My Profile

@Joerobe

Raleigh, IL Raving since 2017 50 States hopeful/finisher, Marathon Maniacs #13469 Keith Roberts 50/50 Challenge Active 12 hours, 59 minutes ago

About Me

  • Running club(s):

    Marathon Maniacs

  • Rave race:
  • Race that's calling my name:

    Keys 100

  • I run because:

    one of these days, I will suddenly stop…

My Races

Organize, track & review your races and personal bests here.

50 States Map
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Half Marathon

Marathon

Ultramarathon

(Marathon or Ultra) + Half

Marathon + Ultra

Other

Future Races

Personal Bests (9)

Race Distance Location Date Result
24 hr Canal Fulton, OH Jun 8, 2019 62 mi
10 hr Paducah, KY Jun 1, 2024 40 mi
100 Miler Hot Springs, SD Aug 16, 2019 29:02:47
100K Huntsville, TX Feb 2, 2019 15:31:27
50 Miler Belleville, WI May 25, 2024 10:54:29
55K Estes Park, CO Sep 1, 2019 10:25:33
50K Jacksonville, AL Apr 13, 2024 5:24:48
Marathon Newport, OR Jun 2, 2018 4:22:53
Half Marathon Carrier Mills, IL Oct 5, 2019 2:05:36

Future Races (7)

Race Distance Location Date Paid
50K Fayetteville, WV Jun 22, 2024
50K Hastings, MN Jul 6, 2024
56 Miler Grassy Butte, ND Jul 26, 2024
100K Van Meter, IA Aug 31, 2024
100 Miler Flagstaff, AZ Sep 21, 2024
Marathon Belleville, IL Sep 28, 2024
100 Miler Alcoa, TN 2025

Past Races (103)

Race Distance Location Date Result My Raves My Performance
10 hr Paducah, KY Jun 1, 2024 40 mi
50 Miler Belleville, WI May 25, 2024 10:54:29
50K Marietta, SC May 11, 2024 6:37:14
50K Willard, MO Apr 27, 2024 5:48:25
50K Jacksonville, AL Apr 13, 2024 5:24:48
50K Chickamauga, GA Mar 23, 2024 6:59:37
50K Laurel, MS Mar 2, 2024 6:22:48
50K Provencal, LA Feb 17, 2024 6:25:38
Half Marathon Murphysboro, IL Feb 10, 2024 2:37:25
Marathon Belleville, IL Sep 30, 2023 5:24:38
50K Ozark, IL Aug 26, 2023 8:39:27
Marathon Belleville, IL Sep 24, 2022 5:56:28
Marathon Panama City Beach, FL Dec 4, 2021 4:45:35
Marathon Vienna, IL Nov 14, 2021 4:29:09
Marathon Harrisburg, IL Oct 2, 2021 4:40:14
Marathon Belleville, IL Sep 25, 2021 4:25:01
Marathon Grand Island, NE Aug 28, 2021 4:37:11
Marathon Cape Girardeau, MO May 1, 2021 4:36:09
Marathon St Louis, MO Apr 11, 2021 4:31:04
Marathon Belleville, IL Sep 26, 2020 5:51:44
100 Miler Cheney, KS Jul 11, 2020 33:58:31
Marathon Shiprock, NM May 1, 2020 6:13:35
50K Libertyville, IL Dec 14, 2019 5:52:27
50 Miler Vienna, IL Nov 9, 2019 11:51:12
Marathon Harrisburg, IL Oct 26, 2019 5:07:18
Half Marathon Carrier Mills, IL Oct 5, 2019 2:05:36
Marathon Belleville, IL Sep 28, 2019 4:58:30
55K Estes Park, CO Sep 1, 2019 10:25:33
100 Miler Custer, SD Aug 16, 2019 29:02:47
50K Wichita, KS Jul 27, 2019 6:22:31
24 hr Canal Fulton, OH Jun 8, 2019 62 mi
100K Raphine, VA May 11, 2019 16:10:14
50K Loudonville, OH Apr 6, 2019 8:00:39
Marathon Hilo, HI Mar 17, 2019 5:13:40
100K Bend, TX Mar 2, 2019 17:40:12
100K Huntsville, TX Feb 2, 2019 15:31:27
100K Bandera, TX Jan 5, 2019 16:50:00
Marathon Memphis, TN Dec 1, 2018 5:58:55
50 Miler Vienna, IL Nov 10, 2018 11:07:49
Marathon Harrisburg, IL Oct 27, 2018 5:03:39
Marathon Belleville, IL Sep 29, 2018 4:39:05
50K Ozark, IL Aug 25, 2018 8:40:00
50K Kansas City, KS Jul 21, 2018 6:51:40
Marathon Anchorage, AK Jun 23, 2018 5:05:36
Marathon Port Angeles, WA Jun 3, 2018 4:52:45
Marathon Newport, OR Jun 2, 2018 4:22:53
Marathon Ojai, CA May 27, 2018 4:54:17
Marathon Warwick, RI May 19, 2018 7:10:19
Marathon Hartford, CT May 18, 2018 6:11:17
Marathon Westfield, MA May 17, 2018 5:22:18
Marathon Fairlee, VT May 16, 2018 5:33:06
Marathon Nashua, NH May 15, 2018 5:32:36
Marathon Portland, ME May 14, 2018 5:22:14
Marathon Kennebunk, ME May 13, 2018 4:54:33
Marathon Rhinebeck, NY May 12, 2018 4:35:40
50 Miler Manhattan, KS Apr 21, 2018 11:04:57
50K Ottawa, KS Mar 24, 2018 5:59:33
50K Milton, FL Feb 17, 2018 7:05:08
50K Tulsa, OK Jan 20, 2018 6:19:32
Marathon Little Rock, AR Dec 16, 2017 4:48:07
Marathon Oljato-Monument Valley, AZ Nov 18, 2017 5:40:22
Marathon Harrisburg, IL Oct 28, 2017 4:24:35
Marathon Atlantic City, NJ Oct 22, 2017
Marathon Dover, DE Oct 21, 2017
Marathon Carolina Beach, NC Oct 8, 2017 5:26:30
Marathon Bluefield, VA Oct 7, 2017 4:55:52
Marathon Commerce, OK Oct 1, 2017 5:05:20
Marathon Belleville, IL Sep 30, 2017 4:33:20
Marathon Sundance, WY Sep 14, 2017 5:18:35
Marathon Baker, MT Sep 11, 2017 5:38:33
Marathon Sioux Falls, SD Sep 10, 2017 5:00:58
Marathon Detroit Lakes, MN Sep 9, 2017 4:54:35
Marathon Titusville, PA Aug 6, 2017 4:42:34
Marathon Aspen, CO Jul 15, 2017 4:58:31
Marathon South Williamson, WV Jun 10, 2017 5:03:24
Marathon Traverse City, MI May 27, 2017 4:44:06
Marathon Green Bay, WI May 21, 2017 5:24:50
Marathon Fargo, ND May 20, 2017 4:48:14
Marathon Olathe, KS Apr 22, 2017 5:26:25
Marathon Xenia, OH Apr 9, 2017 6:20:31
Marathon Cumberland, MD Apr 8, 2017 4:54:52
Marathon Grand Rivers, KY Mar 11, 2017 5:29:19
Marathon Columbia, SC Mar 4, 2017 4:28:30
Marathon Rockmart, GA Feb 25, 2017 4:51:37
Marathon Greenville, MS Feb 11, 2017 4:33:08
Marathon New Orleans, LA Feb 5, 2017 4:59:42
Marathon Surfside Beach, TX Feb 4, 2017 4:55:28
Marathon Phoenix, AZ Jan 15, 2017 4:42:53
Marathon Boulder City, NV Jan 14, 2017 4:37:51
Marathon Huntsville, AL Dec 10, 2016 4:29:55
Marathon Nashville, TN Nov 12, 2016 4:28:54
Marathon Wynne, AR Nov 5, 2016 4:28:00
50K Apalachicola, FL Oct 23, 2016 6:14:10
Marathon St. Charles, MO Oct 2, 2016 4:29:15
Marathon Belleville, IL Sep 24, 2016 4:45:57
50K Hooper, NE Aug 20, 2016 6:22:34
Marathon Firth, ID Jul 30, 2016 4:44:33
Marathon Salt Lake City, UT Jul 25, 2016 4:47:47
Marathon Dyersville, IA Jun 25, 2016 4:57:41
Marathon New Harmony, IN May 28, 2016 5:05:32
Marathon Shiprock, NM May 7, 2016 4:57:35
Half Marathon Harrisburg, IL 2014 2:12:31
Half Marathon Harrisburg, IL 2013 2:17:38

My Raves

Overall Rating: Not my jam, but ok! Course Difficulty: Easy squeezy. This course is run on a 1/2 mile horse racing track. Crushed limestone fines that were pretty soft after … MORE

Overall Rating: Not my jam, but ok!

Course Difficulty: Easy squeezy. This course is run on a 1/2 mile horse racing track. Crushed limestone fines that were pretty soft after a massive run.

Course scenery: Basically none. It was in a fairgrounds with typical fencing and grass infield.

Race Production: Very good. Everything was where it was supposed to be and when it was supposed to be there. Pre-race communication email had all necessary information. One aid station with most things you could want.

Race Swag: Ok. T-shirt, finisher medal was not great, hat, draw string bag.

My Performance: Ok. Had a race that cancelled and opted for this one as a replacement. Was tired and achy from the 50 miler last week, and decided to call it at 40 miles and live to fight another day. Walked the last 5 miles.

Final notes: I needed to get some night miles in during a low key event and this fit the bill. A person would really have to love this format to do these races on a continual basis, I don’t like this format that much. As far as a venue to get some chip timed miles in, it gets the job done; as far a being highly enjoyable – not my thing.

DIFFICULTY
1
PRODUCTION
4
SCENERY
1
SWAG
4

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Overall Rating: Great! Course Difficulty: This course is a 26 mile out and back (yes, that's 52 miles) on a couple of rail trails in southern Wisconsin. The trails were … MORE

Overall Rating: Great!

Course Difficulty: This course is a 26 mile out and back (yes, that’s 52 miles) on a couple of rail trails in southern Wisconsin. The trails were in crazy good shape for inches of rain that we had the day and night before, a few puddles here and there, but nothing you couldn’t step around; the tunnel closure made for the extra 2 miles (and giant hill). Other than dodging sticks, this was a very easy course.

Course scenery: A couple of covered bridges, some of the run was along the river, most was pretty standard rail trail scenery, good enough to keep your mind occupied, but nothing extraordinary.

Race Production: Outstanding. Everything was where it was supposed to be and when it was supposed to be there. Pre-race communication was excellent, everything I needed to know was in the manual. The RD was on site regularly, and gave a hug and a medal to everyone who crossed the finish line. Chip timed with wonderful aid stations and volunteers every 5-6 miles. Three designated aid stations so crew can meet you on the course if needed.

Race Swag: Good. T-shirt, custom finish medal, buff, draw string bag, and race company socks.

My Performance: Ok. This was PR, but not an amazing performance. I went into the race knowing that I wasn’t trained up for it, but in the training for the 100 miler this fall, needed to feel a little pain (the achy type that comes from being on your feet a while). After the hill at mile 47, I wasn’t 100% sure I could finish, but managed to get it done. Walked a lot!

