The descent leading to the third climb was really fun technical running and the fog was really heavy making for an intense sensation of isolation and solitude. I turned on some music to put the mountain lion fears on the back burner and alternated between power hiking and shuffling up the steep third climb. Near the top I saw a coyote disappear into the mist beside the trail.
At one of the aid stations the volunteers remarked, "You're slamming those shots like a Russian sailor!". By this point in the day the 50K runners were sharing the course and I was happy to have people to chase and exchange "good-jobs" with for motivation. I came in at the end of the third lap with an 11 minute lead, nearly identical splits to lap 2, switched over to my "drop the hammer" playlist and rushed out of the aid station so quickly I forgot to drink any Coke. About a quarter of a mile down the trail I came to a screeching halt...ponies in the trail!