I have however kept up my 40 mile running weeks which I have really enjoyed - I'm up to about 7 or 8 weeks in a row now with 40 miles and it has become really fun to do. I have tried to vary distances and how often I run each week. Some weeks I did back to back to back 2 hour runs. One week I ran a 20 miler and only 2 other times. Each week I have done a loop of the Falcon Trail and seen my time get quicker as my fitness improves. I have also tried to get up Mt Herman each week which has helped add up vertical gain.
I finished the year with over 1500 miles and just over 190,000' of elevation gain. Both of these are noticeably different than 2012 numbers. I expect to improve on those in 2014 and are considering increasing my weekly mileage up to 45, maybe even 50 miles. It all depends on my legs, feet, back etc.
I had a weekend where I could get 2 good last long runs in this past weekend - so on Saturday I did my fastest lap of Falcon Trail in recent memory (ie before Pikes Peak Marathon) with a 1:56. Then on Sunday I wanted to add onto that by exploring Stanley Canyon - which is a trail that comes off Falcon Trail, halfway into the 13 mile loop.
What a fun experience, it had snowed the night before up to an inch in places on the trail which makes it really pretty. The trail was steep and very rocky for the first mile. I really had no idea where to go at times and ended up following the rugged canyon / creek bed up. This lead to a few adventurous moments when I realised I was on frozen waterfalls, covered in snow and with little to no traction - resulted in some slipping and sliding.
Eventually the trail levelled out and lead to Stanley Canyon Reservoir which I didn't even know existed. I thought about going for a slip and slide on it but thought a wiser choice would be to not tempt fate. Past that I continued on a rolling trail that lead me who knows where - but I ended up about 4 miles from the trailhead. Of course by this time I was out of food (didn't have much to begin with) and water - but I was able later to refill in the creek where it wasn't frozen over.
The journey down was slow and I was tired, the highlight being a frozen waterfall that I slid down on my butt cause I couldn't figure out an easier way of doing it. 21 miles once I finally finished, almost 5 hours and 3300 something feet gained.
I'll look to do the trip again but likely wait to the snow and ice has gone - for obvious reasons. Here are some pictures from going up and down through Stanley Canyon - as well as on the trails above it.