Ben and Scott, veteran PHX trail runners, will be organizing bi-monthly training runs with a focus on training for the XTERRA Arizona trail race series (http://www.aztrailrace.com/). Runs will highlight the classic trailheads and loops in the Phoenix area, especially at the South Mtn. and PHX Mtns Preserves. Most will occur on weekday evenings, right before sundown. One of us will set a brisk but constrained training pace while the other will stay behind the group for safety.
On Tuesday we will try a different but well-known trailhead - Pima Canyon at South Mountain. Meet in the main parking lot at the end of Pima Canyon Road by 5:00 - we will leave right on time. As the days get longer, we will start moving times later to accommodate people just leaving work. It's recommended that you bring a headlamp in case we are out longer than anticipated.
We will run in a loop route on the following trail segments: up the Pima Canyon dirt road, up the National Trail to the Mormon Trail junction, north and then east on the Mormon Loop Trail, up and across the challenging Ridgeline Trail, and then back to the trailhead on the dirt road. The total mileage of the route is just over 6 miles; if we have an energetic and motivated group, we could possibly extend the route on the Marcos de Niza or Pima West trails. Difficulty: Intermediate
Make sure to bring water with you. This is an informal unsupported event and we will only bring a little emergency water on the trail. Finally, if you wish to run ahead of the pace setter, feel free, but please study the map and understand the route beforehand.