan
Again we stopped for for coconuts but this time a a spider crawled out right into Eli's ear.
On our way back we found another beach to explore
Where will your Luna Sandals take you?
Mine took me here
Eli may eat a vegan diet in the states but could not resist the temptation of  free crab legs.
If this aint paradise I don't know what is.
It felt good to get my legs spinning a bit.  For the previous month I had done almost no running with a nagging shin injury.  I really hopped it hold up enough to allow me too finish the race but even after a measly 8 mile jog I was well aware that my body was not even close to 100%.  I may have felt like crap physically but that wasn't gonna stop me from having fun.
After a quick shower Eli and I were ready to hit the beach
This pic was taken by a super hot set of conjoined twins who don't drink.
That's why its just 2 dudes in the shower.
Hello Ladies :)
And
I thought beach was beautiful before Sabrina and Claudia arrived. They were not yet inundated  of fart jokes and crude male humor we put Stephanie through.  We were stoked to have them along for the ride
What a beautiful day!
Happy Monkey
(the quickest way to make Ted smile is to give him free wifi)
Beer, beach, avocados and great friends
does it get any better than this?
Nope not really!
Sabrina's passion is Capoeira here she is teaching one of the local's.
Thanks for convincing us to stay another day Ted.
I decided to do a little stretching in preparation for the race coming up.

After another great day, another beautiful sunset
Here's to the good life!

This time I would have  a more tradditional mexican dinner
Day 4
Time to get the hell out of Matzalan but not before a little papaya
(notice the impromptu cutting board)
We rode  in pretty cool VW thing like taxi to the bus Station
"Adios Mazatlan"
Pay toilet are you kidding me?
I can hold it?
I can hold it?
I can hold it?
UGG!
I can't hold it any longer.
Maybe I should jump over the turn style?
Doh!
Fine I'll pay the 50 pesos.  I felt jipped cause I only had to pee.
While they sat.  Scott and I got our game on.
Two handed top spin roller one bounce, nothing but cup.
6 hour bus ride to Los Moches. I expected to be cramped up in some 50 year old bus with a caged chicken on my lap.  I was pleasantly surprised to be riding in one of the nicest buses I had ever rode in (Mercedes Benz).  They even had the critically acclaimed Martin Lawerence movie National Security  playing on it'd DVD system.  Shawn was totally captivated.
It felt like we were on the bus forever.  When I looked out the window it seemed we'd gone to far?
Good thing we brought some rations.
I did a little journaling along the way.
We could of stayed the night here but we decided to keep trekking forward so we would have to wake up as early in the next morning to catch a train
Off that bus and on to another one for a few more hours to La Fuerte.
What a long day of laziness.
The world outside looked very foreign indeed 
Scott and I passed the time with a little Zombie Dice
Barefoot Ted Partaked in some tea tree toothpicks
Welcome to La fuerte.  Off the bus in this tiny litle dirt road town.
We immediately found a really cool place to stay
On our way to dinner we came across this piece of art.  It's resemblance looks strikingly familiar.

After a long day in the bus you know what we needed?
A shower of course!
We could realy use some shot glasses?
Drunken ingenuity at it's finest.
Day 5
 The dude at the hostel cooked us up some good Napales
 Our cab driver to the train station only had one leg.  I thought he was pretty cool.
 "Where is the Train Ted"
There it is.
 Looks like a train to me
(there was a group of about 20 European tourists pilled up to get this photo so I jumped  into the huddle and got one myself
" Viva' Chihuahua"
Also known as the "Chepe"
 On the train we ran into a few more racers
Ted made a new friend
Look at them happy monkeys
 This place looks almost as dangerous as Mazatlan
After about 6 hours
 We arrived in Bahuichivo are final destination before Urique.  We had a few hours to kill. I went off on my own and who did I find?
Mas Locos Carlos and Kermet.
I first met these dudes last year in the Copper Canyons and since then I ran into them at Both Badwater and Across the Years.  I was stoked see to see the two ogf them not only because there really good people but because they new the best hole in the wall resaurant to eat in town.

  $40 pesos for a good lunch with awesome tortillas, a Cerveza, and some of the best salsa verde I'd ever had.
 Almost there just 3 more hours on a bus.
The last stretch is on and old bumpy ass dirt road to the bottom of the Copper Cnyons.  For this stretch we rode in a old school bus that was probably decommissioned in 70's.
Finally I feel like I'm in Mexico

 The wheels on the bus round and round, round and round, round and round.
(other than the lack of chicken's this is the type of bus I had envisioned.)
 Pee stop. lol
Urique I have found it!
 While posing for another  pic I snuck a quick one myself

 Back on the Bus
Hey Dude!

 Almost there
Sweet.
as we drove into into down we got our first glimpse of this tears mural.
Although Caballo call's the race
"The Copper Canyons Ultra marathon"
the people of Urique call it by a different name in honor of the man/horse that started it.