Final notes: This is an excellent race, and Ten Junk Miles is an excellent host. I don’t drink, but there were a couple of keg’s of beer and free pizza at the finish for people to enjoy as the other runners came in. I still feel like I haven’t embraced this part of the ultra culture enough; when the race is over I’m already thinking about the family at home and work next week…so I just get on the road instead of hanging out. I’m looking forward to getting more time with the TJM tribe; if you’re looking for a good 50k or 50 miler in Wisconsin, this is it.

DIFFICULTY
2
PRODUCTION
5
SCENERY
3
SWAG
5

1 member marked this review helpful. Agree?

Overall Rating: Excellent! Course Difficulty: This course is a 5ish mile loop, run 6 times for the 50k. While runnable and technical generally don’t belong together, this is not a … MORE

Overall Rating: Excellent!

Course Difficulty: This course is a 5ish mile loop, run 6 times for the 50k. While runnable and technical generally don’t belong together, this is not a rock picking high stepping kind of technical, it’s more of “you are going to go fast, and you are going to trip and fall kind of technical! I tripped and fell more on this course than all of my other races combined. 100’s of trips!!! While I guess that’s par for the course on something called Knocking on Woodstock, it’s a different kind of tripping than they were doing back then. Here’s a nursery rhyme I wrote on the third loop:

I fell while running
I fell while walking
I fell while quiet
I fell while talking

Sometimes I fell up
Sometimes I fell down
But no matter the fall
I ended up on the ground

The roots were like fingers
Grabbing my toes
The rocks like a fighter
Delivering blows

I laid on the ground
looking up through the trees
Assessing the fresh scrapes on my knees

I mumbled to myself
I’m too old for this
But I was halfway done
So I got up and finished

lol…anyway.

Course scenery: All shade and beautiful SC scenery. Couple of stream crossings (on bridges) that were really pretty.

Race Production: Outstanding. Everything was where it was supposed to be and when it was supposed to be there. Pre-race communication was sparse, but there were no surprises. The RD was on site the whole time, even the day/night before, which gave the three of us camping at the start line a good chance to sit and talk with him. Chip timed with one self serve aid station at the start/finish line. Tailwind and standard AS fare.

Race Swag: Good. No t-shirt, but a custom finish woodallion and race company socks, stickers, etc.

My Performance: Ok. This could be a very fast course, as long as you don’t get discouraged by trips and falls or your gps being off (it will be short). Finish time was right where it should have been on this course.

Final notes: This is an excellent race, with excellent production. There was a nice depth of field with lots of experienced ultra runners and fewer first timers than several of my previous races; it was a very friendly running community. Something else I found interesting, is that in all the trips and falls with all the runners, I didn’t hear one foul word all day. I know that doesn’t mean anything to most people, but it is the culture I was raised in, where you just don’t use profanity; it was honestly quite refreshing. This is a good SC race, with an RD and volunteers that care about the runners and the integrity of the event. Go give it a shot.

DIFFICULTY
4
PRODUCTION
5
SCENERY
4
SWAG
3

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Overall Rating: Excellent! Course Difficulty: This course is a super easy out and back rail trail; starting with paved trail for 2.5 miles and the rest being gravel and cinders. … MORE

Overall Rating: Excellent!

Course Difficulty: This course is a super easy out and back rail trail; starting with paved trail for 2.5 miles and the rest being gravel and cinders. There is a really long low grade uphill from the turnaround to the about mile 20.

Course scenery: True to rural Missouri; pasture, woods and shade.

Race Production: Really good. Everything was where it was supposed to be and when it was supposed to be there. Pre-race communication was excellent. There was a pretty long line at race check in, but I think I just got there at a busier time than normal. It flowed quick and no issues. Chip timed, aid stations every 2.5 miles, wonderful aid station staff.

Race Swag: Really good. Excellent t-shirt and custom finish buckle.

My Performance: Not great. This could be a very fast course, but as a training run, my legs were already tired. There was also wind, a little bit of heat (80 degrees), and humidity to deal with. I walked most of the last 5 miles out of pure exhaustion, but all part of the greater plan.

Final notes: This is an excellent race, especially for first timers. The 50 miler may be a little tight with a 14 hour time limit (early start), but is certainly doable. There is a lot of support throughout, and a friendly running community to get to know. If you’re looking to cross MO off of your list, this is a good one.

DIFFICULTY
1
PRODUCTION
5
SCENERY
3
SWAG
5

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Overall Rating: Great! Course Difficulty: This course is super easy;100% paved rail trail. The only real obstacles are sticks and pine cones on the paving, a few areas of buckled … MORE

Overall Rating: Great!

Course Difficulty: This course is super easy;100% paved rail trail. The only real obstacles are sticks and pine cones on the paving, a few areas of buckled asphalt, and road crossings.

Course scenery: There is enough scenery to keep it interesting, not so much that you are overwhelmed with the WOW factor. Good views of Georgia/Alabama mountains and pine forests.

Race Production: Really good. Everything was where it was supposed to be and when it was supposed to be there. Pre-race communication was excellent and the RD was present throughout. The only issue I did have was I had to wait on Tailwind to be mixed at one aid station, and ran out of fluids between the last two aid stations; this probably cost me a PR but not complaining, this is just a part of distance running and I appreciate the energetic volunteers. As a heads up: this is not a chip timed race, if you are looking for that type of accuracy in timing, you may want to speak with the RD before signing up for this one.

Race Swag: Really good. Pint glass with race logo, lots of stickers, running company branded socks, excellent t-shirt and custom finish medal. There was some other gear to buy, and honestly, I probably will online, I was just too tired afterward.

My Performance: Pretty good. This course makes you want to run early, but it can come back to bite in the heat at the end. It’s one of my faster 50k’s, so you know its a fast course.

Final notes: Parts of this course smell absolutely amazing. If a person could eat the wonderful scent of pine trees, I would order up a big helping of the Chief Ladiga Trail! Seriously though, I had a terrible chest cold for the 4 days before this race, only slept about 2.5 hours the night before (37 degrees in a tent), and still managed to pull out a fast-ish race. I’m a little shocked at the finish times, they are good, but I would expect them to be a lot faster; maybe the pain of the constant asphalt on the knees is a contributor to that.

All said, this is a well directed race on a good course. If you are looking to get into ultra running, or are looking for a PR, this is a great course.

DIFFICULTY
1
PRODUCTION
5
SCENERY
3
SWAG
5

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Overall Rating: It was really good for an inaugural run. Course Difficulty: Although the course only had a couple of miles of pretty technical trail, the amount of power that … MORE

Overall Rating: It was really good for an inaugural run.

Course Difficulty: Although the course only had a couple of miles of pretty technical trail, the amount of power that had to be exerted on the hills was extremely difficult. While I was walking, I remember thinking that most people I know (non ultra runners) would not be able to walk this trail, it is just that tough.

Course scenery: Excellent. Ran past a couple of waterfalls, through some old mining tunnels, and some rock formations. Good view of the cove from the top.

Race Production: I’m a little mixed on this. For the inaugural race, it was excellent-everything when and where it should have been, plenty of communication, and an on time start. The one area that seemed to be lacking was trail marking, most trails that I have run as complex as this one have a general rule that you can see the next confidence marker from the current one, that was not the case here. There were people lost and taking wrong turns all day. While I personally didn’t get off course, there were several times I had to stop to try and see a flag, and at the end, a couple of miles where I had no idea if I was on the right trail. This could be improved.

Another thing that was odd was the lack of attention at the finish line. As I came in, there were spectators, but no one to say ok, you’re done. You just kind of stand there…eventually a guy came over and asked if I got a jar. I took one, grabbed a burger and took off. I think this area could use some work.

The aid stations were excellent!!! Wide variety of fuel, and the volunteers were helpful and attentive. They led you through every step from checking in to heading out.

Race Swag: You know, there is just kind of a standard that when you finish a race, you get a medal or a buckle; I know that ultras do things differently, but the finisher gift for this one was a glass jar with a leather wrap…that’s going to be tough to hang next to the other medals. I’m sure that some people like jars or pottery or wood carvings or whatever, I’m just not all about that. The other stuff – drop bag, shirt, sticker, head band were all good.

My Performance: Not bad. I knew going in that this would be a vertical challenge so I was hoping for a finish around 8 hours. I was shocked in the last few miles when I was trending for a 7 hour finish. This time definitely doesn’t reflect how difficult this course is (I had some 21 min miles), but there were some pretty fast downhill sections to make up for it.

Final notes: This is a hard course, physically. Your bones, joints, and spine will hurt. At times you will feel like you can’t walk anymore from the steepness of the hills, and on the way down, you will feel like your IT bands are going to snap. You’re feet will get wet in the creek crossings, and if it rains up to a week before the race, you will be in a muddy sloppy mess for part of it. Much of the rocky part of the trail also had a 4-6” leaf covering over it, which made a nice mine field for the ankles.

Just being real with this assessment, but if you feel up to the challenge, this trail will take you to some beautiful places you would otherwise never see.

DIFFICULTY
5
PRODUCTION
5
SCENERY
5
SWAG
3

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Overall Rating: It was ok. Course Difficulty: Challenging. It was two 12.5 mile loops and one 7-ish mile loop. The course on a dry day would have been fast with … MORE

Overall Rating: It was ok.

Course Difficulty: Challenging. It was two 12.5 mile loops and one 7-ish mile loop. The course on a dry day would have been fast with many runnable portions, but with all the rain it was a slick muddy mess. Many water crossings, some waist deep, with the first one being at mile 1. Your feet will be wet all day.

Course Scenery: Good scenery in tall pine forests. Nice trail.

Race Production: Ok, not great. First of all, if you plan to run this race, have a 4×4 or high clearance AWD; if it doesn’t rain, you can make it in a 2WD, if it does, you’ll have a hard time. Next, while everything was technically in place, at times I just felt lost, like no one knew exactly where to send me, or at the least weren’t forward about it. I still ended up in the right place, but for whatever reason, it just felt there was not clear leadership…
The trail was marked really well and the aid stations were excellent.

Race Swag: Custom medal, t-shirt, and finisher hoodie..

My Performance: Better than expected. I was using this as a long slow training run for an upcoming 100 miler and wanted to average 13 min/mile. I was actually quite surprised at my finish time based on the number of creek crossings and the challenge of the mud.

Final notes: If you need to cross MS off of your list, this one will get it done, just be prepared that all of the challenges you will face may not be on the course.

DIFFICULTY
4
PRODUCTION
3
SCENERY
4
SWAG
3

1 member marked this review helpful. Agree?

Overall Rating: Great! Course Difficulty: Moderate. 95% trail with a mix of sand, clay, rocks, roots, water, pine needles. Almost all rolling hills with only a single major climb that … MORE

Overall Rating: Great!

Course Difficulty: Moderate. 95% trail with a mix of sand, clay, rocks, roots, water, pine needles. Almost all rolling hills with only a single major climb that was about 1.5 miles long.

Course Scenery: Really nice run through pine forest, along a creek for a portion, and remediated logging ground.

Race Production: Very good!! Communication and logistics were excellent. All aid stations were right where they should have been, pre-race check in was a breeze, and post race food and massage were fantastic.

Race Swag: Custom medal and awesome shirt.

My Performance: Better than expected. I was using this as a long slow training run for an upcoming 100 miler and wanted to average 13 min/mile. I didn’t actually expect to do that well since I’m not trained up for it, but this ended up being a fairly quick course for me.

Final notes: I think this may be one of the best entry level ultras available. There is enough of the hard stuff to make it interesting (rocks, roots, sand, creek crossings, hills, etc), but not enough to be discouraging. Races like Tunnel Hill don’t really give enough exposure to those things, while races like the Tejas Trail Banderra will eat your lunch.

