Friday, 7 February 2014

Taking on the Remarkables in search of Lake Alta

To top off this weeks training I decided to run up the mountain range I look at every morning and night out my window.. The Remarkables, in search of Lake Alta. People had told me it was a beautiful 'drive' up there.. But of course I wanted to run it :-)

Just one of many stunning views on the climb..
All up, then all down! 
I have been wanting to do it for a while now but just always gone for an easier option as it was going to be about 14km of straight up hill with a gain of 5000ft over the distance. After filling my Nathan race vest with all the fuel I wanted and got my my kit ready, I set off at an nice easy pace knowing what was coming up 5km down the road when I start to climb. Once I started the climb instantly I found out way people had said to me not to run it… It was just crazy, but since when have I ever listened! I started to find a little rhythm and just worked to close down them kms 1 by 1.. The views were just spectacular!! People love the look of the Remarkables from Queenstown, but they should see it from up there too. With a couple of cars passing my on the way up and kindly giving me some encouragement I pushed on after taking a few pictures here and there. After ascending for nearly 1:42 I came to the Remarkables Ski Resort signs, as much as I wanted to call it a day here and start heading down I continued up to Lake Alta a few more kms upwards (of course!) I'm really glad I did, from the ski resort you went onto a single file technical trail on the final climb up to Lake Alta. The weather was scorching by this time topping over 20 degrees, but I was determined to reach the glacier waters of Lake Alta. On nearing the lake it felt very 'Alpine' with that typical alpine look all around and little water streams running from the mountains. Even some snow still around in the hight of summer here!  It was a very beautiful area and I was really happy to reach the Lake, the waters felt amazingly cooling after all the climbing I had done over the last 14kms..
Lake Alta.. 

After a refuel session and a few pictures i started on my descent knowing I was only half way in my adventure at Lake Alta.. As every one know descending is so much easier than climbing!! Apart from the hammering on the legs the descent felt like it was going a lot faster than the climbing was.. Again just as stunning on the descent down, with clear blue skies and miles of mountains to be seen it was a great run all around.. On returning back down and nearing town I decided to take a little paddle in the Lake Wakatipu to ease the sore legs from all the descending down..
Really glad I did it and again a good challenging 40km run in the legs for the Tarawera Ultra 100km trail race I have coming up in just under 5 weeks. Fingers crossed I can stay injury free and continue to work hard to run a decent race in Rotorua followed by TNF Aus 100km I have 8 weeks later in the Blue Mountains just outside Sydney, Australia..


Thanks to everyone for taking time to read my blog, and a huge thanks to 'Nathan NZ' For their support and world class hydration packs and gear…
Cheers guys!
Paul
Movescount readings of the climb and descent!

Map of the route up to Lake Alta.. 



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