Welcome To Urique.
 Home for the next 6 days
Entre Amigos A.K.A Keith's place A.K.A. The Farm.
 We ended up scoring the bunk house
Which had 5 cots for the 8 of us.
 While others unpacked Eli and got down to business with a quick game of Ping Pong at the communal dinning room table..
The entire Hostel if pretty damn amazing.  This a view of one of the main communal rooms. I think Caballo and Maria got the love nest up top.


 With in an hour of arriving we found ourself at Mam Tita's for some grub
As if Steph wasn't cute before.  Have you ever seen a more beautiful site?
I think Scott has maybe had the total of one beer in his life.  Now he's drinking two at a time
Crazy?
I love this place
 Day 6
The plan was to get up early and go on the group hike to the top of Los Alisos for a grapefruit. (18 miles round trip)  We were running a bit late.
By the time we got to Mama Tita's everyone had left. I told her how beautiful she looked and she gave me a big smile. :)  

 No worries I knew the way from last year.
 Another stressful day in Mexico
 As we hiked, up rode film maker Sterling Noren whom was documenting the event.  Showed us how much easier hiking is on a motorcycle.  He was also here back in 2009, check out his video here.
For the first few days of the trip I was wearing a new prototype pair of  Luna Sandals.  I was starting to get a blister between the toes which I really didn't want to deal with during the race so I went barefoot for awhile. Not only did it it feel great on my feet but when I put my sandals back on I had fine layer of dust on my feet which kept my blister from getting any worse that day.
 The locals were pretty cool.
 by the time we got to the bridge we had caught up with the rest of the group.
Running across that bridge made me feel like a kid at Disneyland's Tom Sawyer's Island.
Rock painting of the mythical two headed Mexican cow
(sorry for the horrible picture)

And not more than 100 feet away from that painting  there it was
(some photoshop required)
Marching up the hill with my Feloow Mas Loco's
 Along the way we bumped into German Silva winner of the 1994 New York Marathon whom was famous for making a wrong turn during at the last mile left and then comming back to win  Steph was a bit smitten
Who knew I was such a giant?
He turned out to be really nice guy.  I hiked with him for while.  He was very intrigued by my sandals.  Telling me all bout how he wore Huaraches as a child.   Hopfully we can get him in a pair of Lunas someday.

Eli had to stop a few times along the way.

 At the top of the hill Eli and I posed for a pic with Steph. Man were we ripe with B.O! (lol) and she was assulted by it from both sides.  Being the gentlemen that we are
 Eli and I thought it was only fair if we went in for a whiff ourselves
It smelled like roses
(yeah right)

We hiked all this way for a grapefruit and the trees looked barren. Last year there was all  the grapefruit you could eat but because of a pretty nasty drought the trees were not producing as much fruit.
Scurvy was starting to set in and I was determined to find some fruit.  After scanning the trees for a bout 10 minutes I finally found a cluster.
Before Grapefruit
  Eli volunteered to shimmy up the tree.
 And a few minutes later I was eating the best grapefruit I ever had.  Funny thing is back a the hostel we were told that all the grapefruits were sour.
After grapefruit
Soon after we plucked our grapefruit a farmer  from the property came out with a big pole and managed to find just enough grapefruit for everyone
 A few Tarahumara runners joined us on the hike and it was my pleasure to share some grapefruit with them
 The world famous Coury Brothers arrived at the top about 15 minutes after us even though they began their journey hours after we had.
time to head back down
video
This video is really crappy but I shot it so might as well use it right?
 Near the bottom I ran Into the Sexiest Grandma I know look at her all decked out in her Moeben Camo's
Looking good La Mariposa  A.K.A. Maria Walton
Then out of nowhere Jeremy from Germany came flying by not only is he fast he's a pilot a paramedic and probably spends his nights as a masked vigilante.

BY the time I got to the bottom of the hill I was relly looking forward to ditching my sandals and getting in the river
Sabrina and a few others were already swimming 
We found rock for both sunbathing an jumping off of.  One of the coolest parts of the morning was when Stephanie who can not swim and was some what scared of water, overcame her fear, dog paddled over to the rock and dove in.  We were all very proud of her.

 Shawn was feeling sick that morning so he din't go on the hike,  I guess he was feeling cause there he was on the bridge but why was he wearing Ted's underwear?
 Maybe he was wearing Ted's underwear because he only had a blue speedo and didn't want to steal Scott's thunder.

  I had only brought about 26oz of water with me for the hike and swim and was getting thirsty.  About 3 miles away there was a little shack that sells nothing but Tecate.

While the rest of the group was dilly dallying my buddy Caleb and I took off.
Along the way this dude comes by on his horse happy as can be. He really wanted to shake our hands?.   After fist pump we did the soft finger slide hand shake traditionally done by the Tarahumara.
What a cool dude!

It turns out there was no need for us to go off ahead. after a couple of miles our amigos rolled up in th back of a pick up truck.  We jumped in and drove the rest of the way and lucky for us nobody fell out.
It was no Stone Ale but at the time it was perfect.
I think the're chanting my name "Sweeney, Sweeney!"
(this nice thing about having a blog is I make up what ever I want)
Bogdan the Great.  
I even got a share a beer with my friend from last year
While there we found a weird owl pellet just siting on the road.