If you have that ultra itch but aren’t sure, give this one a shot!

DIFFICULTY
3
PRODUCTION
4
SCENERY
4
SWAG
4

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Overall Rating: Average. Course Difficulty: Easy. Most of the race was run on airport and surrounding roads, so pancake flat. There were a few rollers on the other portion, but … MORE

Overall Rating: Average.

Course Difficulty: Easy. Most of the race was run on airport and surrounding roads, so pancake flat. There were a few rollers on the other portion, but nothing crazy long or hard.

Course Scenery: Majority of course was on airport, so not great. The portion that was not on the airport was just ok.

Race Production: Very good!! Communication and logistics were spot on. Everything was where it should be and at the time it should have been there. Post race was still around when the slow folks arrived, so that another plus. The chili was literally the best I have ever had.

Race Swag: Custom medal and nice hoodie.

My Performance: It was ok. Walked the last couple of miles with Debbie, which was wonderful.

Final notes: I don’t love half marathons, but I needed some mid winter motivation. This will probably be the last half I ever do. For people who like this distance, I think it is a very good race.

DIFFICULTY
2
PRODUCTION
4
SCENERY
2
SWAG
3

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Nothing new to add, see previous raves for this race. It is a good hometown race with wonderful support. Will plan to run as long as they host it. MORE

Nothing new to add, see previous raves for this race. It is a good hometown race with wonderful support. Will plan to run as long as they host it.

DIFFICULTY
3
PRODUCTION
3
SCENERY
3
SWAG
3

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Overall Rating: Excellent! Course Difficulty: This race is crazy hard and lands in the hottest most humid time of year. Primarily technical single track with plenty of rocks, creek crossings, … MORE

Overall Rating: Excellent!

Course Difficulty: This race is crazy hard and lands in the hottest most humid time of year. Primarily technical single track with plenty of rocks, creek crossings, and seldom a flat spot.

Course Scenery: It is the best of Southern Illinois. You won’t find better scenery in this part of the world.

Race Production: Perfect!!! Communication and logistics were spot on. Everything was where it should be and at the time it should have been there. Post race was still around when the slow folks arrived, so that another plus. RD was at the finish congratulating finishers. Top notch production from Stephanie Page!

Race Swag: High quality custom medal, a couple of stickers, and nice tech shirt.

My Performance: Recently starting a new career and having a toddler in the house, my training stunk and for the the month before the race was non existent. I set out knowing that anything less than 8 hours would be great, anything less than 9 hours would also be great, and anything less than ten hours would also be great…basically, I was hoping to finish. I walked most of 16 miles, so 8.5 hours wasn’t too bad.

Final notes: This is a hard race. I signed up to support a friend who was doing her first ultra, and we both made it; in ultraworld, that’s a win. I think I said this on the last review of this race as well, but this race is not for the faint of heart, it will make you cry and question why you ever decided to start running. At some point, you will probably sit down and think I just can’t go anymore, but then you’ll find a way, because there is no one coming to get you. If you decide to go for it…just…don’t…quit!

DIFFICULTY
5
PRODUCTION
5
SCENERY
5
SWAG
5

2 members marked this review helpful. Agree?

Nothing new to add, see previous raves for this race. It is a good hometown race with wonderful support. Will plan to run as long as they host it. MORE

Nothing new to add, see previous raves for this race. It is a good hometown race with wonderful support. Will plan to run as long as they host it.

DIFFICULTY
3
PRODUCTION
3
SCENERY
3
SWAG
3

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Overall Rating: Excellent! Fantastic all paved course down the main beach frontage roads in PCB. Course Difficulty: A few tiny ups and downs and a couple speed bumps and potholes, … MORE

Overall Rating: Excellent! Fantastic all paved course down the main beach frontage roads in PCB.

Course Difficulty: A few tiny ups and downs and a couple speed bumps and potholes, otherwise, cake. The course is open, which is why I gave it a 4 (I had to yell to get some kids eyes off their phone and back on the road), but overall, about as good as it gets.

Course Scenery: Running along the beach is always good, and here on the gulf coast winter doesn’t hurt you too much.

Race Production: Really good. Packet pickup had no hiccups, pre-race communication was timely and accurate, and race production was really good. The one thing that seemed like it could have been better was the on course fuel. There were peppermints at each aid station, so my fuel for the race was 4 peppermints and a bottle of Gatorade. After all of the races I’ve run, this seems to be a point that is not well addressed. It would be wise to bring fuel with you if you do this race.

Race Swag: High quality custom medal, pretty sweet sticker, and nice long sleeve tech shirt.

My Performance: LOL, this should be entertaining. Tuesday night I was taken to the ER with a passing kidney stone, Wednesday I was at home trying to not die and pass a kidney stone, Thursday I flew to Florida (time bomb still ticking), Friday I tan a few test miles, could only do 4 and averaged 13 min/mi (not good enough for the 6 hour cutoff).
I was shocked that I could even finish this race, and thought really seriously about a DNS (more on that in the blog later), and when I pulled off a sub 5 I was ecstatic!!!

Final notes: This was a pretty big race for me and my Raceraves profile, because I finally turned that last dark blue state to purple-that’s right Karen, I have now “officially” run an “actual” marathon in all fifty states-lol. I still have to deal with the kidney stone and get that thing passed, but this a pretty nice way to seal up 2021!

DIFFICULTY
3
PRODUCTION
4
SCENERY
4
SWAG
4

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Overall Rating: Average course with excellent production and potential for fast times. Course Difficulty: Long slow ups and downs (think 15 miles at 1%) on a crushed limestone surface. Really … MORE

Overall Rating: Average course with excellent production and potential for fast times.

Course Difficulty: Long slow ups and downs (think 15 miles at 1%) on a crushed limestone surface. Really easy course.

Course Scenery: Good southern Illinois scenery, 100% rural running.

Race Production: Outstanding! These folks always do a fantastic job and you can have about anything you want at aid stations.

Race Swag: High quality custom medal and nice thin cotton hoodie.

My Performance: It was an average run, not great – not terrible.

Final notes: I’ve run a couple of 50 milers here, and I certainly never enjoy the weather at this race, however if it were a few weeks or a month earlier, it may be one of my favorite runs. I participated this year as a way to log some miles toward my 1000 mile goal, and so I was pleasantly surprised with my time. Always good production with this group!

DIFFICULTY
2
PRODUCTION
5
SCENERY
3
SWAG
4

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Overall Rating: Tough race with rainy conditions then heat. Course Difficulty: Lots of big hills at the beginning and flattening out after halfway. A couple of unsupported major highway crossings. … MORE

Overall Rating: Tough race with rainy conditions then heat.

Course Difficulty: Lots of big hills at the beginning and flattening out after halfway. A couple of unsupported major highway crossings. Nice course.

Course Scenery: About as good as it gets for southern Illinois. Start at Garden of the Gods SP and ends downtown Harrisburg.

Race Production: Not great this year. I give a lot of grace to RD’s, especially during COVID season. The aid stations/volunteers were lacking, as was course support. At the end of the race, runners had to snake their way through the stage area of a local festival to get to finish line. I think there could have been a little better option logistically, but I was happy to see this race happen.

Race Swag: Had a repeat medal and shirts from a previous year. Not casting any stones, as each participant received two long sleeve tech shirts and it is a nice medal…just expected it to be different as a repeat runner.

My Performance: Not awesome. Started off on a PR pace running in a nice warm rain, then the rain stopped and the leg cramps started (only my second race with leg cramps), which I credit partly to the lack of salty foods, drinks, or GU at aid stations. All in all not a terrible day.

Final notes: I make an intentional effort not to blame others for my outcomes. At the end of the day, I am thrilled that this race happened and love the work that the RD is doing! If anything, I should have shown up with more than a water bottle…so all good!

DIFFICULTY
4
PRODUCTION
2
SCENERY
4
SWAG
3

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Overall Rating: Good run on a nice day. Course Difficulty: The course changed from previous years due to covid restrictions imposed by the city, so it was a more challenging … MORE

Overall Rating: Good run on a nice day.

Course Difficulty: The course changed from previous years due to covid restrictions imposed by the city, so it was a more challenging course, particularly on the hilly second half. All but about 2 miles of the course was run on the Metro rail trail which runs alongside the public rail system, and 100% paved.

Course Scenery: Not great, it was really just the backside of buildings, rail lines, and a local college campus’ parking lots, but it was fine. The one reprieve was a nice wooded shady area that went for 5 or 6 miles.

Race Production: Good. Packet pickup was easy, the aid stations were as expected, and there were plenty of volunteers.

Race Swag: This one is a little odd. The quality of the shirt and medal were good, I just didn’t (still don’t understand what they are). Maybe because I’m not from the community, or its an inside kind of knowledge…but I don’t get it.

My Performance: Surprisingly good, much in part to the weather I suspect.

Final notes: Didn’t think this race was going to happen, but the team was able to pull it off. Really happy about that.

DIFFICULTY
4
PRODUCTION
3
SCENERY
2
SWAG
3

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The Nebraska State Fair marathon was wonderfully organized with outstanding volunteers. We had no issues with packet pick up, race start, or direction on the course. The volunteers were very … MORE

The Nebraska State Fair marathon was wonderfully organized with outstanding volunteers. We had no issues with packet pick up, race start, or direction on the course.

The volunteers were very friendly, and always eager to help. I am sincerely thankful for the neighbors who faced their lawn sprinklers toward the road, those little burst of cold were a lifesaver.

This race was as advertised – flat and fast. I was expecting to be about 5:15 – 5:30 with my injured leg, so imagine my surprise when it was a 4:37…what???

The day was hot, and I expect it will probably always be that way in Nebraska in August, but there was plenty of Gatorade and water, along with GU’s, fruit snacks and cuties. The aid stations were every 2 miles on the mark, we’ll done!

The swag was pretty decent; a nice custom medal and a long sleeve tech shirt.

The one thing I didn’t love, is that there were no really salty electrolytes on course. I usually bring my own, but forgot them at the hotel…the day was hot enough that the Gatorade wasn’t doing the trick and many people were cramping up on course. I don’t blame the race for this, just caution future runners not to forget yours.

All in all, a wonderful race to cross Nebraska off of your state list or to simply cross a marathon off of your bucket list.

Happy running!!!

DIFFICULTY
2
PRODUCTION
5
SCENERY
3
SWAG
3

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Overall Rating: Excellent. Hosted by a locally known ultra runner who got it right! Course Difficulty: A few rolling hills to keep the legs and mind challenged, all paved and … MORE

Overall Rating: Excellent. Hosted by a locally known ultra runner who got it right!

Course Difficulty: A few rolling hills to keep the legs and mind challenged, all paved and good course support,

Course Scenery: Not amazing, but it was a good foot tour of Cape Girardeau, MO.

Race Production: Again, really good. Shuttle buses to and from parking area, excellent finish line support, and wonderful aid stations.

Race Swag: Nice medal, 1/4 zip pullover, and some sweet running socks!

My Performance: I was just getting back into the swing of running, and was going through some ups and downs in my personal life; pleased with the outcome.

Final notes: Well produced race. Considering making this one of my yearly runs.

DIFFICULTY
3
PRODUCTION
4
SCENERY
3
SWAG
4

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Overall Rating: Good. No issues, started on time. Course was crazy windy. Course Difficulty: This course was really flat and fast. A few rollers here and there, but overall easy. … MORE

Overall Rating: Good. No issues, started on time. Course was crazy windy.

