Apr 18, 2012

Distance today = 51.28 km; Total distance = 5213.84 km; Location = Alamosa (15 km east of) – 37 28.469′ N, 105 42.139′ W; Start time = 0818, Finish time = 1558


When there’s a strong headwind blowing, it’s always better to be running than cycling. That’s how I felt this afternoon. The headwind, although a touch annoying, was not a major problem – it certainly would have been on a bike.

The day was otherwise quite pleasant. It was mostly flat, with all my running being between 2,305 and 2,465 metres in elevation. All around me, however, were views of snow-capped mountains. I have actually had to run west for half a day in order to navigate around one of these insurmountable mountain ranges. I’ll be running on this “American Tibet” plateau for the next two or three days. I then have to go over a pass that is not too far below 3,000 metres in altitude.

Half way through the day I passed through Fort Garland. The fort was established in 1852 as a base for the US Army to protect settlers in the region. The adobe buildings are still standing, exactly as they were 150 years ago. I also found out that Kit Carson was a Lt. Colonel in the army, and was in charge of this fort for a period. I still insist that he wouldn’t have stood a chance on a bike against the great Kit Rumsey.

To finish, I’d like to explain how I am operating the tracker at the moment. In order to send regular tracker position updates during the day, I need to have T-mobile reception. But I rarely have such reception in these more remote regions.

At first, I thought this meant no updates at all. However, I’ve discovered that, if I can find a wireless internet source (and I generally can in the towns), then I can set my phone to access this source – this allows me to send and receive data.

The only issue is that it sends out my position as being where the wireless network is located. If I haven’t actually finished my day at that place (sometimes, like today, I finish out of town and am transported to and from this spot by the support crew), then my tracker position is not quite correct. Tonight is is showing me in the town of Alamosa, whereas my official run position is about 15 km to the east.

However, I feel it is better to give people a rough idea of where I am at that moment, than to have the tracker many days out-of-date (and, therefore, even more inaccurate). Whenever the tracker position is not strictly correct, I will acknowledge this fact on the blog.