Sunday, May 26, 2013

Racing (Sort of) at Round Up Ranch and Indian Creek in Sedalia, CO

This past weekend was another Rocky Mountain Endurance race. This one was the Indian Creek race.
All racers and their support crew (the families) were invited to camp at the Round Up Ranch, just a 1.8 sprint down the road from Indian Creek, where the race took place on Saturday.

The kids and I arrive early enough to be part of the potluck dinner that was taking place in the dining hall. It is such a cool building. (I had intended to take some photos the next day, but ended up not having the time.) The front door has a silhouette of a horse head cut out. There are deer heads and a taxidermied cougar handing on the wall. I wish I had taken the photos that night. I was waiting for natural light that would flood the room on Saturday.

The ranch has a long and interesting past. At one point the dining hall housed a bar where a good bit of gambling took place. One of the care-takers gave us a tour of the rooms which run down thin hallways and are atop a narrow, cramped set of stairs. Once upon a time there was a small brothel on the top floor. There are stories of ghost sightings and of a boy being locked in a room where upon the walls looks liked they had blood running down them. Once out, he reported that it looked like someone had tried to paint over the blood, but it refused to be covered. Others think they can see the shadow of a woman standing in the window. There is another locally famous story of a visiting man who won a lot of money. He took his gun out of his holster and shot into the ceiling in joy. The shot barely missed another man who was sleeping up stairs. He came down, demanded to know who shot the gun. Everyone pointed to the winner. The angry man shot him dead on the spot. We walked and road from the dinning hall back to the camping spot; the night was crystal clear, a deep, deep blue punctuated by bright stars. It was a perfect night to kick off the camping season. Mark and Martine joined us that evening.

I worked registration the next morning. My shift started at 6:00 a.m. Luckily, it is easy for me to wake up early, especially when the birds are chirping happily.

It was Kohlton's second race and we heard that the course was tough. He got a strong start.

Kohlton's age group went out with the marathon and half marathon group. They went up the road and into the Indian Creek wilderness. At some point during the race Kohlton took a wrong turn, ending up on the marathon course. Somehow he found out that he was going the wrong way. He turned around and went back to the second aid station. On the way there he witnessed a very bad crash and had a crash of his own.

Kolhton and a few others waited at the second aid station to leave, having to drop out of the race. The man that crashed had to be air lifted out. It took many hours to get that taken care of. The man had experienced serious trauma to his face. This week he had a six hour surgery to do some repair work and is not healing quickly.

In the meantime, Mark, Martine, Ellie and I eagerly waited at the finish line for Kohlton. He did not show when we expected him to. After doing a bit of searching around and talking to the first aid folks, we found out where Kohlton was. We had to drive out and around to Roxbourogh Park to wait for him to be brought out. Ellie opted to skip her race in favor of being there to pick up Kohlton. It was a long wait and they were very joyous to see each other again.

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