Course Difficulty: This course was really flat and fast. A few rollers here and there, but overall easy. The downside is probably that you are completely exposed to the elements, so anything other than perfect conditions would affect you.

Course Scenery: The first 2 miles are pretty cool as you are going over old bridges on Rt 66, the next 8ish mile are on a levee (pretty boring), back over the bridges, 10 more pretty boring miles, and then it gets interesting running in front of the arch and some historic riverfront and old town.

Race Production: Really good. The only issue I had was coming into town as on Sat, and no available packet pickup that afternoon/evening. I was planning to be dropped off at the start, but the race was 100% in on packet pickup at the finish and take the shuttle bus. Ended up having my son pick up the packet earlier in the week (which he had no issues with). Not a big deal, but definitely needs to be planned for.

Race Swag: Good medal, nice long sleeve shirt, and commemorative mug.

My Performance: Good, probably would have gotten a PR, just ran out of steam after fighting the wind.

This was a good race that was pretty close to home. I generally don’t do city races, and didn’t love fighting the post race (Cardinal’s game) traffic when it was over, but I was super thrilled to get back into an actual in person race.

If you’re looking for a race that is fast and well run in the StL area, this will do.

DIFFICULTY
2
PRODUCTION
4
SCENERY
2
SWAG
3

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Virtual run with my wife to support the RD and Belleville Main Street team during the COVID downturn. Nice to be able to run a marathon with Debbie! MORE

Virtual run with my wife to support the RD and Belleville Main Street team during the COVID downturn. Nice to be able to run a marathon with Debbie!

DIFFICULTY
3
PRODUCTION
3
SCENERY
3
SWAG
3

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This race was a crazy challenge for me. I wanted to do a 100 this year, and most were cancelled, but in the true spirit of the Honey Badger Race...this … MORE

This race was a crazy challenge for me. I wanted to do a 100 this year, and most were cancelled, but in the true spirit of the Honey Badger Race…this one went on.

I am going to make this a short review and say the race production, and course were excellent, my performance stunk.

All was going according to plan (13 min/mi pace) until I blistered the bottom of both feet and rubbed the skin off of the inside of my legs at about mile 55. That’s right, you can chafe that bad. At mile 67 I threw in the towel, but my crew wouldn’t accept that. They coned me out, tossed me in the shower (ouch!!!), stuck me on a cot with a fan blowing on my unmentionables for about 5 hours, then took my whiny butt back to the course. That next part was a brutal 50k, but it’s what hundred mile races are…raw – gritty – determination.

I will be forever grateful for my crew for pushing me through that, no way I would have made it without them.

At the end of the day (and a half), if you want to try a hundred miler, this is a great one. It’s hard, not in mountain or trail sense, but in a cooking eggs on the pavement sense. BTW, there were only 13 finishers, so that will tell a little about how hard it was.

DIFFICULTY
3
PRODUCTION
4
SCENERY
3
SWAG
4

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Virtual run with my wife to support the RD and the Navajo Nation Marathon Planning team during the COVID downturn. Nice to be able to run a marathon with Debbie! MORE

Virtual run with my wife to support the RD and the Navajo Nation Marathon Planning team during the COVID downturn. Nice to be able to run a marathon with Debbie!

DIFFICULTY
3
PRODUCTION
3
SCENERY
3
SWAG
3

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Overall Rating: Really good cold weather run. Course Difficulty: A few rolling hills to keep the legs and mind challenged, but wide and flat asphalt or cinder the entire time. … MORE

Overall Rating: Really good cold weather run.

Course Difficulty: A few rolling hills to keep the legs and mind challenged, but wide and flat asphalt or cinder the entire time.

Course Scenery: Nice northern landscape. The four loops get a little old, but the scenery around the lake and river is enough to keep it interesting.

Race Production: Good. There were some aid stations called out on the race documentation that weren’t there, and some of the AS food and drink was different, but all in all, no major hiccups or blunders…definitely a solid organization.

Race Swag: The real reason I was here. I needed that 12th buckle for the year and this is a nice one! Other features were a well designed long sleeve tee, a race sticker, and an aluminum water bottle – all high quality stuff.

My Performance: Better than expected. I picked up some new friends on the way, stopped to help a couple of people in need (which ate up about 10 minutes), and still managed a PR; needless to say, I’m good with that.

Final notes: I don’t love cold, so this will never be my favorite race, however, it is a fantastic race and a really good organization; I can certainly put my stamp of approval on it.

DIFFICULTY
3
PRODUCTION
4
SCENERY
3
SWAG
5

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Overall Rating: Really good first time or PR race. Course Difficulty: I think this is about as easy as a fifty miler gets; enough scenery to keep it interesting, but … MORE

Overall Rating: Really good first time or PR race.

Course Difficulty: I think this is about as easy as a fifty miler gets; enough scenery to keep it interesting, but no elevation or challenging terrain to speak of. The cold sort of hurts, but it is November.

Course Scenery: Nice southern Illinois scenery with wetlands, hardwood forests, creeks and rail trestles.

Race Production: Always good. DRM does a great job with the aid stations, volunteers, and general race coordination. No surprises, so all good.

Race Swag: One of the best buckles you’ll ever get, and a pretty sweet hoodie and hat to go along with it – free race pic downloads.

My Performance: I ran this entire race with a friend for her first 50 miler, and she beat her 12 hour goal…she said anything less than 12 was a win, so we won!

Final notes: TH100/50 is a great race. Be prepared for the cold, and spend some time training for repetitive foot strikes and you can definitely get this one done.

DIFFICULTY
2
PRODUCTION
4
SCENERY
3
SWAG
5

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In speaking with the RD, due to complications with local municipalities, this is likely the last year for this race in its current form. The Shawnee Marathon has been a … MORE

In speaking with the RD, due to complications with local municipalities, this is likely the last year for this race in its current form.

The Shawnee Marathon has been a true representation of Southern Illinois scenery, and has provided local runners with an outstanding opportunity to gain access to a quality marathon without breaking the bank. This years medal is one of the best I have received at any race to date, and the volunteers willingness to stand in the wind and rain, shows some serious dedication to the runners.

I’m a little sad to see this one go, as it was my hometown marathon and the first race that I ran with any of my kids; but looking forward to the next iteration and the continued chance to give runners access to some of southern Illinois’ hidden scenery.

DIFFICULTY
4
PRODUCTION
3
SCENERY
4
SWAG
5

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I don't generally do half marathons...unless they're training runs, but I couldn't pass this one up. An old friend was diagnosed with cancer and I was a privileged to go … MORE

I don’t generally do half marathons…unless they’re training runs, but I couldn’t pass this one up. An old friend was diagnosed with cancer and I was a privileged to go and support her.

This was a beautiful two loop course through Sahara Woods State Fish and Wildlife area, and a perfect 50 degree morning.

Couldn’t have asked for a better run close to home…oh, and I got a half marathon PR, so there’s that!

Wishing Teresa the very best recovery.

DIFFICULTY
3
PRODUCTION
4
SCENERY
4
SWAG
3

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Overall Rating: Excellent. Good. Course Difficulty: Just enough uphill and downhill to keep it interesting. Course Scenery: Nice city main street and tour of local neighborhoods. Race Production: Really good. … MORE

Overall Rating: Excellent. Good.

Course Difficulty: Just enough uphill and downhill to keep it interesting.

Course Scenery: Nice city main street and tour of local neighborhoods.

Race Production: Really good. Aid stations had water, electrolytes, and fruit, plenty of restrooms, lots of course marshals and local PD to give direction.

Race Swag: Gloves for the streakers this year, good race medal and ultra soft tee.

My Performance: Was shooting for 5hrs and got 4:58…so slow, but predictable.

Just a straightforward, good run. No issues and no surprises. This is a marathon only, so no other races to cause any kind of confusion.

DIFFICULTY
3
PRODUCTION
3
SCENERY
3
SWAG
3

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Overall Rating: Really good...and hard...and high! Course Difficulty: I wasn't completely recovered (whatever that means) from the 100 mile a couple of weeks ago, so hard became harder. If you're … MORE

Overall Rating: Really good…and hard…and high!

Course Difficulty: I wasn’t completely recovered (whatever that means) from the 100 mile a couple of weeks ago, so hard became harder. If you’re not from higher altitude, you will struggle with this one a little. There is about 2500′ of elevation gain each way, and the altitude makes it that much more difficult. The terrain was about 24 miles of paved, gravel, or dirt roads-and about 10 miles of double and single track trail.

Course Scenery: Nothing like the mountain views. This course wound through the Roosevelt National Forest and Rocky Mountain National Park, which is simply breathtaking.

Race Production: It was good. The race was a fundraiser for a local HS cross country team, and many of the students were working the aid stations-they did fantastic. Course was marked really well, and no issues with packet pick-up, start, or finish.

Race Swag: Cool buckle with the starting elevation and a nice comfort tee.

My Performance: I had a hard time with the altitude. Three of my middle miles were 45 minutes or more, simply because I couldn’t stand up; it was just bad. My stomach wasn’t happy. So, even if it was my first DFL, I finished my first mountain ultra.

Final notes: As far as races go, this one had everything; including a 12hr time limit, which is the only reason I could finish. If you aren’t up for a 100 miler over 11000′ mountains, but still want to try your hand in higher altitude, this is a great run to participate in.

DIFFICULTY
5
PRODUCTION
4
SCENERY
5
SWAG
4

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Overall Rating: Outstanding course and volunteers...maybe the best aid station workers anywhere! Course Difficulty: I struggle with rail trails, and this was no exception. The course was smooth with crushed … MORE

Overall Rating: Outstanding course and volunteers…maybe the best aid station workers anywhere!

Course Difficulty: I struggle with rail trails, and this was no exception. The course was smooth with crushed limestone (typical rail trail) with really long drawn out ups and downs. I’m pretty sure we were never on flat ground and we only went over a total of three hills in the entire 100 miles…so yes, there was one 18.5 mile uphill. Up to about 50 miles I was on track for a 22-24hr finish…then the incessant pounding of my feet got the best of me and I limped the rest of it and made just over 29 hours.

Course Scenery: Absolutely gorgeous. Since I was walking a lot, it was nice to be surrounded by forest, rock formations, creeks with amazing rapids, and some beautiful skies.

Race Production: Perhaps the best part of the entire race. The people working at the aid stations treat you like family (the good side), and there were no surprises along the way. Packet pick up and finish line were pretty low key, but got the job done.

Race Swag: Shiny new buckle, super soft cotton tee, and hammer collapsible cup.

My Performance: As mentioned earlier, I struggle on rail trails; there just isn’t enough variability in the terrain, so my performance was not great. I think I would just sum it up by saying, “I didn’t quit”.

Final notes: This was a hard run for me, and I’m not sure I have any more 100 milers in my future. I don’t want this review to reflect negatively on the course or volunteers in any way…both were outstanding; I think I probably just don’t have the time to put in the necessary amount of miles to thrive at this distance. Of course, it has only been 1 day since I completed the race, it could just be my aching feet talking…I suppose time will tell.

DIFFICULTY
3
PRODUCTION
4
SCENERY
5
SWAG
4

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Overall Rating: Great race, excellent venue. Course Difficulty: Flat and fast. Very easy course, as it is 2 laps on a 100% paved path, excellent for PR or first timer. … MORE

Overall Rating: Great race, excellent venue.

