As I was running there I had left Peter behind at the aid station and I noticed runners retuning but I noticed they all seemed to be walking and I thought Why? I took note of the trail grade and realized it was a nice gradual downhill and I was running pretty good which meant I would too be walking back as they were. With that I picked up the pace to make up some more time I would lose getting back to Pipeline. I checked in at the Ski Lodge, grabbed my drop bag from the volunteers and resupplied my nutrition of gels and bars, although some of the bars had melted with the bag in the Sun so I just left them. I grabbed some more Salt tabs as I had not brought that many and wanted to make sure I didn't run out. Coke, some chips, and snickers, then the bathroom and it was time to head out. Once leaving I saw Peter standing around as he had checked in while I was eating and heading to the bathroom. I yelled at him as I walked by.. "Let's go dude, this ain't no rest home, We got work to do!" haha.. We both took off and started making our way back to Pipeline. Once back I had told Peter about the Popsicles that Baboo had mentioned before the race so when we got back to the aid station I yelled out, Hey is there Popsicles here? They all quickly pointed out a freezer off to the side and sure enough, a huge assortment of them! Peter and I quickly dove in and I grabbed two sets, root beer and banana. I had my water bottles refilled and said Let's Go!! Peter was like, dude, we just got here! haha, I said I know we gotta go! Come on, we can eat on the walk. Just then two gals started leaving with us at the same time, they were ahead of us since the start and we had now caught them. There was a nice climb leaving Pipeline and the volunteers told us that we had another 3-ish miles to the next aid, we were now about mile 21.
and would be till the last 2 miles. There was absolutely no shade or cover and the ground was now rocky, technical and soft dirt which kicked up a lot of dust. I would eventually get passed by a few 50 milers that were cranking along and it was good to see other people because I had seen no one for a while so when I got caught by them I ran with them for a short time and then it was nice to follow them down the winding snake like trail. Here is where I realized that I took that previous downhill single track way too hard and started to pay the price. The heat was getting to me and I was being conscious not to drink all my water and run out. I finally caught two previous 50'kers and passed them and realized I was about a mile from the last aid station! I also noticed another 50k'er hot on my heels and so I picked it up as to not get passed before the last aid station. Finally running into the last aid station I realized I was in survival mode and needed to cool off, get some coke, soup and just take it easy for a second. I did all this but was in the ahh shit mode when the gal behind me just blew through the aid station, dang, I just got chicked! hahaha.. I had not seen her all day so I knew she had been in the back of the pack and picked me off, no wonder she was pushing me at the end. Really wouldn't have matter even if I had blown through the last aid station because she was looking strong and there was a nice little climb leaving this last aid and I know she would have passed me before the end.