We, Reid “Wombat” Marshall and Marina “Brown Eyed Girl” Santiago, met in New Jersey during independent Southbound hikes of the Appalachian Trail. From the first day, we were like two peas in a pod, and we spent the next 1,400 miles together. During our time together on the Appalachian Trail we shared our deep love of trail running with each other, and while it was difficult to run up and down rocky and root covered mountains while carrying 30 lb packs, we would run short sections of the trail almost every day.
As we closed in on the finish line at Mount Springer, it became very important to us to share our love of trail running and the challenge and beauty it can offer. Wanting to explore the National Parks of the American West, we planned a trail running road trip from Los Angeles to Denver, hitting as many national parks as we could in two weeks. While researching this trip, we discovered that while there are great hiking guides, there weren’t any useful trail running guides for any of the parks. The characteristics of a great running trail aren’t the same as the things that make an amazing hike, so we decided to create this series of guides for trail runners interested in exploring the parks of the world!
Hope you enjoy!