Course Difficulty: Flat and fast. Very easy course, as it is 2 laps on a 100% paved path, excellent for PR or first timer. There were a couple of sketchy areas where you ended up under bridges with some homeless folks, I may just be a little paranoid because I’m a country boy, but it’s part of the course, so giving a heads up.

Course Scenery: It was dark, so it wasn’t the normal running scenery, but lit area of the the path ran along the river and it was just a very pretty laid back run. There was a section that ran along a pretty busy road (moderately scary) next to the interstate, which wasn’t very scenic, but it was only about 1/2 mile of the course.

Race Production: Fantastic. Aid stations were as promised, staff was kind and helpful, and no hitches in the packet pick up.

Race Swag: Nice buckle and comfy tee.

My Performance: Not great, but not terrible. I was sick for about 10 miles of it (which kept me from getting a PR), and thought maybe it was the late night run…truth is, you can’t consume PB&J, pickle juice, Oreos, Gatorade, Pringles, and Vanilla wafers in one setting and be ok…who knew??? If I had been a little wiser with my fueling, it would have been a very strong 50k.

Final notes: First time back out since my mental crash at Eagle Up, and it went well. Had my wife and youngest son on the course with me, and there is nothing better to lift the spirits. This is a fantastic race with a great organization. If you’re in Wichita, or looking for a Kansas race, I can wholeheartedly endorse this one.

DIFFICULTY
2
PRODUCTION
3
SCENERY
4
SWAG
4

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Overall Rating: Really good. Big RWB event with camping and rucking. Course Difficulty: Flat and fast, although I had a lot of trouble with the "flatness" of the course making … MORE

Overall Rating: Really good. Big RWB event with camping and rucking.

Course Difficulty: Flat and fast, although I had a lot of trouble with the “flatness” of the course making my feet hurt. I suppose over the last few months my feet have gotten used to ups and downs with a lot of movement over small obstacles. This course was a 5 mile loop on rail trail with very slight grade.

Course Scenery: I was on the course for nearly 16 hours and I didn’t really get bored. The out path is run next to a canal, over a bridge, and then back along a river. Nice mid-western scenery.

Race Production: Really good. No surprises at all. Everything started on time, and the volunteers were great. One large aid station at the start finish and a few smaller ones along the way. All aid stations were as advertised, and the course needed no marking. Pre-race information was timely and accurate. Registration was a breeze.

Race Swag: Awesome buckle and moisture wicking tee.

My Performance: I went into this race thinking it would be an easy run, but there are no easy 100k’s…period! I had a breakdown somewhere around mile 15, and if my son hadn’t paced me for 15 miles throughout the race, I am certain that I would have quit early.

Final notes: I’m not sure why this course was so hard for me, other than I think I broke something psychological during the UROC 100k in May and haven’t recovered yet. This is an excellent course for first time or experienced ultra runners. The RD was on course all day, and really tries to take care of his runners. If you’re looking to PR or break into the Ultra world, this would be a great place to do it!

DIFFICULTY
2
PRODUCTION
4
SCENERY
3
SWAG
5

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Overall Rating: Excellent! Course Difficulty: 10 out of 10. This one had everything: mountains, streams, quad crushing downhills, 12000' of elevation gain, miles of ankle busting technical rocks, and a … MORE

Overall Rating: Excellent!

Course Difficulty: 10 out of 10. This one had everything: mountains, streams, quad crushing downhills, 12000′ of elevation gain, miles of ankle busting technical rocks, and a bear that was a little too curious for my comfort. It was tough.

Course Scenery: Amazing. Most of the course was run along the ridgelines of some of the Blue Ridge Mountains, and the vistas were gorgeous. Add in the sweet fragrance of blooming flowers, pine trees, and the mountain mist…nice.

Race Production: Really good. No surprises at all. Everything started on time, and the volunteers were great. All aid stations were as advertised, and the course was marked well enough that I never felt lost. Pre-race information was timely and accurate.

Race Swag: Awesome buckle and dry-fit tee.

My Performance: I had a hard goal of “don’t DNF” and a soft goal of 18 hours; needless to say, I’m thrilled with my finish time.

Final notes: This is a tough course meant to test your body and brain. The field is fast, as this is a race, and not just a run. Definitely not a first timers race for the 100k, but if you feel you’re up to a challenge…go get that buckle!

DIFFICULTY
5
PRODUCTION
5
SCENERY
5
SWAG
5

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Overall Rating: Outstanding. Tough course. Great Organization. Course Difficulty: Although it wasn't the most technical trail you will ever run, the elevation gain more than makes up for it. The … MORE

Overall Rating: Outstanding. Tough course. Great Organization.

Course Difficulty: Although it wasn’t the most technical trail you will ever run, the elevation gain more than makes up for it. The uphills, especially B.A.H. (the fact that they named it should tell you something), will leave you gasping for air, and the downhills will set your quads and knees on fire. It is a different kind of difficult than some other races, as this one will make you work for it all day.

Course Scenery: Really good. Views of several waterfalls, runs that trace the river, and some overlooks. The trees weren’t in bloom quite yet, but still very nice.

Race Production: I am very impressed with this race organization. The running community in this part of the world is very tight knit, and so the production team and it seems most of the runners were very close and constantly talking. Course markings were excellent, so I was never afraid that I was lost, and communication was good. Aid stations and volunteers were second to none. RD’s were on the course throughout the day cheering runners on and taking feedback. Just really good.

Race Swag: Yes please! Headsweats technical trucker, cotton blended tech shirt, and the Forget the PR buckle I’ve been chasing. Other runners got a second 5 year or 10 year buckle that was little fancier.

My Performance: My goal was 8 hours, and I finished in 8 hrs 39 seconds…so I performed as expected. I didn’t push really hard in this race, as it was, in large part, training for the UROC 100k. I am certainly happy with this finish time.

Final notes: I think the number of runners I spoke with on the course, who have done this race 5-10 times, and are also doing the 100 miler in June speak well enough for the organization and quality of the run. It was exactly as hard as I expected it to be, and I was pleasantly surprised by all the other “little extras”. If you plan to go and run this one, get ready for a couple of monster hills, and enjoy your time in the woods.

DIFFICULTY
5
PRODUCTION
5
SCENERY
5
SWAG
5

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Overall Rating: Middle of the road. It was a good balance of all the marathons I’ve run up to this point. Course Difficulty: It was pretty tough. Other reviews that … MORE

Overall Rating: Middle of the road. It was a good balance of all the marathons I’ve run up to this point.

Course Difficulty: It was pretty tough. Other reviews that I read said there were some challenging hills…I would say this is in the top five most challenging runs that I’ve done as far as hills go. Plan on going up or down, sometimes steep for the first 16 miles, and then slight grades for the last 10. The first 12 miles are pretty shaded, but be ready for full sun and warm temps for the end of the race. This race is also run on open roads, some with narrow shoulders, and can be a little dangerous. I almost got hit by a tractor trailer, and ran into another runner trying to get out of this guys way; he was going way too fast, but still, something to keep in mind.

Course Scenery: Amazing for the first 20 miles, not so much after that. You will get an excellent representation of the big island on this run. Waterfalls, surfers, rainforest, lava beaches, sea spray, etc.

Race Production: It was ok. After doing ultras for a while, I have forgotten the difference between ultra aid stations and marathon aid stations. There were three places that had hammer gels, and water/Gatorade every two miles. Volunteers were excellent, the race started on time, and timing mats worked throughout the course. Packet pickup was fine and pretty smooth. I really don’t have any complaints, but I also don’t have that “overwhelmed by how good it was” feeling either, so like I said at the beginning, it was ok.

Race Swag: Good medal, nice short sleeve tech shirt.

My Performance: Awesome…uh…I mean, average. I just don’t have enough self control to go to Hawaii and not hike six miles in to see the green sand beach, or hike down to the black sand on the north coast, so I was tired at the start. Add to that the three 100k’s I’ve done this year, and my severe underestimation of the hills and heat, and I’m ok with average. I don’t think we need to spend too much time on that though, I mean c’mon, I’m in Hawaii running my 50th state marathon; the whole thing was a celebration!

Final notes: This Marathon was the perfect end to my KR 50/50 Challenge! It was a good representation of all the runs that I completed to get to this point, and it made me earn the medal. I’m happy with the choice, and getting this state crossed off of the list.

If you’re looking to run this course, bring a few of you’re own gels, some salt, and a little sunscreen; you’ll be good to go!

DIFFICULTY
4
PRODUCTION
3
SCENERY
5
SWAG
3

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Overall Rating: Easier than Bandera, harder than Rocky Raccoon; slower than both. Course Difficulty: It was tough. The course was two 31 mile loops with five creek crossings in the … MORE

Overall Rating: Easier than Bandera, harder than Rocky Raccoon; slower than both.

Course Difficulty: It was tough. The course was two 31 mile loops with five creek crossings in the first two miles, so wet feet the whole race. Lots of hills, rocks, and roots, but many more sections that could be run than Bandera at Camp Eagle. There was a very technical portion from about mile 17 to mile 20, made more so by the constant drizzle. Somewhere between mile 20 and 25 there is a nice long flat boring stretch, which would normally be agony, but by this point your legs will be begging for it.

Course Scenery: Beautiful. Had some vistas overlooking the Colorado River (the Texas one), and surrounded by waterfalls and rock formations all day.

Race Production: Very good. Race started and continued with no problem and course was marked really frequently so there was no fear of getting lost. No big fanfare or aid station support on this one, it was self supported, and at times lonely, but the race company did everything they said they would. Had a self sign in at each aid station and scenic overlook. I had my two oldest kids crewing for me, and I would not have made it to the finish without them; if you attempt this race, either take a crew, or be prepared to confront the deepest darkest parts of your soul, no free passes on this run.

Race Swag: Awesome buckle, questionable shirt. I’ve loved the other shirts that I received from this organization, but this sleeveless tee thing, I just don’t know…

My Performance: Not great, but it was the third brutal 100k in three months, so I’ll take the finish. In hindsight, if I had known these three races were going to be as hard as they were, I wouldn’t have done them all in one season (picture me raising my glass to a lesson learned).

Final notes: Tejas Trails intends to test your will, and they get it done. They want you to finish, but they are going to make you earn it. If you see someone with one of their buckles, just know it was a fight to get it and a little of that persons soul was left in those Texas Hills.

DIFFICULTY
5
PRODUCTION
4
SCENERY
5
SWAG
5

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Overall Rating: Somewhere between "Way harder than I thought it was going to be" and "oh, my aching feet". WOW! Course Difficulty: Definitely not as hard as Bandera at Camp … MORE

Overall Rating: Somewhere between “Way harder than I thought it was going to be” and “oh, my aching feet”. WOW!

Course Difficulty: Definitely not as hard as Bandera at Camp Eagle, but it was tough and technical. During the day, I repeated this line thousands of times “don’t get distracted”. If you take your eyes off of the trail for a second, you’re going down…there are just that many roots. I was expecting a “few rollers” for hills, when in reality, there are a few flat spots-the rest is up and down. My Garmin showed about 4100′ of elevation gain.

Course Scenery: It was nice. Huntsville State Park is a pretty place, and a runner will get several views of the lake, swamp, sand washes, and backwoods. It was true to the area.

Race Production: Very good. Race started and continued with no problems, aid stations were well staffed and stocked, and course was marked really frequently so there was no fear of getting lost.

Race Swag: Good. Shiny new 100k buckle and nice long sleeve tee.

