Today I ran the Lumpy Ridge Loop in Rocky Mountain National Park. I started counter-clockwise on the trail around 8:30am and passed quite a few people on the way up to Gem Lake (1.6 miles). I continued on for about 1.2 miles before turning left at a junction to go down to Balanced Rock. Visiting Balanced Rock was exactly 1 mile each way from this junction. Then I continued down to Cow Creek which I quickly passed and began to head west on the trail toward Bridal Veil Falls. I took a right at the first intersection to head 1.2 miles up to the falls, and then returned 1.2 miles to the junction and turned right. About 100 yards later, the trail crosses Cow Creek, and this is where I stopped for an 8 minute break to filter some water and refill my Nathan hydration vest.
I slowed down considerably as I went up toward the Cow Creek / Black Canyon trail junction, which was right around 11 miles into the run. I made quick work of the remaining 3.9 miles down the familiar Black Canyon trail towards the parking lot, to finish the 14.9 mile loop with 3,644 ft elevation gain. My moving time was about 3:06, and the total elapsed time was about 3:19. I think I could probably break 3 hours if I were to push myself a bit harder, but I wanted to take it easy today. Here’s a picture of the route taken with elevation gain.