I will write a full and thorough race report but meantime the short version is: I finished.
This was my toughest one yet, despite being the fittest I have been. I was conservative the first day and was confident I could run home strong in under 40hrs (my goal) the last climb in the night (Engineer's Pass) and early the next morning I suffered terribly from the altitude. My vision went all blurry then started to funnel down on me and I was all light headed and wobbly. At first I thought this was just fatigue but it got worse the higher I went and then my lips got all tingly. I realised I was hypoxic and descended. I sat and faced the DNF for nearly an hour before trying again and taking it really slow. I made it over American-Grouse and then over Handies so just plugged away until I felt good again by late afternoon.
Time became irrelevant except for the cut-offs which I knew I could beat. I don't know what else I can do for this run. I have trained harder than ever, spent 3 weeks acclimating and I know the course now. There is no way of predicting the effects of altitude and I suffered more in the lead up this year.
But a Hardrock finish is a finish, and I will take that anyday, regardless of time.
3 from 3.