My Performance: Well…it’s complicated. The run started out ok, but then my feet began to ache. Not sure what was going on, maybe the water, the mud, the super soft ground, or all the roots, but they were killing me. So, I slowed down, walked a lot, enjoyed some good conversation with other runners and got my finish. Not great, but still a PR, so I’m good with it.

Final notes: There is one particular part of this race that is absolutely demoralizing. At mile 50 you come in to the starting line aid station for the 2nd time…trying to muster the strength to go out for that last 12 miles is one of the hardest things I’ve ever done; and I wasn’t alone. I spoke with and encouraged several other people who had decided they couldn’t do it, helped get them out of that dark place and back on the course. I remember telling one guy in particular “just imagine that you do quit, you go to the car, sleep for 8 hours, get back up and realize you still have 8 hours to finish the race; you’ll really regret doing that”. Apparently it was enough, because he finished.

Anyway, just because the race ads say “great first time ultramarathon” doesn’t mean it’s going to be easy. This course nearly beat me.

DIFFICULTY
4
PRODUCTION
4
SCENERY
3
SWAG
3

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Overall Rating: She don’t love you, but she’s going to make sure you remember her name... Before the review: I am thoroughly impressed with this organization. On Monday before the … MORE

Overall Rating: She don’t love you, but she’s going to make sure you remember her name…

Before the review:
I am thoroughly impressed with this organization. On Monday before the event, the venue where the race was to be held cancelled, saying they could not allow this event to happen due to the recent rains. Instead of cancelling, this team went to work, found a different venue (Camp Eagle), cleared and marked trails, and made a plan. As an out of stater, I cannot express my gratitude that Tejas Trails did this. Outstanding!

This Rave is for the Camp Eagle location, as I did not run any at the Texas Hill Country State Park.

Course Difficulty: Really hard. Don’t underestimate this course. Very few runnable sections, lots of steep climbs, and rocks…oh, the rocks. On a scale of 1-10, I give this one an 8, to be a ten I would have had to cross a mountain and a river. I am thankful it was only an 8.

Course Scenery: Really good. Great high views of the Texas Hill country, several dry creek crossings, and lots of white limestone single track. As a bonus, on my 100k I was able to see sunrise, high noon, and sunset…lol.

Race Production: Volunteers were off the charts good, started on time (delayed an hour for the venue change, but well publicized), aid station were well stocked and right where they should be, course markings were outstanding. I have one complaint, but it’s minor; there was no service to deliver drop bags back to the start…for those of us that needed to get on the road, that was an issue. I muled my second one after the last time at that aid station, and packed them both back with me for the last 5.5 mile segment, which did keep me from running, it’s a minor complaint, but that’s why the 4 stars instead of 5, all else was great.

Race Swag: Good, solid 100k buckle and nice short sleeve tee.

My Performance: This was my first 100k, so I didn’t really have expectations; I thought maybe 14-16 hours. When I walked across the finish line at nearly 17 hours, I was really just happy I hadn’t quit…it was that hard. Needless to say, I am happy with my performance, simply being able to finish something that 3 years ago would have been impossible. Oh, and I beat the Western States qualifying time…so, there’s that.

Final notes: This race is a beast. Plan for it, train hard, and don’t underestimate it, the marketing definitely doesn’t do the difficulty justice. If you’re looking to test your mettle, give this girl a whirl; she’ll make you laugh, cry, and laugh at yourself for crying…then she’ll hand you a shiny new buckle and make you want to do it all over again.

DIFFICULTY
5
PRODUCTION
4
SCENERY
5
SWAG
4
My Media

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Overall Rating: It was average. Course Difficulty: Mild rolling hills throughout the course made for a nice mix of muscles being used. Heat and wind were definitely a factor in … MORE

Overall Rating: It was average.

Course Difficulty: Mild rolling hills throughout the course made for a nice mix of muscles being used. Heat and wind were definitely a factor in this race, although I would take the warm over the cold any day.

Course Scenery: This course takes you on a foot tour of the best sights in Memphis. I was never bored for something to look at.

Race Production: For the number of people there, production was pretty smooth. My #1 complaint is that there were no gu packs where they were supposed to be, an obvious result of starting 10000 or so half marathoners with a few thousand full marathoners. It’s not that big of a complaint, but by the time I took the pop tarts from the kid in her front yard at mile 16, I was starving. The race was delayed twice for lighting, but there were plenty of notifications, and communication was very good. No pizza when I got to the finish, but whatever, I was ready to leave anyway.

Race Swag: It was a good medal and long sleeve tech shirt.

My Performance: Slow for me, but I had chosen the night before to stay with a couple of friends and see them across the finish line. If I had run my normal pace, this would have been a better than average race for me.

Final notes: I signed up to run this with a family member, and when she couldn’t make it, I made the best of a situation. I was able to run the entire race with three good friends, one a first timer; and enjoy a warm and sunny winter day. Despite my indifference toward the race in general, St Jude is a great organization. While I am not a huge fundraising type of person, and I don’t love the “big” race scene, it was still good to be able to raise a part of the $11 million that went to St Jude as a result of this weekend.

DIFFICULTY
3
PRODUCTION
3
SCENERY
3
SWAG
3

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Overall Rating: Great race with a lot of great people. Course Difficulty: All rail trail-non technical course. I thought I may just skate through this one, but with the cold … MORE

Overall Rating: Great race with a lot of great people.

Course Difficulty: All rail trail-non technical course. I thought I may just skate through this one, but with the cold and the really long uphill, it turned out to be more challenging than I thought. Really wanted a sub ten hour run, but realized about 25 miles in that wasn’t going to happen.

Course Scenery: It was good. Course runs through the Cache River wetlands and quite a few outcroppings on the way back to the tunnel.

Race Production: Packet pickup was a little confusing, but ended up not being any problem. Aid stations and volunteers were excellent. Food was good at the end.

Race Swag: Outstanding buckle for 50 and 100 milers, nice thin cotton hoodie, choice of several hats.

My Performance: Not great, but I just don’t do well in cold weather. All in all I’m satisfied.

Final notes: This was a good 50 miler that was close to home, so I wanted to give it a try. I’m flirting with the idea of trying this as my first 100 miler, but may try for a warmer climate instead. Will just have to see. This course is obviously fast for those runners looking to PR or set a record, for the rest of us, it’s a large enough race that you have people to talk to the entire run. Worth it.

DIFFICULTY
2
PRODUCTION
4
SCENERY
4
SWAG
3

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Overall Rating: Very good. Course Difficulty: Much more challenging with the new course. Several large hills over the first 6 miles Course Scenery: Much nicer than the previous course, a … MORE

Overall Rating: Very good.

Course Difficulty: Much more challenging with the new course. Several large hills over the first 6 miles

Course Scenery: Much nicer than the previous course, a good view of Southern Illinois.

Race Production: It was ok. Not super crazy about the pre-race info stream, and there was an issue with a long distance between aid stations…I’m sure they’ll get that worked out. All else was good; packet pickup was smooth, shuttles were no problem.

Race Swag: Meh…didn’t love the designs, but it was a quality medal and shirt…just personal preference.

My Performance: All good. Ran the race with some friends and adjusted to their pace.

Final notes: I plan to run this race every year as it is my hometown marathon. It’s a small race (50 in the marathon), but the course is improving and overall seems to become more credible each year.

DIFFICULTY
4
PRODUCTION
3
SCENERY
3
SWAG
2

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Overall Rating: Very good. Course Difficulty: Easy. A few rolling hills, but overall very easy. There is one section (about 6 miles) that is really long, hot, and lonely...you'll just … MORE

Overall Rating: Very good.

Course Difficulty: Easy. A few rolling hills, but overall very easy. There is one section (about 6 miles) that is really long, hot, and lonely…you’ll just have to struggle through it; otherwise a super easy run.

Course Scenery: As expected, a foot tour of Belleville, IL. Better than inner city industrial parks, not as good as the mountains of Colorado.

Race Production: Outstanding. Race day packet pickup was a breeze, race started on time, all aid stations were exactly as advertised, and post race food was excellent.

Race Swag: Medal was much better this year, and long sleeve shirt was a great color and design.

My Performance: I struggled for the first 7 miles, my legs just haven’t ever recovered from the New England races this summer, after that I probably ran the fastest 10 miles I’ve ever done, and then I hit a wall at mile 18 that just wouldn’t let go. It was ok, I would have liked a PR, but wasn’t willing to get injured to get it.

Final notes: I plan to run this race every year. It is a close race for me, and I definitely want to support the hometown races. Enjoy seeing it get better and better. Hats off to the Belleville Running Club and Toolen’s Running Start.

DIFFICULTY
2
PRODUCTION
4
SCENERY
3
SWAG
3

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Correction: This course *has* rocks...everywhere...except where there's a giant mudhole, or a tree across the path, or a creek. Sometimes the rocks are combined with these entities, or neatly arranged … MORE

Correction: This course *has* rocks…everywhere…except where there’s a giant mudhole, or a tree across the path, or a creek. Sometimes the rocks are combined with these entities, or neatly arranged up the side of a super steep hill…yay!

All that being said, I think I’ve discovered why I’m so terrible at trail runs; after stopping every 20-40 strides for a hundred or so intervals, dodging mud, crawling over trees, or picking my way through the landmines (rocks and roots), and still only covering about 11 miles, my legs finally say “screw you buddy, you’ve lost your mind…we’re taking over” and instead of pushing through the wall, I walk for the next 15 or so miles.

At this moment at this race I realized I was going to be close to missing the 9 hour cutoff (I know right, 9 hrs on a 50k…absurd). So what did I do…no, not run, I walked faster…remember, the legs were still in control and they just didn’t trust my judgement anymore.

8 hours and 40 minutes later…I finished, still asking myself what just happened? Here’s the summary:

Overall Rating: No idea how to rate this.

Course Difficulty: Hardest race I have ever done. Saw on a post race email that there was a 26% finish rate -interpretation- 74% of people who signed up either overestimated themselves or underestimated the course…I’m going with the latter.

Course Scenery: As good as it gets for Southern Illinois. You are literally in the middle of waterfalls and geological wonders. Unfortunately, if you take your eyes off of the trail for very long…you die (or hit your toe on a rock and wish you had died).

Race Production: The race started on time, and the aid stations were phenomenal! There was an 8.5 mile span with no aid station, which I think is too long for this course. I stopped and filled a water bottle for another runner out of my hydration pack, and sat on a rock for a five minute rest to recover a little during that segment. The correspondence and overall presentation of the race organization lacked the kindness of the people of southern Illinois; not mean, just blunt and straightforward. I didn’t love that.

Race Swag: This race, because of the difficulty, should give buckles for all distances. The medal is nice, but wow, if you finish this race in a decent time, you’ve done something.

My Performance: I thought about dropping, I was just exhausted, then my buddy Joel (who I met on the course) reminded me it’s just as far to walk to the truck as it is to finish. I’m happy with just completing it before the cutoff.

Final notes: This is not a beginners course, do not underestimate it.

DIFFICULTY
5
PRODUCTION
3
SCENERY
5
SWAG
3

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Overall Rating: Outstanding!!! Course Difficulty: Hard. Horse trails for a portion and a lot of technical single track. I found myself carefully choosing each footstep along this course, seldom even … MORE

Overall Rating: Outstanding!!!

Course Difficulty: Hard. Horse trails for a portion and a lot of technical single track. I found myself carefully choosing each footstep along this course, seldom even raising my head to look around.

