Category Archives: Uncategorized

Don’t be Lonely – Last Day to Sign up

“1” – That is definitely the “Loneliest Number you will ever know”; but not as lonely as you will be when all your friends are running the Coyote Cohorts Backbone Trail Ultra on March 15 and you are NOT!  Today is the last day to sign up for this running party, journey, vision quest, walk in the woods (well chaparral is as close as we get here in Southern California), adventure crawl and ambulation.

Your destiny is as easy as a click here:


Are you Still Alive?

“10” – a familiar number…; you see it every day.. fingers or toes, (except for one of my running buddies who has seemed to merge a few toes together); base 10, the numbering system we use and live by every day.. a coincidence… think not..; Ten, Pearl Jam’s first album.. or the number of times you stubbed your toe in the last 10 miles of your last adventure run….

BUT MORE IMPORTANTLY……10 is the number of days you have left to sign up for the Coyote Cohorts Backbone Ultra Run.  So get on over to Ultrasignup and feel like you are STILL ALIVE ….    See you on the trail… woop woop..


Still Searching for the Yeti?

There are more slots open for you to join the search for the Yeti on the Backbone Trail.  There were reports of some runners spotting the Yeti last year, or were they hallucinating in the final miles?  Get a shot of the Yeti or bring a convincing story to the finish line and win a lifetime’s supply of Chutzpah and Peeps.

Oh yeah, and prices go up on January 1st. Whatcha’ waiting for?

Yeti Runs

Feeling unloved?

We all use the trails and they need our love too…. H’ard Cohen is organizing a special trail runners trail work day with the Santa Monica Mountains Trails Council (SMMTC) on Saturday December 7th. We will meet at Wendy Trailhead and run to the trail work site at the junction of the Tri Peaks Trail and the Backbone Trail. This is not an easy trail but great training and a little rock hopping. We will meet Trail Crew leaders with food, water, and tools then proceed to work on the Chamberlain Trail all the way down to Danielson Ranch. From there we can hitch a ride back or run back to the trailhead.

There are different options for running routes and I will suggest some as we get a list of runners.
This is a great chance to be with your running friends and support the trail system.

We need a FIRM commitment from all the participants to ensure we can support the runners with Trail Crew Leaders, tools and rides. I think we could all use the extra miles and this will be a great day of training and giving back to the trail running community.  Details can be found here.

If you can’t make this trail work day then visit the SMMTC website and see their schedule here.
hc-trail work1 4-2013

Look forward to seeing you out there pitching in on the trails.

Registration is (Finally) Open

Med Res_Roch runderwear

Photo of Icky Ocky in his handerpants by Jayme Burtis

At last, your latest raison d’etre (don’t you love it when we speak French?) – registration for the 2014 Coyote Cohorts Backbone Trail Ultra is now open on Ultra Signup. Let the games begin!

You can sign up here as a player until Feb. 15th, or as a volunteer until March 8th. We’ve capped entrants at 175, but will maintain a wait list in the event we hit capacity on those of questionable-enough sanity to sign up for this 2nd traverse of the Backbone (we think it likely, but we don’t want to be too full of ourselves).

A few items of note:

  • There are 2 start groups this year, as opposed to the three in last years games. Aid station cutoff times and other relevant details have been updated on our website.
  • Pre-requisites are completion of a 50 mile event of comparable difficulty and one day’s worth (minimum) of trail maintenance prior to the coin toss.
  • We’ve added volunteer registration to Ultra Signup, so’s you can ensure you get your free shirt of choice for the hours of suffering you will endure with no other personal gain (although if you volunteer after Feb 15th we can’t 100% guarantee availability of shirts.) After you are formally conscripted, one of our volunteer coordinators will contact you to, well, coordinate your volunteer post. They’re pretty good at that coordinating thing.
  • Training runs: there will be 4 official ones. We don’t know exactly when yet. But “Like” us on our Facebook page or keep us off your e-mail Spam list and we’ll let you know relevant beta as soon as we have it.
  • Nicknames: returning players will be assigned their previous nom de’ guerre; new recruits will have little say whatsoever in what nickname will be given them.  Hey, we gotta’ have our fun somehow and at someone else’s expense.
  • Apparel: while you won’t have a choice as to the color of your shirt, you will be able to choose between the far more important option of long-sleeved versus short-sleeved Patagonia technical shirts. They’ll be great, trust us, and the colors will set off your complexion perfectly.

Oh, and we’re sorry for the delay in the registration go-live. From the usual mashups with various park service authorities, a brilliant last-minute assist from the national government, and the acquisition of permissions from certain celebrity land owners and all, we erred on the side of caution.

OK, what are you waiting for? Sign up already. Here.

Toodles! And happy trails!

The Next Time You Run the Backbone…

…maybe send a little love upwards to one who helped create the trails that keep us on the right side of sanity. Linda Palmer died this past June 22 of cancer at the age of 80, having racked up a lifetime exemption from any trail work entrance requirements as well as some serious bonus minutes.

From our friend and hers, H’ard Cohen, who attended the Santa Monica Mountains Trails Council memorial service for her this past weekend, “Linda was a significant force in establishing the trail systems we enjoy today in these local mountains.  Her ability to influence private land owners, developers, state and federal organizations on land use was subtle but effective.  She brought these decision makers out on the trails so they could experience the natural resource and appreciate the value it would bring to future generations.  I worked with Linda on the trails with McCloud in hand and on the SMMTC board for a number of years, and her stewardship of leading conservation efforts in the Santa Monica Mountains will truly be missed.”

You can read more about Linda’s life and work here. Happy trails, scout!

Fall Rainbow_Chris Scott_filter

Photo by Chris Scott

For this hour I ordain myself loos’d of limits and imaginary lines, going where I  list, my own master total and absolute – Whitman

Map Porn Game 2 and Bizarre Lizard Sex

OK, let’s see what THIS blog post title does to our keyword search metrics.

SAMO annotated_square thumbnailWith a nod towards building even greater camaraderie betwixt participants,  Game 2 of the Coyote Backbone Trail Ultra will feature just 2 starting groups. We’ve updated our playground maps and aid station beta accordingly. Check out our latest cartographic creations on our map page here, and aid station details for you and your long-suffering support crews here.

And, perhaps inspired by the extraordinary bump in, umm, exposure Ringneck Snakegenerated by Miley Cyrus’ coming-of-age performance, the National Parks service has spiced up their event marketing with their announcement of their October 6th Live Reptile and Amphibian show. Among the lecture topics: “From Social to Indifferent: Insights into the Bizarre Sex Lives of Southern California Lizards”. It’s probably safe to take the kids, though, so might be kind of a cool event for future Backboners. It’s being held at the Santa Monica Mountains Visitor Center this Saturday from 10am to 3pm, more details on the flyer here. Possible bonus minutes for the first to identify this snake, which can be found throughout the playground.