|Holly- toughest lady I know|
|Me the night before the race|
Despite the disappointment of not getting to finish I had many things to be thankful for. My friends of course. I loved being with them all weekend. We laughed a lot, worked through some tough miles and made memories that we will treasure forever. The people of Texas were great, so welcoming. The runners in the race, the RD's, the finish line volunteers, they all were very supportive. It's a great community.
As far as the race- First off the course is awesome. I loved it and I miss it already! I can't wait to go back! I'm a cowgirl at heart and I love cowboy country! It is rugged, rough, and beautiful. The terrain is dry, sharp, various sized loose rocks. Parts of the course are run-able and parts are steep climbs and descents. On top of the climbs you can see breathtaking landscape for miles. The course had many huge Sotel patches. They were tall, grand and in full bloom. These plants had leaves with little teeth that cut you up. There was no way to avoid them, you just had to barrel through.
|Close up picture of a Sotel. These plants were taller than us.|
Camping at the start finish line is really easy. It only cost 10 bucks per car for the whole weekend. There was a nice wide open field to put up your tent.
|My tent is the big one with awesome views of Hill country|
|Pre-race directions the night before|
The race is described perfectly when it says on the website "We avoid anything flat to take you on all that is rugged and nasty". The race director says everyone reads the website but does not believe the course is as tough as they describe. Believe it. In Ultrarunning Magazine Cactus Rose is rated tougher than Sawtooth. My girlfriend Holly has ran Sawtooth and she agrees with that statement. It is a beast, but it is not impossible. It kicked my butt but I will miss it every day until I get to go back. I will start this race again, and next time I will make it to that finish line.