Fast & beautiful. (about: 2000)|
A Runner from Utah, USA (12/7/00)
This was my first marathon, run with friends from the RW forums.
Prior to the taper I had run the last 21 miles of the course as my last LSD to get a feel for it. I was hoping for as beautiful a day come race day as it was on Labor Day weekend.
Unfortunatly, this was not to be. Cold when I arrived at the park to catch the bus to the starting line. It starts at an elk preserve called Hardware Ranch up Blacksmith Fork Canyon near Logan, Utah. (abt. 5600' elev. dropping to 4500') We began to see snow falling as we rode the bus to the starting line. It would continue to snow lightly for most of the race. For me, that was 18-20 miles, for the man who crossed the finish line first? 26.2.
The first 13-15 miles are in the canyon and no one is allowed up until the last runner leaves the canyon. And most of the first 18 are downhill, all the uphill sections are in the last 8 miles. However, they are not too bad.
The course winds thru 4 or 5 small towns before finishing at Merlin Olsen Park in Logan. The only reason I rate spectators a 3 is that because of the weather, there weren't very many. But those that braved the elements with us were VERY enthusiastic. More in the last mile. All were very supportive.
Water stations were well manned as were first aid stations. This race had just under 2000 registered runners this year. (2nd year) Only about 1200 finished. I believe a lot of people stayed at home that would have done it because of the weather.
Normally, September in Utah is perfect running weather. Not too hot, not too cold.
I would have liked to see larger bags for clothing. Traffic was handled well I thought, especially since organizers had to coordinate & work with multiple law enforcement agencies.
Fairly fast race. The men's overall winner finished in 2:36, which given the conditions was about 30 minutes off his PR, from what I understand.
Every mile there was 1 porta potty. I thought that they could have had 2 every mile and been in even better shape. Entry fees are reasonable.
I know of people who came from as far away as New Hampshire & Jacksonville, FL to do this.