Wednesday, March 24, 2010


The town of Leadville is a mining town. The mines are no longer open and operational but once a mining town always a mining town. The Leadville trail 100 is closely linked to this mining history. The turnaround point on the course is at the old Columbine Mine site which is at 12,500ft elevation. All mining towns have interesting history, full of colorful characters and Leadville is no exception. It takes a hearty breed to sustain oneself in that climate and to race in that climate requires going deep into ones own mine shaft of motivation and strength.

Mine in Leadville

All of us have a mine deep inside. The place where we go for motivation and strength in all areas of our lives. I like to picture my mine as having several different shafts for mining different areas of life. About four years ago, the vein that I was mining for racing dried up. I went deep and came up empty. All miners know that the source can dry up at some point and at that point in my life the iron vein was dry.  Since then, I have been building a new shaft and reinforcing it. I have taken a few nuggets out now and then but generally I have been letting the deposits grow. 

Mine Shaft

Mine shafts can be deep, dark, lonely places. My training is chipping a tunnel into the depths of the mine in hopes that it will be easy to get there on race day. Come August 14th when I dig deep I hope that my pick hits the motherlode. If not, as any prospector or kid can tell you, fools gold is just as sparkly!

Columbine Mine -half way point

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