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Elk-King’s Mtn Traverse 15-Miler Course
Lamenting the fact that trail races are filling up faster than ever? Pacific Northwest trail runners can rejoice at a slew of stunning new options for this year. With races ranging from 10K to 100-mile, the newly minted NW Mountain Trail Series—put on by NSPiRE Racing—is dishing up competition on some of the most picturesque trails in Washington and Oregon.
For 2013, the NW Mountain Trail Series boasts two longtime favorite ultras—the Mt. Hood 50-Miler in July and the Volcanic 50K in September—as well as four new events on fresh courses.
“We’ve scouted lots of trails to find routes that will challenge and reward the racers,” says co-race director Todd Janssen.
One unique perk of the series is that all races will feature live online results at NSPiRElive.com and through the free NSPiRElive mobile app. Runners can even opt to have their live results automatically shared with friends or family via email, text or social media.
Want to give your lungs and legs a hearty workout? Try the Smith Rock Ascent, a 15-mile race that will sweep you above the dramatic, red-rock cliffs at this longtime climbers’ destination. With over 3000 feet vertical gain, the course proffers panoramic views of central Oregon and the Three Sisters.
For a taste of Oregon’s section of the scenic Pacific Crest Trail, run the Mt. Hood 50, a heavily shaded, highly runnable 50-mile course. A longtime Oregon favorite, this one fills up fast.
The Dog Mountain 10K serves up an astounding 3000 feet of vertical gain on pure singletrack. Summiting Dog Mountain near the Washington-Oregon border, runners will enjoy uninterrupted views of the lush Columbia River Gorge.
Run the only race in the U.S. to circumnavigate a volcano—rugged Volcanic 50 (distance, according to the website, is “50K+”) runs the technical singletrack Loowit Trail around Mt. St. Helens, taking runners over lava and pumice fields, through rivers and dense forests and through the blast zone. Like the Mt. Hood 50, this is an established classic that sells out fast.
Co-race director Trevor Hostetler calls the new Mountain Lakes 100 the “highlight of the series.” With challenging, technical trails, the Mountain Lakes 100 invites runners along large stretches of the Pacific Crest Trail and more than 25 lakes.
Lastly, the Elk-King’s Mtn Traverse takes runners up and over two mountains in the coast range—Elk and King’s—for 5800 feet of vertical gain in 15 miles. Featuring steep, extremely technical singletrack, the Traverse is predicted to take twice as long as a “normal” 15-miler.
For more information, visit http://www.mountaintrailseries.com.