Don't mess with dude's from Luna Sandals cause were tough. 
There's that dude  we shared our grapefruit with
 Sandal check
 Scott was kind enough to grab him a beer.
We decided to casually stroll back to town
 If you wear Luna sandals you too will be this fast!
 I think we were running at about a 3 min mile pace.
( for about 65 feet)
You see Steph wasn't wearing Luna's and she could barely keep her balance.
 Every year they paint a different mural on this wall for the race.
And a new name gets added to the list .  Who will it be this year?

I stopped by the  the market for a few avocados and some candy on my way back to Keith's place.  While there who did we run into? None other that Batopilas's greatest runner and cool dude Arnulfo Quimare. He had watched us enter and wanted to come shake our hands.  We were very humbled by the fact that he was just as excited to see us as we were to see him.
( What a cool dude!)
I will often eat Peanut Mazapan while racing Ultras back in the States and would deffinetly pack some in my drop bag for this race.
Along the way we ran into "Erbalisto" he was looking for Caballo Blanco whom was also staying at Keith's place. I shared some of my candy  him and he joined us on our way back to the farm.
(Erbalisto has ran in every single CCUM and is a good friend of Cabollo Blanco's)

  We found Caballo just as about 15 runners from Batopilas arrived.
Those our some handsome dudes.
When Caballo gives a speech to Gringo's it's usually pretty interesting but his delivery a little bit dry, but here talking with The Tarhumara a people that have a pretty good poker face to the outside world.
 He had them all smiling and Laughing excited about the race to come.
Everyone in the race was treated like family by Caballo Blanco and the feelings are reciprocated right back to him by the Tarahumara.

 Maria had handed out a few free hats to some of the runners whom didn't have one.  This kid it the red shirt was so happy.  You could tell that this hat meant the world to him (that he now had his own hat like the other men)  He was trying to keep his emotions in check and It was a very touching moment to witness.
La Mariposa and I
The Mexican government had promised to supply dinner for the Tarahumara that night but the cow had not arrived.   
 Caballo  took the group down to Mama Tita's opened up his own wallet and made sure they all had a good meal.
"Korima"
 For me it was time graze in the garden
 All you can eat Leafy greens
I think I could live here and be perfectly content.
  I like going on trips with a bunch of Vegans
Chef Smuin
 WHile others cooked I tried  to get Nick's moose wet by flashing camera at him. During a game of Elk Fest
Rub a dub dub thanks for the grub!
Bon Apatite
 After dinner we had a talent show
 Who doesn't like a smoking monkey?
Attention Humane society He did not inhale

That night Claudia told me she was going to a local ladies house to learn how to make tortillas tomorrow morning and asked if I wanted to tag along.  I hadn't spent that much time with her and Sabrina and figured this would be good experience
Day 8
Up bright an early at the coffee shop.
(An outdoor fireplace where we could boil water)

As I was stumbling around the kitchen eating breakfast  young Tarahumara girl came by selling Nopales.  She said somthing about 20 so grabbed 20 pesos. next thing I know I got 20 pieces of cactus
Tonight we feast.

After Breakfast it was a off to go make tortillas with Sabrina, Claudia, Scott, and Eli.  A nice lady who sometimes works at the hostel we were staying at took us over to her mother's house just a few blocks away.
Along the way Claudia bought some pinole from a local
He we are.

How to make a tortilla.
Start with a bunch of Maiz
Grind away
using space age technology
Or Stone age if you wish
Drink lots of beer because grinding hard work.
Make sure you have plenty of chickens to clean up after you.
After your done grinding the maiz add a little lime and water
Make a ball and then toss it over your head a few times.
Flatten the ball on the palm of your hand
Pat the tortilla or should I say Pat and the tortilla
Get a nice fire going

and slap it down on the pan
Now that I taught you how to make totilla's, do you want to learn how we roast our coffee down here?

"Hell Yeah, I mean yes please."

They only had enough coffee for their own personal supply if we wanted to make our own  someone had to go to the store and get some beans,
I volunteered and sprinted maybe the 2 mile round trip run barefoot through the town of Urique.  Contrary to popular belief.  If you go Barefoot in Urique both Tarahumara and locals look at you like crazy.  By this time there were quite few Tarahumara runners kicking back in the shade along the main street in Urique.
I got quite a few smiles and bewildered looks.  Along he way two local yelled out to me
 "El Animal!"
(Tangent time)
Last year while running the race caked in blood in dirt from an early fall no less than ten random strangers cheered me on by yellng out "El Animal." It was then that I realized I had no spirit animal, rather my spirit was perhaps the bastard child of  some drunken orgy on Noah's boat.

On to the coffee making
I was back in Jiffy
(how long is jiffy? I have no clue)
Roast the Beans
Stir the Beans
(I'm doing a really lousy job
Eli However was a natural
Add Sugar?
I was surprised by this step but it helps to make sure that every bean gets roasted
Eventually you end molten bean paste.  We were warned to be very careful not to let it touch our skin when transferred from the pan.
Grind away with the stone
Scott was really getting into it.
Or you could use the modern grinder.
 (Those chickens are gonna be pretty high on caffeine if they clean up after us again.)
I'm not sure why this pic exists but since it does, here it is.
Muy Delicioso

After we were done making coffee we were given given a third offer.
You want to learn how to make tesquino later this afternoon?

