We are just a couple of weeks away from the Badwater Ultramarathon, a 135 mile run through Death Valley to the top of Mt. Whitney in California! They bill it as "the world's toughest footrace." With 130 degree temperatures and 13,000 feet of vertical climbing, who could argue?
Wow, and I was whining about 474 feet of vertical in my last race?!? ;-)
The only reason I bring this up is because the heavy favorite is a native Minnesotan! Scott Jurek, now a Seattle resident, hails from Proctor, MN, a town just outside of Duluth. He is one of the greatest ultramarathoner in the world today, if not the greatest, and he has chalked up some amazing accomplishments. Prior to this year, Jurek won 7 consecutive Western States 100's (he skipped this year's race to focus solely on Badwater). He is also the defending champion at last year's Badwater Ultramarathon, winning it in his first attempt and setting a new course record of 24 hours and 36 minutes.
I read that Jurek hopes to break his old record and finish Badwater in under 24 hours (good grief!). Here is wishing him luck!