100 mile madness

Rain-soaked trails and 17,000 feet of climbing welcomed riders to the inaugural Durango MTB 100 held last Saturday in conjunction with the NORBA finals. Pro and amateur riders competed on the 100-mile race, which followed singletrack, doubletrack and four-wheel drive roads through some of the most jaw-dropping scenery in the San Juans. The inclement weather, coupled with the sheer challenge of the course, tested even the hardiest of riders, with only 15 of the 70-some participants crossing the finish line. Pro rider Bart Bowen, of Albuquerque, finished first, completing the course in 9 hours and 11 minutes. Katherine Zambrana, of Steamboat Springs, won the pro women’s category in 11 hours and 58 minutes, edging out fellow female rider Shannon Tupa, of Boulder, by one minute.

(mouse over photos for captions)

A rider speeds though the first descent of the day after a long, muddy climb behind Durango Mountain Resort.

51-year-old Patrick Spahr, of Moab, takes a break from the saddle and pushes his bike up the final ascent of lap one above Graysill Mine.

Torrential downpours the night before the race made for  a wet, muddy race, forcing riders to get creative with their water proofing.

A rider begins a precarious descent at 11,500 feet.

Men's pro winner Bart Bowen carries his bike over a creek crossing late Saturday afternoon.

A mud-caked Mike Hogan, who took third, powers his way though one of the final ascents of the day.

Despite the outrageous mileage and muddy conditions, some racers still managed to eke out a smile when the sum made one of its brief appearances.

Katherine Zambrana, of Steamboat, navigates the slippery singletrack near Engineer Mountain on her way to completign the first lap and winning the women's division.






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