I sure did! but I also want to go swimming?

"How bout you come by tomorrow and partake in the finished product?"

You betcha
:)
We all felt very privileged to be taken into this families home.
Guila and her mother could not have treated any better.
Beatiful People, beautiful friends, beautiful experience
I love Mexico!
Even the trash was Gorgeous.
Except the White trash that is.

We headed back to Kieth's place to get Ted, Shawn and Stephanie before heading down to the river.
Ted was feeling a little under the weather and although we tried we couldn't drag him out of bed.
Nice Backpack Steph!
Nice back pack Scott
Off to the river
We walked out of town up the dirt road (part of the CCUM course) toward the bridge looking for a good place to swim
Last year this was a good place but because of  the drought Urique was in currently under going we needed to find somewhere else

If the Beatles were a bunch of sandal wearing lunatics in Mexico the cover of Abbey Road might have looked something like this.
"Geronimo!"
Here's a deep thought for you:
What do you Suppose Geronimo yelled when he jumped off rocks into the river?"
Barefoot Ted caught up with us just as we about to leave.  He was a little bummed to have missed out on all the fun but there was sure to be more fun to be had later.

I've said it before and I 'll say it again
I love my Luna Sandals
Claudia had been injured before heading down to Mexico.  The trip was taking its toll on her ankle and by now she could barely walk.  Luckily Sterling was there to rescue her on his motorcycle.
Although riding on motorcycle seemed like fun I was perfectly happy to walk back to town with Mi Amigos.
Bookis Fell in love with this cactus last year. Unfortunately he couldn't make it down to Mexico this year.  We took this picture to let him now we were thinking about him.
The best way to make sure all the needles have been taken out of your Naples (cactus) is too slap your friend across the face with it.  If they don't scream your good to go.
I think were safe
Dork
Doofus
and Dumbass
Lets cook
Lets eat
By now we felt like one big happy family.

After dinner it was time for a shower!
The dude In the back Pat Muldowney I had never met before. He knew I who I was  and of my love for Stone Ale and brought me a Six pack of Stone IPA down to Urique all the way from Arizona.

"Dude you just made yourself a friend for life. Thanks Pat."
I think we had a record 7 or 8 Mas Loco's in the shower together.  We decided to keep passing the bottle around until it was empty or until someone could handle no more.  After about 5 go-arounds Jamil Coury was the bailed out.  

My belly was full and my spirits we inebriated, What next?
How bout some late night basketball with the locals.

Last Year Bookis and Shawn played with some Local kids I chose to be smart and rest. I wasn't gonna make that mistake again


It was Friday and of above the Sleepy little town of Urique it seems the basketball court was the place to be.
A few  hundred kid's grown ups and tareahumara sat in the stands watching players slide all over the place on a pretty nice basketball court that had fine layer of dust on top it.

Judging by how many people were there are chances of getting to play seemed very slim. But once again we were embraced by the Mexican local's and were in the midst of a game 10 minutes after we arrived.
My buddy Tony and Eli turned out to pretty damn good players. But it was Shawn that had all the Local teenage girls swooning over him.  Here he is riding on Eli's back presumably ready to jump off for a slam dunk.

Team Gringo needed one more point to win.  We only had one hope "Get the ball to Stephanie."   The shot went up banked off the glass and team Gringo wins.  This happened at 10:59 and unbenouced 
At 11:00 p.m. the lights suddenly turned off
After the game some of local teenage  kids wanted us to hang out.  But it was time for us to go. (bright and Early the next mornting Sterling was gonna film us running in our Luna Sandals for his documentary)  As we walked back to the farm.  We were followed by group of girls chanting

"Gingo's, Gringo's Gringo's.
(I thought that was very cool)

Day 9
The ever stoic Barefoot Ted
Which way to he go.
He went that a way!
Here were are
Coming down the street.
The craziest runners
That you ever did meet.
Hey, Hey Lunar Monkees
(sung to the tune of the Mokees televsion show)
Way to project Eli.
DUDE!

Sandals
Skull
(maybe I'm getting a little lazy with my descriptions)
"El Animal"
Eli wanted to bring the cow skull home but figured it would be too much of a pain to get it through customs.
( I think Sterling ended up Driving it back to the states.)

Time to go Pick up race shirts
As each international runners name was announced they were greeted with warm cheers along with a smile and hand shake Caballo.

It turns out many of the friends we made playing basketball the night before were there helping out.
(the dude in the black shirt Is Urique's 3 point specialist)
That's the sexiest Grandma.  "looking good Maria!'

