Thursday, July 15, 2010

Another Fantasy Run: Hardrock 100

A few weeks ago I posted about the Western States 100, a race I would love to run--someday.  Another great trail race is the Hardrock 100, run last weekend, July 9-11.  Hardrock, started in 1992, is not as old as Western States, but looks to be much tougher.

For comparison, WS has a cutoff of 30 hours.  The winner this year set a new course of 15:07.  Hardrock's cutoff is 48 hours; the winner this year ran it in 27:18.  The elevation range of the WS course goes from 6200 to 8750 feet, with total climbing of 15540 feet, descending 22970 feet.  Hardrock boasts 33992 feet of climbing and the same descent.  Average elevation is 11000 feet.  Runners cross 13 passes of 12000 plus feet, as well as summiting Handies Peak, 14048 feet.  I would never say WS looks easy, but with the additional climbing, elevation changes, and navigation (Hardrock says to brush up on your orienteering skills--the trail's not always clear. . . .), Hardrock definitely sounds like a tougher challenge.
These runners have a long day-and night-and day-and night ahead of them!

I wish Hardrock posted the ages and home states of the runners.  I know some from Texas and other relatively flat, low altitude place states run there; Glenn Mackie from NTTR finished in 32:36.  How do those people train?  Climbing stairs in an office building while wearing a surgical mask?  As much as I'd love to run this--someday--at this point it's hard to conceive.  But with views like this, how could I not want to be there:

I'm not ready to run 100 miles through the Rocky Mountains, but looking at these pictures sure does make me want to pay them a visit.  Excuse me while I start planning a trip to Colorado. . . .

(The pictures are from Blake Wood's online gallery.)

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