Harry and I have run Backbone together before and decided to attempt the first Mixed Gender team time that we are aware of. We chose self-supported, and dropped water/food the day before at Stunt Road, Kanan and Mishe Mokwa parking lots. This allowed us to run most of the time with just 1-1.5L of water. We were dropped off at Will Rogers starting at 6:02AM Saturday February 18th morning. Could not have asked for better weather, partly cloudy, stopping for water at Musch campground - and besides a few falls during the Hondo climb, an easy morning up to Stunt road. We refilled food/water from our stash at Stunt and continued down to the start of the Bulldog climb. We both filled 2L of water from the restroom. I started to feel a bit heavy from the extra weight and we opted for speed walking up Bulldog. At Corral we stopped to eat our P&J tortillas continuing to Kanan. This stretch always feels hard, even though it was not more than 60-65 degrees, the lack of canopy and rolling hills makes it daunting. We were both out of water by the time we got to Kanan and starting to fall behind our goal time. We refilled from our stash and carried on. At Encinal, we filled water at the public spigot by the firehouse. The sun starting to set and temperatures started to cool off which gave us a second wind and we pushed hard through Mishe Mokwa making up 30 minutes of time. Watching the sunset before Mishe was 100% a highlight of this run. At Mishe we changed into warmer gear and headlamps. The dark ascent of Sandstone went slow, but we bombed down to Danielson’s ranch where it definitely felt below freezing. The last little climb to Ray Miller was okay and we kept decent speed, definitely slowed down by the dark to the end but still super happy finishing at 9:44PM.
Overall we are stoked with our time as we were able to still enjoy the route and day, keeping the full pushes to the stretches between Will Rogers to Stunt, Encinal to Mishe Mokwa and Sandstone to Danielson’s. Stashing water was a nice comfort to reduce the weight we had to carry throughout. Harry pushing the uphills and me pushing the downhills was a great rhythm. In some way I think taking on something like this with another person the entire way can be more intimidating than solo, but I am very grateful for the shared mindset and ethos that let's Harry and I to do this together super easily. Cannot wait for another round, unsupported soon!