"Hey Guadajuko"
(Caballo's dog was a bit jealous of all the love caballo had for his runners)
Caleb and Ted look ready to go
Nice toe Splay.
I had a brought a sleeping bag with me that I wasnt using and decided to head over to the Tarumara camp and see if I could find someone to give it to0

View from the bridge
When we arrived at the encampment we found few Tarahumara woman that we hoped could use our sleeping bags and blankets
Korima
when you have extra it is never really yours to begin with.  Thus there Is no need for a thank you and reciprocity occurs harmoniously  along side with supply and demand.
(I think that makes sense)
The kids over there loved seeing there picture on the screen of  the camera. Although they did try and hide there smiles.
:)
The vibe at the Tarhumara camp was very peaceful  and quiet
We watched and observed the scene for a few moments
And
 are best not bother anyone an just kind of  and slipped in and out of there camp very quietly.
After leaving the camp we ran into our from the other day.  He had a lttle too much to drink and although he got completely hammered on this, the day before the race he would go to be among the top finishers the following day.
Check out the boots

Off to Mama Tita's for lunch
At lunch we ran into Syed this little dude stuck to us like glue last year.  He's real nice kid and I was stoked to see a familiar face
While at Mama Tita's a wandering Marachi band provided some entertainment.  They even played "Viva Chiuaua." Upon my request.
World reknowned beer drinker, race director and runner Chris Rios posing with Caleb.
Tough Guy?
Babe!
Tourist!
After lunch we headed over to Guilla's home to try out the Tequino 
Just like mom use to make.
This looks.... umm delicious?
Here's to you
And here's to me
Friends forever shall we be
And if we are to ever disagree
to hell with you
here's to me!
Salud!
Although this was the variety the serve to children you could taste the fermentation.  It's a taste I could aquire if my Stone sponsorship ever runs out or if I ever get sent to a federal penitentiary.  I wonder if 'll ever get a chance to try the Night Train version. 
Once again Guilla an her family treated us like we had been friends for years. Which I truly hope comes to fruition.

 That night there was big fiesta planned in honor of the race.  We had an hour or two to kill until then.
 Come on dude's we got a party to attend
Eli showing off  the form he was planning on using the following day.
 Ted was ready to go
 I found this odd.
I found the Arizona contigency hanging out on the corner
Screw Santa Claus Shawn wood is my Hero.
Shawn had bought a bags full of school supplies which he handed to the local children that swarmed him
 Shawn and Stephanie went back to the store at least 3 times too buy more pens, pencils and stickers.
I wouldn't be surprised if
Songs of his kindness will be written in his honor and sung by children for years to come
"Donde, donde,,,,, Donde Esta Shawn."
"Donde, donde,,,,, Donde Esta Shawn."
 What a fun night with great friends.  But we better get some sleep.

Race day
(day 10 if your still counting)
As usual I was up before my alarm which was set for 5 a.m.  I slept well and was exceited about the day a head of me.
 I arose feeling pretty good and did my best to get everyone else going
Wake of Scott
 Eli woke up looking like he had just finished the race.
As everyone was shuffing around I looked over a Claudia who was sitting on her bed.  about 9 inches behind her head crawling up the wall was a big old terantula. It must of sounded like I was joking because instantly like kid jacked up on soda and candy I belted out "Claudia Claudia big spider behind you." for her sake I'm glad she believed me.
How you like that crawling on your face in the middle of the night?

After some last minute preperations I was ready to go
I offered to share my butt paste (free sample from another race) but noboby took me up on the offer.  How strange?
 My drop bad was ready to go. Now it was time to head down to the starting line

Today we shall embrace our lunacy!
We mosied down to the starting 
Everyone was super excited.
 Bothers!
The big day had finally arrived time. Time to have some fun boys

The Course
The course consist of basically of three loops.
Loop one 10 miles
heads out of Urique about two miles on a dusty unpaved road to a large Cement bridge Once across the bridge there's about there miles of up and own fire roads that take you Old church at Guadalupe Coronado where you reach the first aid station.  You the then take the same fire road back the way you came until you crass the bridge again
Loop Two, 11 miles
Continues to take you up the dusty road that brings you into Urique After a mile or so of tough climb in turn of on to a trail for a 4 mile single track climb to the top of the hill where you reach aid station 2 at Mes Naranjo.  Runners then proceed down a step fire trail about 4 miles until they are back at the bridge where the keep running all the back through the town of Urique.
Loop 3 18miles
Takes you for about 5 miles on the dusty unpaved road with a bit of climbing  as it follows the side of the river. You  go through a neighboring village and eventually end up at a large suspension bridge.  cross the the bridge and then begin a long steep 4 mile hike to the top of Los Alisos before returning back to Urique the same way you came.
Bonus repeat loop
Runners then head out Urique to repeating loop one and heading back to town after the bridge.

The course has roughly 9,300 feet of elevation gain and is moderately difficult from technical stand point.  There is very little coverage in the canyon and temperatures will get hot.

RUNNERS 
This year there was about 350 Tarahumara runners 80 or so international (up from 30 something last year) and another 100 or so Mexican Nationals.

