I figure it might make sense to provide some more detailed info on the actual event and how it really works. 200 miles seems like a lot but it’s not like the same as when you think of someone running a marathon, it’s a quite different beast. First 200 is catchy so don’t let that fool you, the course in miles is actually 205 something. Most ultras aren’t really exact in their mileage so long as it’s close.
Another thing to note, this particular event is unique in that it’s a point to point course. This means you start at one location and end at totally different place. There is no repeating a 10 mile loop 20 times or even a 50 mile loop 4 times. Here’s the course in Google Earth. You basically start near Mt. St. Helens go around it and then over to Mt. Adams and then north for a bit. It doesn’t look that far until you zoom out and see it relative to other places on the map. It starts to feel a bit more daunting…let’s just say I’ll stay zoomed in when I’m looking at the course.
There’s roughly 50,000 feet of climbing over the 205 mile course. Hmm that seems like a lot considering Mt. Everest is roughly 29,000 feet so at least it’s a not full 2 climbs. Okay, maybe this wasn’t such a great idea to write down all these details because now I’m getting worried. I looked up my 100 miler I did back in 2015 and it was only 15K feet of climbing and it felt like A LOT. I’ll just chalk that up to being at 10,000 feet or higher for that entire ultra. This one is nice and near sea-level comparatively.
Now, the last thing is the clock. We’re talking a grandfather clock here as everything is measured in days and hours not minutes and seconds. Everyone has 105 hours to finish. That’s 4 days and 9 hours. The clock is continually running even though as a participant you may not be. Because this is a multi-day event, there are sleep stations. I’ll be taking advantage of them over the course of the event. My rough estimate is to complete 80ish miles then sleep for a few hours before doing it again until I finish. The cutoff time is very lenient so a fast hike for most of the miles should get you to the finish line. The hard part is the constant moving for that many consecutive hours. With Thanksgiving holiday just around the corner, let’s break it down relative to that. Plus if you’re still reading this entry, you’re a TRUE HERO. Most folks get Thursday/Friday off for Thanksgiving. Let’s say you leave work at 5pm on Wednesday and I started my trek at the same. You’d be sound asleep on Sunday night heading into the fresh Monday work week before the cutoff time was reached officially. The cutoff time in that scenario would be 2am Monday morning. So basically, I’d be constantly counting down miles over the ENTIRE Thanksgiving holiday weekend.
Thanks for reading and let me just end with some activity info… 8 more days until I give the calf a first run and get moving towards real training. I did my usual quick swim this morning and will continue to ride the trainer daily to keep from going total bonkers.