Course Scenery: Probably about as good as it gets for Kansas. I was never bored for something to look at. Course was shaded at least 80% of the way with a lot of rock outcroppings and lake views.

Race Production: Great. Registration and packet pickup were a breeze, start went off with no problems, aid stations were off the charts good. The Trail Nerds are an excellent organization.

Race Swag: Nice medal, finishers hat and choice of mug or glass, chip timing. I signed up too late to get a shirt, which is a bummer, but I’m not going to hold that against them since I was fully aware going in.

My Performance: I’m fully satisfied with a 6:52 on this course. It was tough, and warm…and tough…and warm.

Final notes: This is not a course for someone who only loves road running, but it is awesome for someone who wants an intro into technical trail running-doable, but not easy. I think we may have gotten the best trail conditions possible, improving the experience for me; I can see how the trail could get messy fast. Loved this race, highly recommend.

DIFFICULTY
5
PRODUCTION
5
SCENERY
5
SWAG
4

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Overall Rating: Good. Course Difficulty: Moderate. Definitely not flat, but not hilly the whole time either. There was a fairly long stretch of gravel, which my feet welcomed, and a … MORE

Overall Rating: Good.

Course Difficulty: Moderate. Definitely not flat, but not hilly the whole time either. There was a fairly long stretch of gravel, which my feet welcomed, and a short stretch of single track, non technical.

Course Scenery: It was good, but not exactly what I thought it may be in Alaska. Had views of mountains for much of it, but there are probably better runs in AK if scenery is your thing.

Race Production: Really good. Shuttles were flawless, started on time, good start and finish chutes, and aid stations were excellent. No gels at this race, only pretzels, red twists, and oranges. Packet pickup was a breeze.

Race Swag: Nice medal, and long sleeve tech finisher’s shirt.

My Performance: I think I could have finished this race a little faster (maybe 4:45), but I found some folks who were running a little slower to hang out with, and that was better for me than finishing 20 minutes faster.

Final notes: Alaska is a long way away, even by plane…just be ready for that.

DIFFICULTY
3
PRODUCTION
3
SCENERY
3
SWAG
3

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Overall Rating: Very good. Course Difficulty: This course has some challenging hills, and on the day I ran it, a pretty stiff head wind and some rain. That aside, it … MORE

Overall Rating: Very good.

Course Difficulty: This course has some challenging hills, and on the day I ran it, a pretty stiff head wind and some rain. That aside, it is about average for races I run. 98% paved trail or road, with one small section of hard packed cinders.

Course Scenery: Awesome at times, boring at others. There was a section of the race that had a sign that said “twilight zone”, I thought it was a reference to the movie, but as it turns out, it was just a long boring stretch. I wasn’t really expecting that, but compared to the mountain views, the bay, and the dense forest, it was a small and insignificant portion of the run.

Race Production: Excellent! Good communication, outstanding volunteers, and timely starts. The RD was willing to let me pick my bib up on race morning if I needed, an important note for anyone doing a double or maniacs.

Race Swag: Awesome. Nice medal, drop bag, and a 1/4 zip tech pullover.

My Performance: Not great. My finish time doesn’t really reflect it, but when I woke up, I just didn’t want to run a marathon that day. I think maybe I had just been on the road too long and had lost motivation. I spent much of the run just trying to convince myself to keep going. Happy that I pushed through and got state 48 crossed off the list.

This is not the easiest race to get to. You are going to have to drive 100 miles through slow traffic to get here, but once you arrive, it is a good run. At one point on the trail, I followed an otter for about 100 yards, so you’re right in the middle of nature. If you don’t mind the drive, it’s a good run.

DIFFICULTY
3
PRODUCTION
4
SCENERY
4
SWAG
4

1 member marked this review helpful. Agree?

Overall Rating: Very good. Course Difficulty: Very easy course with a few hills. Course Scenery: Ran along the ocean for a few miles, through the old port, and the along … MORE

Overall Rating: Very good.

Course Difficulty: Very easy course with a few hills.

Course Scenery: Ran along the ocean for a few miles, through the old port, and the along bay for the rest of the run. There was a lot to look at and was a fantastic representation of this part of the world.

Race Production: Really good. The volunteers at this race were excellent. While I was walking to the early start at 5:30, there were already smiling faces at each of the intersections just waiting. Aid stations were well stocked, and packet pickup was no-frills/no problems. Course was well marked.

Race Swag: Good. Nice quality tech shirt and handmade glass medal.

My Performance: Odd. So this was my 10th marathon in 21 days and I got a PR??? I checked my watch a couple of times to make sure I didn’t cut a part of the course, and all was right. Somehow, I just felt really good running that day; not sure why, but I’ll take it.

Thoroughly enjoyed this part of the world, it is just beautiful, and the people are really friendly. The PR was a bonus. If you’re looking for a BQ, this is very likely a good place to make it happen.

DIFFICULTY
2
PRODUCTION
3
SCENERY
4
SWAG
3

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Overall Rating: Very good. Course Difficulty: Super easy. The course started with an uphill out and back, then downhill or flat the rest of the way. Course Scenery: Beautiful California … MORE

Overall Rating: Very good.

Course Difficulty: Super easy. The course started with an uphill out and back, then downhill or flat the rest of the way.

Course Scenery: Beautiful California mountain, agriculture and beach scenery. The smell of all the citrus blossoms and flowering plants was equal to or better than the scenery though.

Race Production: Great. The RD opened packet pickup a little early for me, the race started on time, excellent aid stations and volunteers, and perfect course markings. The only thing that I didn’t love (I get it, just didn’t love it), was that if you weren’t able to make packet pickup on time, there wasn’t a race day option, and your bib would be sold at the end of expo. Pretty tough for out-of-staters driving in, and a little extra stress before the race.

Race Swag: Loved the tech shirts and designs, and the medals were pretty fancy.

My Performance: Still recovering during this race, so I took it slow and easy. Managed to finish in less than 5 hours, and I was totally good with that.

My family and I walked from the finish to the beach (100 yds), where we relaxed for a little while after the race. Got to meet my Race Raves family on the way out, and then headed north for a week of camping along the coast. This is a very well produced and run event along a really pretty course; I can certainly recommend it.

DIFFICULTY
3
PRODUCTION
4
SCENERY
4
SWAG
3

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Overall Rating: Very pretty course. Course Difficulty: On a normal day, I would have loved this course...with shin splints, I wanted to quit. Small rolling hills in beautiful scenery. Course … MORE

Overall Rating: Very pretty course.

Course Difficulty: On a normal day, I would have loved this course…with shin splints, I wanted to quit. Small rolling hills in beautiful scenery.

Course Scenery: Really pretty wooded run opening up to the bay.

Race Production: Excellent! Cannot compliment this crew enough. Outstanding job all 6 days.

Race Swag: Excellent! Received all 6 state shaped medals, and a giant 6 Marathons in 6 States in 6 Days Medal and a long sleeve tech shirt for completing the series.

My Performance: I wanted to quit, but I was too far from home. This is the most painful marathon I have ever completed. Glad that I was able to muster the endurance to finish…for a while I thought I may not have it in me.

This series as a whole was excellent, and if you’re looking to cross the New England States off of your 50 States list, this is a good way to do it.

DIFFICULTY
3
PRODUCTION
4
SCENERY
4
SWAG
5
My Media

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Overall Rating: Very good course, not such great performance. Course Difficulty: This one was tough for me, after running the first couple of loops, my shins really started to hurt … MORE

Overall Rating: Very good course, not such great performance.

Course Difficulty: This one was tough for me, after running the first couple of loops, my shins really started to hurt (shin splints), the downhills on this course were super painful. A somewhat steep rolling course.

Course Scenery: Nice. Well manicured golf course and lake.

Race Production: Good, JC and team did a great job.

Race Swag: Good. Nice state shaped medal, and a dry blend t shirt.

My Performance: Not too good, but all in all, happy to still be moving forward on day 7.

DIFFICULTY
4
PRODUCTION
4
SCENERY
3
SWAG
3

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Overall Rating: Really good. Course Difficulty: Not too bad. This was a fairly flat course on a paved park trail and sidewalk. There was one section that I think caused … MORE

Overall Rating: Really good.

Course Difficulty: Not too bad. This was a fairly flat course on a paved park trail and sidewalk. There was one section that I think caused some issues, and that was the asphalt sidewalk that was about a quarter of the course; it was really uneven, and I think it contributed to the shin pain I had the next couple of days.

Course Scenery: Excellent. Beautiful Japanese Garden in the middle of the park made for nice eye candy along the run.

Race Production: Good, JC and team did a great job.

Race Swag: Good. Nice state shaped medal, and a dry blend t shirt.

My Performance: I was pretty pleased for the 6th marathon in as many days. Wasn’t suffering too bad, and had an unexpectedly good finish time.

DIFFICULTY
3
PRODUCTION
4
SCENERY
4
SWAG
3

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Overall Rating: Really good. Course Difficulty: Really challenging. This was my 5th marathon in 5 days, and was a 3.3ish mile loop. We did 2-1 intervals to try and save … MORE

Overall Rating: Really good.

Course Difficulty: Really challenging. This was my 5th marathon in 5 days, and was a 3.3ish mile loop. We did 2-1 intervals to try and save some steam for the rest of the week, but it wore us out anyway. Constantly rolling hills, and a dirt/gravel path. Loving the dirt paths, they are really gentle on the feet.

Course Scenery: Excellent. Good representation of VT and some nice views along the way.

Race Production: Good, JC and team are doing a great job.

Race Swag: Good. Nice state shaped medal, and a dry blend t shirt.

My Performance: Wasn’t sure what to expect, as this was the first time I had done 5 back to back marathons. All in all it was ok. I didn’t push really hard, but I didn’t walk the whole thing either. Definitely a little tender in the knees. (same as yesterday)

Met a friend that I’ve been running with on Monday, and today she got her 50th marathon. JC and crew had a cake, plaque, and balloon waiting for her. Very nice gesture.

DIFFICULTY
4
PRODUCTION
4
SCENERY
3
SWAG
3

1 member marked this review helpful. Agree?

Overall Rating: Excellent. I’m not a huge fan of loop courses, but this one was outstanding. Course Difficulty: Not bad. It was a moderately hilly dirt/cinder trail along the Nashua … MORE

Overall Rating: Excellent. I’m not a huge fan of loop courses, but this one was outstanding.

Course Difficulty: Not bad. It was a moderately hilly dirt/cinder trail along the Nashua river. There were a few land mines (aka rocks and roots) but the majority of the course felt really good underfoot.

Course Scenery: Perfect. Good representation of NH and I was never bored because of the terrain.

Race Production: There was a little confusion at the beginning over the short out and back, but otherwise, flawless. This crew does a really good job with aid stations and accommodating the runners.

Race Swag: Good. Nice state shaped medal, and a dry blend t shirt.

My Performance: Wasn’t sure what to expect, as this was the first time I had done 4 back to back marathons. All in all it was ok. I didn’t push really hard, but I didn’t walk the whole thing either. Definitely a little tender in the knees.

I had a great running friend along the way who kept me going in the low spots. The loop trail length (4.8ish miles) was perfect.

DIFFICULTY
3
PRODUCTION
4
SCENERY
4
SWAG
3

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Overall Rating: Really good. Enjoyed the longer loops (3.5ish miles). Course Difficulty: Flat except for one highway bridge. Pleasant view across a city retention pond. Course Scenery: Not a lot … MORE

Overall Rating: Really good. Enjoyed the longer loops (3.5ish miles).