Prizes
There were some serous cash payouts for both the top 10 men and women. But that's not what is really important any runner who finishes the first 21 miles would receive a food voucher, finish the next loop and receive another voucher.  Finish the entire race and receive a voucher for around 200kg worth of food.
(i don't remember the exact amount but I think that was about right)

Game plan.
1. Don't Fall
2. Start slow
3. listening to my body
4.don't die  (automatic disqualification)
5. Make friends
6. Smile

 In my current state running a 50 mile race was probably not a good idea but I figured I could at the very least hobble my way around the course, plus if I can finish the race somebody's gonna get whole bunch of food.

Nothing to it but to do it
judging by this pic it looks like I was starting behind about 30 people

 but by the time the races started there were few hundred heads in front of me but that was part of my strategy to go slow at the start

Cool video SKip to the 6:05 mark if you want to see the start of the race.
the next thing I knew I was flowing down the street in a sea of Humanity.  The pack was so frenzied I felt like I could save my legs and float as if at a Gwar concert but the last time I did that I chipped a tooth.


Unlike your typical Ultra where even the leaders start out at a cool and collected pace.  Here everyone starts out fast and most are doing so grinning from ear to ear.

Out of town and out to the bridge 2 miles away there was at least 100 people in front of me IOncluding teenage girls in dresses and dudes wearing jeans.

When I got to mile four the same spot where took a dive the year before.  I took it real slow.  About 5 steps after he fact began congratulating myself with laughter for not falling this time.
My legs all of sudden clicked together!
"Not again"

Luckily I recovered before hitting the ground thanks too the extra traction on my Luna Lead Cat Sandals that I had decided to wear instead my usual Luna Originals.
I coasted to the first turn around point at mile 5 feeling good running at a 9 minute pace. Much slower than last year but at least this time I didn't have blood pouring out of my body.
Eli however was not as lucky.
On the way back from the turn around it was great to see all my friends heading out.  Most of them had smiles on their face including Eli although he also seemed to be wearing some kind of war paint?

I would find out after the race that while filming the start as ELi took his  took his very first steps he decided to film the runners behind him as he continued to move forward into a speed bump.
He went flying and yes it's all on video hopefully I'll get it posted here someday.
Making the best out of bad situation Eli decided paint his face with the blood that was now coming out of his knees.

Through mile ten I felt good as I entered the first major climb.  I passed a ton of runners during this stretch but that's only because I started slow.

On the way up I started running with a 14 year old kid from Urique Named Sergio. He had ran the race last year but was unable to finish.  I shard some water to with him and we would stick together much of the next 12 miles.


Once I got the top at Mesa Naranjo I was greeted by Diego (the Gringo who drove us all down to Urique last year) he filled my bottles and gave me a few words of encouragement before heading back down the mountain into town
The road back down is a very steep fire trail that cosists of a very hard packed dirt with a layer of loose rock on top.  Last year I had to go slow because of lack of traction while many Tarahumara left me he dust.


This year it was the complete opposite.  I was flying and passed nearly everyone in my sites.  The one dude I didn't pass was a tiny old Tarahumara man.who instead of taking the fire road decided to go off the trail straight down the side of the mountain.

This mountain goat of a man was blazing his on trail and making it look easy.

Side note on Course cutting:
Cutting the Course at the Coper Canyons is not encouraged but is tolerated. There are at least 50 little short cuts on the race (some actually seem harder than staying on the switch backs) that nearly every Tarahumara runner take as well as many gringos.  I wouldn't encourage it and I didn't feel like taking any of these short cuts but as long as none of the runners are in contention to win I don't really have a problem with it. However there are about 5 spots on the course where a person can cut significant parts of the course which can be a little frustrating especially when you see a gringo  taking one of them when he or she should know better.

I don't feel that the Tarahumara are trying to cheat, they are just trying to practical by running the way they would if thiswere not a race.  As for the old dude going down the side of the mountain, the route he took was pretty crazy and I was left in awe at how fast he was able to descend.
(I think he could have given Killian Jornet a run for his money


I got back into Urique at mile 20 feeling pretty good
While stopping at my drop bag for some dates the 1st place woman sailed passed me.  As I once again heard a few chants of "El Animal"

Time for the second loop out to Los Alisos.  I was moving pretty well for the frist 20 miles and I continued to feel decent all the way out the suspension bridge.  By now the weather was really starting to heat up. It felt like it was near 100 degrees at the bottom of the canyon.

Just after I crossed the bridge I was passed By the first place runner going the other way and it was Gringo from the Czech Republic followed by Miguel Laura (last years winner) and German Silva.

Up the switchbacks I found myself walking more than I should.  The sun was getting to me and a mild bit of heat stroke was setting in.  I felt like I had been hydrating well but in the week leading up to the race I had done a lousy job drinking water.
( I had tried to avoid drinking from the local tap in an effort to keep a strong immune system)

At the top of Los Alisos I sat down (something I never do during races) I ate a small bean burrito had some pinole and took a few minute break.before heading down the hill.  On the way down to the bottom of the hill I passed Caballo, Scott, and Ted.

Then after crossing the bridge I ran into Diego again. He offered me the Local Electrolyte formula which I gratefully excepted. It tasted like ocean water but did it's job and I took off running at a good pace.  I was feeling good again and passed Shawn and Eli who were still heading the opposite direction.

