Last year, The North Face Endurance Challenge, presented by GORE-TEX added a couple locations, now making it a six stops series and one of the locations is in Utah. I was able to participate in it last year with some friends. We ran the Marathon Relay and it was a great time. The atmosphere and energy at the race was high and was definitely one of the more enjoyable trail events that I have been to. This year the Utah race will take place on September 26 - 27 at the Park City Mountain Resort.
Back in 2006, during ultrarunner Dean Karnazes’ quest to run 50 marathons, in 50 states, in 50 consecutive days, otherwise known as The North Face Endurance 50, the idea of the Endurance Challenge Series was born. Launched in 2007, The North Face Endurance Challenge Series committed to pushing runners to their personal limits of endurance, while promoting the sport of ultra-trail running.
In its first three years, the Series hosted single-day trail running events offering four race distances: 10K, Half-Marathon, 50K and 50 Mile. The menu of distances was designed to expose newcomers to the world of ultra-trail racing, while simultaneously providing a platform for elite ultra-marathon distance runners to push their limits on the trail.
As the Series grew and became more popular, the Series introduced a second day of racing to the 2010 schedule in an effort to accommodate the extensive waiting lists. Race capacity doubled allowing more runners to take on the challenge. In addition, the Endurance Challenge introduced four new distances to the Series offering: Marathon, Marathon Relay, 5K and the 1K kids race.
Located 30 miles outside of Salt Lake City, Park City Mountain Resort is a great venue to hold this challenge. Also this location has the highest elevation starting line in all the series. Each event will be held over two days, with the GORE-TEX 50 Mile, 50K, Marathon, Marathon Relay and Kid’s 1K race held on Saturday, and the Half Marathon, 10K, 5K races and Kid’s 1K race held on Sunday.
Runners can begin preparing for their race distance with free Mountain Athletics training programs at www.thenorthface.com/mountainathletics. Also, The North Face has been gracious enough to offer Open Air Life readers a discount off their entrance of 15% to the Park City Race. All you need to do is enter the code D30JBUT15 (all caps) at checkout to get your discount.
This year I have aim my sights a little higher and have signed up for the Marathon distance. Lucky for me my brother has also decided to join me for the run. I plan on it be another great event. I invite you to train with our team as we prepare to run the Marathon. You can follow me on Strava or join the Strava The North Face Endurance Challenge - Utah club.
For more information on The North Face Endurance Challenge visit http://www.thenorthface.com/en_US/endurance-challenge
You can also check out the video below and see if you can spot me. This was the promo video that was shoot last year to promote the event. It was a great day running with Dean and spending the day with other North Face athletes.