Course Difficulty: Flat except for one highway bridge. Pleasant view across a city retention pond.

Course Scenery: Not a lot to look at, it a couple of friends and I did see different things every time we went around, so it kept things interesting.

Race Production: Great. Excellent food, and plenty of it at the one aid station. No frills bob pickup and start.

Race Swag: Good. Nice state shaped medal, and a dry blend t shirt.

My Performance: It was ok for the third of 8 in a row. No complaints.

I had initially planned this as a day off, but the RD happened to be running at NY earlier in the week and talked me into it (you other runners know how hard that was). Glad I decided to do it, there is something about taking on an entire Challenge and completing it.

DIFFICULTY
2
PRODUCTION
4
SCENERY
2
SWAG
3

1 member marked this review helpful. Agree?

Overall Rating: Really good, with room to improve. Course Difficulty: constant rolling hills and all paved surfaces. Fairly challenging. Course Scenery: Off the charts. Outstanding! Race Production: You’ll have to … MORE

Overall Rating: Really good, with room to improve.

Course Difficulty: constant rolling hills and all paved surfaces. Fairly challenging.

Course Scenery: Off the charts. Outstanding!

Race Production: You’ll have to decide: no shirt with race purchase, packet pickup was a breeze, lots of pre race info, tracking app that didn’t work for many people on the course, first announcement at the start line was that there would be no aid stations for the first 8 miles, aid stations didn’t really have any type of fuel, aid station volunteers were really good. Some really major issues, but also some gold stars.

Race Swag: Nice medal, but again, no shirt with entry.

My Performance: It was ok. About what I expected for the second day of a double.

A really beautiful course with lots of support. There is room for improvement, but if I needed a check mark by Maine, I would definitely consider this one.

DIFFICULTY
3
PRODUCTION
2
SCENERY
5
SWAG
2

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Overall Rating: Pretty good small race. Course Difficulty: Fairly constant rolling hills and rain for most of this race made this one a little tough. Several folks had a dream … MORE

Overall Rating: Pretty good small race.

Course Difficulty: Fairly constant rolling hills and rain for most of this race made this one a little tough. Several folks had a dream chafe going on, and the others were waiting for it. Without the rain it is probably a 3 out of 5.

Course Scenery: The Hudson valley is a pretty place. After I left, I felt like I had seen the other New York, outside of the big city. It was nice.

Race Production: From my perspective everything was flawless. You knew exactly what was going to happen and when, and then it did.

Race Swag: Good. Decent medal, and a dry blend t shirt.

My Performance: It was fine, once it started raining I went into survival mode so I could get the finish.

Met some new friends along the way who I’d be running with the rest of the week, and an RD who sweet talked me into running all 6 of the New England Challenge Races. Glad he did.

DIFFICULTY
3
PRODUCTION
3
SCENERY
3
SWAG
3

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Overall Rating: Excellent. I wanted a 50 mile ultra, and I got it! Course Difficulty: Pretty tough. I would give the course itself a 6 out of 10 on difficulty, … MORE

Overall Rating: Excellent. I wanted a 50 mile ultra, and I got it!

Course Difficulty: Pretty tough. I would give the course itself a 6 out of 10 on difficulty, as it is constantly rolling hills. I would give the course plus rain a 7 out of 10, as you get the hills, the mud, and sloshing around in wet shoes. I would give the course plus the rain plus the wind plus the temperature an 8 out of ten on the most challenging things I have ever done.

Mostly gravel/dirt roads-as a side note if you plan to run this race, the traffic in this part of the world doesn’t slow down or move over for you. I wasn’t sure if the people didn’t like me, or runners being on the road in general, or if it’s just how people drive in that area…just something to know.

Course Scenery: Nice. I like rural terrain, and this is an epic view of real Kansas.

Race Production: Race production was perfect; everything was exactly as it was supposed to be. Manned aid stations every 9-10 miles, unmanned with water in between. Great volunteers who endured rough weather with smiles and a helpful attitude. Chili to eat at the end. Free pics. Excellent production!

Race Swag: Awesome race specific buckle (even for the marathon) and a sweet cotton poly blend shirt.

My Performance: I wasn’t sure what to expect, as this was my first 50 miler. My overall plan was to finish in under 10 hours, but I would be happy with a finish. I finished my first loop feeling good at about 4:40, so all was going as planned; the second loop is where things got tough.
It had rained all morning, not hard, but enough that I was soaked, I had a drop bag at mile 35, ten miles up the road, so I thought maybe once it quit raining I would change. Then came the hard rain and wind.
Long story short, by mile 35 my lips had turned blue, and fingers had started to turn blue…I was shivering uncontrollably, and thought I was going to have to drop. Chris (crewing) and Melanie (fellow runner), both my new heroes, saved my race. They gave me some boiled potatoes, a poncho, some hand warmers, and latex gloves; I put all of this on with a couple more layers of dry clothes and off I went.
I ended up walking about 15 total miles, and still finished right at 11 hours…I’m totally good with that.

I can’t ever say enough good things about my fellow runners, especially in ultras; it’s a community that goes way deeper than any event, and I am extremely grateful.

All in all, this race on a bad day is still a good memory, this race on a good day would be one of the best I have participated in. Really enjoyed it.

DIFFICULTY
4
PRODUCTION
5
SCENERY
3
SWAG
4

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Overall Rating: I would rate this one above average. Course Difficulty: Easy-squeezy. Rail trail with low grade hills and crushed limestone surface that was really soft on the feet. It … MORE

Overall Rating: I would rate this one above average.

Course Difficulty: Easy-squeezy. Rail trail with low grade hills and crushed limestone surface that was really soft on the feet. It was an out and back and the 15 miles back in gave us 20mph sustained headwinds (ouch).

Course Scenery: Not really. It would probably be prettier in the late spring early summer, or if the sun was out, or if the wind wasn’t screaming (lol). I’m sure there are prettier places in Kansas.

Race Production: Race production was outstanding; no surprises at all-everything was exactly as it was supposed to be. Manned and unbelievably well stocked aid stations every 4-5 miles, unmanned with water in between. Super friendly volunteers who had obviously run before. Tons of good food at the pre-race and post-race meals. Free pics. Really good production!

Race Swag: Awesome Kansas shaped buckle (even for the 50k) and a sweet cotton poly blend shirt.

My Performance: I got to ring the PR bell on this one. I could have finished a little quicker than I did, but I came across a young guy (17) who was struggling a little, and turned out to be great company. He pushed me on my speed walking, and I kept him going for about the last 9 miles (for me the camaraderie is worth much more than a better finish time).

I wanted to complete another 50k before my 50 miler in April, and was previewing this course for a 100miler later in the year. It was a very good race with good people. If you’re into no frills and no surprises, this is your race. If you like big crowds, busy expo’s, and tons of epic scenery, you should prob look somewhere else. I personally loved this race!

DIFFICULTY
3
PRODUCTION
4
SCENERY
2
SWAG
5
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Overall Rating: Race production was good. Trail running is a different animal and a different crowd with different expectations, so...they didn't have the size shirt I ordered (bad), the race … MORE

Overall Rating: Race production was good. Trail running is a different animal and a different crowd with different expectations, so…they didn’t have the size shirt I ordered (bad), the race started right on time and was well marked (good), fed my wife and two of my kids after the race (great), aid stations were a long way between (normal), packet pickup was extremely easy (good). All in all more good than bad.

Course Difficulty: Rolling hills with lots of little land mines, a few water spots to cross (your feet will get wet), some wooden planks to traverse, some sand to run on.

Course Scenery: It was decent. A lot of running through previously prescribed burns, pine forests, along a river, and through marshes. I definitely didn’t get bored because there was nothing to look at.

Race Production: Good. Aid station were about 4-5 miles between, but were well stocked, and had great people working them.

Race Swag: Woodallions were not bad, but I always prefer metal (just personal preference), and as I mentioned earlier, they didn’t have the size shirt I ordered…bummer.

My Performance: This was a hard run. It was advertised as a good entry trail ultra, but in my experience, it was quite a bit beyond that. I suspect the weather (lots of previous rain) and the 80+ degree weather and high humidity had a lot to do with it.

DIFFICULTY
4
PRODUCTION
3
SCENERY
4
SWAG
1

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Overall Rating: Good production. Nice trail along the river. Everything was as expected. Course Difficulty: It was really flat, with one big hill in the middle, which on a double … MORE

Overall Rating: Good production. Nice trail along the river. Everything was as expected.

Course Difficulty: It was really flat, with one big hill in the middle, which on a double loop, we covered twice.

Course Scenery: Some was nice, other was oil refinery’s and factories. None of it was bad, but there were a couple of areas that were better just because we were looking out over the river.

Race Production: Good. 25k and 50k started well before the other races, so no real overlap. Aid stations were where they were supposed to be, and course was well marked. Food at the end was awesome. There weren’t enough porta-jons, but are there ever?? One nice bathroom about 4 miles in, so we passed it 4 times. Packet pickup was a breeze.

Race Swag: Good medal and nice long sleeve tech shirt.

My Performance: It was ok. I finished a lot slower than I thought, but mostly because we were fighting a 20 mph headwind for half of the race-blah…so I think I walked about 6-8 miles of this one.

If you are looking for a 50k, but aren’t ready to wade across creeks or go mudding, this one will do. I think there are probably better paved 50k’s out there, but for a super low price, on this weekend in Jan-it would be tough to beat.

DIFFICULTY
2
PRODUCTION
4
SCENERY
3
SWAG
3

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Overall Rating: Very good production. Nice trail along the river. Volunteer support was outstanding. Course Difficulty: I'm not sure how to rate this. The trail seemed very easy "aka flat", … MORE

Overall Rating: Very good production. Nice trail along the river. Volunteer support was outstanding.

Course Difficulty: I’m not sure how to rate this. The trail seemed very easy “aka flat”, but by the time I finished I was worn out, and fairly slow “ish”. So…the trail was great and didn’t seem difficult, but I wouldn’t go in expecting a PR.

Course Scenery: Really nice. I took the 5am early start, so I was running toward Little Rock while the city was lit up for Christmas, which was quite nice. I think the trail portion itself would be much prettier with foliage on the trees, but no complaints here. The entire trail followed the river which was great. Very nice scenery.

Race Production: Good. I was running toward the front of the early pack, and at one time around mile 9 that we thought we were lost…we weren’t…but we did have to take some time to pull up maps on the iphone to be sure. There were several other runners who I passed on the way back who asked if they were going the right direction, so I know this was a weak area for the production team. Not enough for me to ding the production for it though, because we weren’t actually lost. They also had a heated tent at the start/finish line that was the best I have been in…excellent. When I finished the race, there were no other runners around, so I walked over to the shuttle and asked how long until I could get a ride back up the hill…the driver replied “we’re here for you, honey, I can take you now if you’re ready”…so, I got a solo ride in the shuttle bus-Outstanding.

Race Swag: Good medal and nice long sleeve tech shirt. They also offered previous year(s) long sleeve shirts for $5, so I bought a couple.

My Performance: It was ok. I was the first one to cross the finish line, and came in first of the early starters, which was good, overall still finished dead center in the pack, I am the true definition of average…oh well, someone has to be in the middle. If you’re looking for a midwest run in December, I can give this one my stamp of approval.

DIFFICULTY
3
PRODUCTION
4
SCENERY
4
SWAG
3

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