At about Mile 41 Across the street from the Tecate stand I had desperately wanted to stop at I ran into a dude carrying a 2 liter coke bottle filled with a murky substance that he really wanted me to try
Instantly I Knew what it was.
"Tesquino"
I think I was the first runner to take him up on offer and two his pleasure I grabbed the bottle and took a giant chug.
"Aye Yi Yi"
(It was about 10 times more potent than what I drank the day before)
The dude had a big smile as I took off running trying to decide if that was the best or worst thing I had ever drank?

Back into town at mile 42ish in under 7 hours I was hoping to do the final 10 miles in 2 hours.  At the pace I was currently moving it seemed like a realistic goal?
"Wrong"
The winner of the race Miguel Laura had just come in with a new course record and I still had 10 miles to go.
I headed out of town as the top runners began to stream in.  With the Czech dude finishing 2nd and the German Silva in third both finishing faster than the prior course record.

The weather was still scorching and I would have given anything for cold beverage.  One of the things that makes the race tough is the lack of Ice. (Something I take for granted back home) All the water given out at the aid station is hot. In contrast to my feeling like crap dreaming I had an Icee.  Coming at me in the opposite direction comes the Tarahumara kid smoking a giant doobie, wearing cut off jeans, and not even carrying any water and about to finish the race as one of the top 20 finishers.
.Did I really see what I think I saw?
YEP

As I was struggling up and down the fire road I saw a few gringo's including one of the top women finishers come up the side of the hill cutting a substantial  portion of the course on their way to the finish.  I was disappointed at this sight but I guess they had their reasons.  By the time I  about a mile and half from the aid Station and almost out of water.  I passed my buddy Tony who was struggling as bad as I was.  He was sitting down sucking on few limes and offered me one which gratefully accepted.

Tony was able to pull himself together and passed me while I shuffled my up to Guadalupe Coronado. By the time I got there I was very weak.  I sat down and grabbed some bottled water at the aid station. It took me multiple tries before I had enough focused strength  to twist the cap off the bottle.  I downed about 40oz of water and then sprayed my face with a near by hose before heading out.

I only had 5 miles to go and the race would be over.  I thought I was now in the clear but I was wrong. I was only about a mile out from Guadalupe Coronado when my body began to shut down.

My hands began  tingle, I needed to sit down and I needed some shade.  Because I still had almost 2 full bottles of water I wasn't too worried but my prognosis wasn't good.
I found rock put my bottles down and before I know it I was out cold.  I thought passing may be be a possibility and I was ready for it.  I'm not sure how long I was sleeping but somewhere between 5 and 15 minutes later I was awake and walking to the finishline.

After a painstakingly slow mile I got back to a jog as passed Scott going the other direction
pretty amazing that he was able to get this pic with me moving so fast.

 Scott looked in great shape.  This was the farthest he had ever ran and there was no doubt in my mind that he wouldn't finish the race.

With about 2.5 miles left to go I started running again.  Just before getting to the final bridge I passed Shawn who was heading the opposite direction now being paced by his girlfriend Stephanie. Last year he ran out of day light and was unable to finish.
This time he was well ahead of last years pace and it looked like well on his way to a great finish.
Last year as I entered Urique My Theme song "GO PATO" miraculously started playing on my mp3 player. This year a Nouvelle Vague cover of the Killing Moon came on.  Not really the upbeat heart thumper I was looking for, which may explain my lazy heel strike as I neared the finish or it could be the fact that my body was completely spent.

I think my Official finishing time was about 10 hours and 45 minutes.
 The prior injury to my shin nagged me the whole way but never came close to knocking me out of the race.  Lack of training because of the injury is what really did me in. Under the circumstances I was proud of my efforts. Two years in a row injuries have left me unfit to really compete in this race.  If  healthy I think I'm capable of running a sub 7 hour 30 minutes race but talk is cheap and I will do my best to make this a reality next year.

I needed a beer asap!
I had a Stone ale on Ice in Mama Tita's cooler but somehow it disappeared but this Tecate treated me well for the time being.
The finish line it looked like a battle had just been fought and judging by the emtions on everyone's faces our tribe had won.
 These smiles from my fellow Mas Loco's are worth more than gold to me.
Time to sign some autographes for my adoring fans. :) The girl in the center "Olivia" became our friend last year.  These  kids were as sweet as can be and really put a big smile on my face as they tried to get autographs from all the runners
 One of my favorite pics of the whole trip, my buddy Kevin seconds after finishing the race trying to collect and comprehend the days events .
Well Done Dude!
Congrats to Olaf
The race took it's toll on a lot of runners.  Many of my friends and the Tarahumara alike were unable to complete the entire course.  But there efforts did not go in vain.  Nearly everyone eared some amount of Food vouchers and  deserved to be proud of themselves for that.

El Presidente The Spokes Monkey himself
(Thank you Ted for making my dream of coming down to the Copper Canyons a reality 2 years in row)

I decided to head up to the Keith's place to get cleaned up and pick up my beers. But along the way I ran into Sabrina whom had some how read my mind and brought one down for me.
(my mind is pretty easy to read)
Life was pretty good at this moment.
You never know who's gonna become your new best friend.
When Scott came through the finish line he was greeted by big hugs from all of us
He finished the race running stride for stride with his new best Friend Flint
Good Job Boys
Guadjuko
Did I mention that Life is good?

