On July 8 at 6 a.m., 125 runners left Silverton to embark on the 100.4 mile Hardrock 100 Endurance Run through the steep and rugged San Juan Mountains. The grueling course climbed a total of 32,992 feet at an average elevation of 11,023 feet above sea level. The race course included 13 mountain passes, several treacherous creek and river crossings and topped out at 14,048-foot Handies Peak. This year the course was run counter-clockwise, which by some is regarded as the more difficult direction. The deep snows left by last winter added yet another element of difficulty. Karl Meltzer won the men's race in 28:29:15, while Sue Johnston took home the womens honors with a time of 32:07:41. Fifty four runners were unable to make the courses 48-hour cut-off time.

  With Paul Sweeney close behind, Alison Kreutzen kicks steps up a steep snow field below Grant-Swamp Pass, elevation
  12,920 feet. Sweeney, who won the race last year, finished in second place with a time of 30:02:28.

  Pacer Bob Africia leads as Hal Koerner takes a moment to collect himself while climbing the 11th of 13 mountain
  passes in the race. Koerner finished with a time of 31:29:27.

  Sue Johnston, center, makes her way up a snow-patched basin after passing over 13,140-foot Oscars Pass. Johnston was
  the first woman to finish.

  Racer Betsy Nye nurses her 1-year-old baby, Lizzy, at the Grouse Gulch aid station 42.1 miles into the course.

  Emily Baer fuels her body at the Grouse Gulch aid station while her husband, Ernst, takes care of the foot


In this week's issue...

January 25, 2024
Bagging it

State plastic bag ban is in full effect, but enforcement varies

January 26, 2024
Paper chase

The Sneer is back – and no we’re not talking about Billy Idol’s comeback tour.

January 11, 2024
High and dry

New state climate report projects continued warming, declining streamflows