You may find this surprising, but according to Run100s.com (my go-to reference for all things 100 miles) there are about 150 races in North America that are 100 miles in length. This is up about 50% from when I first started researching the distance 4 years ago. Heck, three of the races that I’ve done didn’t even exist back then. Overall, the total number has been relatively consistent for a while as new races replace older ones that are disappearing. While the popularity of ultras and 100-milers in particular looks to have plateaued somewhat over the past couple years, I’ll still be spoiled for choices on races to run for the foreseeable future. Below is my current wish list of races that I would like to run. Who knows if or when I’ll be able to run them. I’ve added some comments as to why I’ve included it on my list. I’ve excluded Umstead and Old Dominion, which I’m planning on doing in 2017.
- Western States, CA. The original and iconic 100-miler is on everyone’s wish list. Given the popularity, it’ll probably be quite a while before I have the opportunity to run it.
- Vermont, VT. One of the original six hundred mile races. There’s a concurrent horse race along the same course.
- Keys100, FL. This is a road race that ends in Key West, which is a little different than most of the other races on this list.
- Angeles Crest, CA. Another of the original six dating back to 1986.
- Plain, WA. This one just got added to the list recently. It’s about 106 miles long and is unique in that there are no course markings and/or aid stations.
- HURT, HI. 100 miles in sunny Hawaii? Sign me up! Lots of vertical and technical trails makes this a very tough course.
- Massanutten Mt., VA. Relatively local race with lots of vertical. This is on my tentative 2018 schedule right now.
- Grindstone, VA. Friday night start makes this different than most others that start Saturday morning. This is on my tentative 2018 schedule right now.
Just Off the List
- Pine Creek Challenge, PA. Relatively close race on rails-to-trails.
- Viaduct Trail, PA. Relatively close race on an old railroad bed, but more of Fat Ass style event.
There are a good dozen or so additional races out west that I would love to do, but haven’t quite piqued my interest enough to be added to the list considering the travel requirements. There’s also a couple more within a 5 state radius that I may end up doing before several/many of the ones above just because I’m more likely to hop in a car and drive 10 hours to a race than get on a plane to cross the country.
Do you have race wish list?