I am such a bad influence.
Maria is one of the sweetest people I have ever met in my life! And also one of my favorite people to share a beer with. Sterling aint so bad either
Family.
Bogdan and his wife Ellie are such cool positive people.  Every time a saw them they had big smiles on their face and kind words to share.  One of my highlights during the race was seeing Ellie on the hike up to Mesa Naranja.  I don't think she's arunner but she figured she could at least hike the first 21 mile loop and earn a food voucher which she could donate to someone who needed it.
(she's pretty cool in my book.)
Get a room you 2.
Way to go completing your first 50 mile race!
(he would go on to finish his first 100 mile race just a few weeks later)
As we began to pose for a group photo  a 5th friend we didn't even know we had tried to jump in
The dude was pretty sauced up  (but meant no harm)
Being the bad influence that I am.  I motioned to him to show off his rack (the way you would motion to a girl a mardi gras)  Too my surprise the dude took off his shirt.

It was pretty funny to witness but then the dude couldn't figure out how to get it back on. I got a little worried when a police officer  walked up carrying a big gun.  (I thought maybe he was gonna take the guy off to jail and I felt real bad because I was partly to blame for this spectacle.)  Too my surprise the Police man smiled put down his weapon and helped the drunk hombre put his shirt back on.
Lesson learned:
Just because a dude is carrying a giant assault riffle in Mexico it doesn't make them a bad person.
After comparing battle wounds and sharing a few tails of the day it was time to find Ted and Eli and head back to the Farm for some shut eye.
It turns out they were already getting some sleep facedown with their heads on the table at Mama Tita's restaurant
While most people looked beat up and tired after the race Team Coury Bros. and Company looked like they were ready to go out and run the course again.
It was a tough race for both Tony and I and it was great to see him with a smile on his face later that night.
Nacho
Last year I spent a lot of time with Nacho.  He made me pair of Huaraches and he rode In Van with  us all the from Urique to Creel after the race.  His nickname is Nacho Boracho and the least I could do to repay him for his kindness is offer him a Stone IPA.   I really doubt he had ever had an ale with that much hops.  After taking a big chug he gave me a thankful smile of gratitude.
Nice shirt Caleb.
My sandals held up great and I couldn't asked for a better pair of Huaraches.  I am very fortunate to be part of the Luna Sandals family.  Thank You to everyone at the factory for your support and continued encouragement of my Lunacy.


Rise and shine Eli.
Good Bye Friends.
It turns out there were still two cold beers left in the fridge.
 Back on the rickity old bus out of town
A cold Stone IPA ale at 9 a.m. Never tasted so good.
I think Steph would agree
So long Urique.
Ted said he had actually rode on that bus years ago.
This picture was actually taken in Bahuichivo but who knew Urique was that old.  It turns out Urique had a gold boom at the end of the 17th century.
Damsel in distress
(The train engineer was cracking up laughing)
"Hey Steph go law down on the tracks for picture."
Shawn is lucky dude to have such a cool girlfriend but I guess she's lucky too cause Shawns a pretty cool dude as well.
While waiting for our train to arrive in Bahuichivo, being the good influence that I am I picked up a few sling shots as souvenirs for my nephews.  I had to test them out to make sure they worked right?
My skills paled in comparison to this Caballero
Claudia made some local boys day when she posed for this pic.
Back on the train for the rest of the day
we arrived in Los Mochis that evening
and
proceeded to take a bus all night back to Mazatlan
Where we arrived before the sun did, and since since our flight did not leave until that afternoon we decided to camp out on the beach
The sun finally came up and so did the tide

Unfortunately for Eli  he was sleeping on his towel when tide surged soaking him and his camera
Poor little guy
:(
An unforgettable experience was coming to an end.
and it was time to head to off to the airport
I few a had a few Avocados left which I scarfed down before boarding the plane.
So long my Mexico thank you for all the Beautiful memories.

Epilogue.

I could of spun another hundred tails about the friends I made and the cultural exchanges I experienced but I decided to let my pictures do most of the talking because, well  as you know by now I aint very eloquent and besides you probably have been reading this post for at least 15 minutes if you have got this far.  If you were down there and I didn't include you in this post, sorry for that, it's not because I don't  love you I probably didn't have pictures and this post this post is already a little too massive for most peoples liking.

If you have any inclination to run in the Copper Canyons Ultra marathon don't hesitate to make it a reality.  I am so thankful I for the friendships I have made  and the experiences I have had.  Although the race will not be the same without Caballo Blanco,  It will continue to go in his honor.  Preparations for next years race are already underway and the race will continue to grow and I expect next year's race to be the best one yet.  If you decide to come down and run I promise you that you will have a one of a kind experience and leave with friends and memories that will last a lifetime.

2013 Caballo Blanco- Copper Canyon Ultra Marathon
Sign Up





Bonus Links