Steamboat Springs, CO
|Avg Temps f.
|Gain/Loss in ft
13.2 (two times with minimal aid between)
Summary: A challenging race on the trails outside of Steamboat Springs, CO, with both a Tortoise (earlier start, no prize money, pacers allowed) and a Hare (later start, prize money, more rules) division, this race usually draws a deep, competitive field because of the large amount of prize money offered in the Hare division. The race includes both loops and out and backs, mainly on singletrack or double track dirt roads, and ranges from about 6,800-10,600 feet, with the biggest challenge being the huge swing in temperature from the warm sun in the daytime (70s) to the cold nights (<10). The race begins on a Friday and a 50 mile race is run on Saturday. Oh, and in order for your race time to officially stop, you have to hug a DH (designated hugger) after you cross the finish line!
Lessons Learned from Race Reports
- Weather is very unpredictable, and varies greatly between day time and night time, and the highest and lowest altitude.
- #1 reason people quit is because they are cold at night. Previous years have seen 70s in the daytime and single digits (8 degrees in 2015) at night at Dry Lake aid station. Have layers in your kit and have them in a drop bag or with crew, including puffies, long pants, warm gloves, and hats.
- Make sure crew bring warm layers and sleeping bags to the aid stations, especially Dry Lake, where runners will be going through at night.
- It’s difficult for runners and crew to recognize each other at night at the aid stations because everyone is bundled up, at least the crew will be if they bring sleeping bags.
- You’ll likely see bear and moose out on the course
- Know the rules if you’re a tortoise vs. a hare
- Be sure crew know the rules and the shuttles to get to/from aid stations
- Many people go out way too hard on that first climb and it takes them a lot of time to recover from it because of it
- Descent down to Fish Creek Falls is fairly technical, with rocks, roots, and slick spots
- Temperature drops really fast at sunset, so be prepared in terms of timing more clothes/dry clothes with aid stations and drop bags/crew
- Have a good headlamp – it’s likely you’ll be going through the entire night, so it needs to last 12 hours, or have a spare battery.
- Long, quad-busting downhills just as hard as the long uphills
- Use sunscreen, hat and sunglasses! High altitude, exposed sections, and lots of sun during the daytime. This goes for crew too!
- Course changed in 2018 to include more single track and less road, which means the course is harder in a sense with more trail and it will feature more climbing, but it is also shorter and closer to the 100 mile distance.
Total gain/loss: 20,191/20,191
Ft/mile gain: ~200 (course slightly longer than 100)
Total climbs: 4 major – 2x3500ft, 1x3000ft, 1x1500ft
Longest climb: 15 miles and 3500ft from ~65-80
Steepest climb: 3500ft in 4.8 miles from the Start
Total aid stations: 15, not including Start/Finish
Furthest distance apart: 13.2 (two times with minimal aid between)
Locations: miles 4.4, 10.8, 16.9, 23, 31.6, minimal aid between, 44.7, 50.9, minimal aid between, 64.1, 70.3, minimal aid between, 80.3, 88.9, 95.3
What’s available: At least Tailwind and water, Honey Stinger waffles and chews, a cola and a non-cola beverage, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, turkey and cheese wraps or sandwiches, potato chips, cookies, some fruit and carrots. Hot food at night like soup, pancakes, beans and maybe eggs, bacon and sausage and breakfast burritos. No gel packets given out because of the high probability of a litter problem.
Access Locations: Start/Finish and miles 16.9, 44.7, 50.9, 64.1, 70.3 (miles 44.7 and 70.3 are the same, as are miles 50.9 and 64.1). Crew can also take the gondola up from the start (limited tickets available) and see runners at the top of Mount Werner, 4 miles in.
Crew instructions/directions: See Runner’s Manual, starting on page 4; mainly shuttles and no crew parking allowed.
Tortoises: Pacers allowed starting from mile 50.9 (Olympian Hall); runners age 60 and over allowed pacers for entire race. Family/friends allowed to ride the gondola up/hike up final four miles and accompany runners the final 4 miles.
Western States qualifier
No UTMB points