After the Peterson Ridge Rumble Race - Sisters, OR (35 miles) with Matt Score
A story I wrote on the Peterson Ridge Rumble experience:

"BY MILE 33"

In a quest for new adventures, I pulled out the current Trailrunner magazine and
scanned the list of races that would challenge me, travel through terrific scenery, take me
one stop beyond the marathon and provide me with that all important, valued race
t-shirt. A $35 check in the mail and I was on the registered list of suffering
wannabees for the Peterson Ridge Rumble, a 37-mile ultra marathon run on the trails
near Sisters, Oregon. Due to a generous supply of snow, the course was rerouted and
shortened to 35 miles. They did promise that suffering would not be in short supply
and as luck would have it, race t-shirts would also be in short supply.
I ended up working the day before the race, so Matt Score, my partner in
extreme adventure, and I would slide into Jamie’s home in nearby Bend after midnight.
Jamie, who also has diabetes but may possess more sense (he did not run), would
have his own adventures this day working backcountry ski patrol on Mt. Bachelor.
By 5 a.m. we were up and…well…we were at least awake.
The snowy, jagged peaks of Central Oregon were at their grandest as we sped toward escapades unknown. The Rumble is a low-key affair for those who like to run a really
long way and are not overly concerned about receiving a cotton prize at the end. These
are truly the diehards of the sport. If I did finish, I would receive a pair of screaming, loud socks. Very loud. But first I had some miles to cover.
Our friend and supplier of our secret carbo stash (Pear and Paley Energy Bars), Jeff
Warren, shook his head, wished us well, and shook his head again as we strolled to the
starting line. With little fanfare, we were on our way, and I would start my 34-mile “kick.”
A threatening evening and dismal forecast had us wondering what the conditions
would throw at us. Throughout the day, we would encounter snow, rain, hail and cloudy
conditions--but all-in-all it was a great day to be running (and running and running).
I was continually encouraged by the ever-present camaraderie of these incredible
individuals involved in their self imposed battles of physical ability, emotions, will power, conditions, mental challenges…not to mention the cute blond (Christel) who kept passing me. One extra battle I would be dealing with: my blood sugar was not coming down very quickly. Not the start that I had hoped for, but this disease has often presented extra me with obstacles and I chose to keep moving forward.
By mile 26, I had found my gear. I was still stalled in second gear, but I had the blood sugar where I wanted it and I continued to dig a little deeper. As the skies unleashed, we pulled into the only checkpoint that I had arranged for a supply drop. Considering myself lucky, I pulled a jacket on and continued ambling toward the finish. Cramps would kick me back to first gear and I encouraged Matt to run his own race. Christel would painfully pass me one last time.
Hours of striding through a beautiful forest allowed for some deep reflection.
I thought about how fortunate I am to have chosen a life of participation. To live
life as full, big, and fat while seeking those challenges that stretch me, pull me,
and transform me.
The last 300 yards were on a running track. Coming upon a pair of hurdles, which were set up in the outer lanes, I contemplated an impressive act, but realized that I had had a stellar day and did not want to end it sprawled out on the ground in lane 4, 100 yards from those prized socks.