Leadville 100 – Winfield Aid Station
As is becoming the norm with a lot of 100 mile races, the one I’m doing requires that each entrant do at least 8 hours of trail work or volunteer at another race. With this in mind, I signed up to work at the Leadville 100 race which is held in the mountains a couple of hours from our house. Malcolm and I made a camping trip out of it and stayed just outside of Leadville the night before the race. I got up at 4:20 in the morning and watched as 580 runners went by with headlamps and flashlights (our campsite was near mile 3 of the race course). It was quite a sight!
We made it out to our assigned station at 9:00 in the morning. This was the 50 mile turnaround point of the race (out-and-back course), and was a VERY busy location. I spent most of the day directing vehicles to parking spots in a clearing, and Malcolm worked inside the aid tent handing out cups of soda. It was a long, tiring day – but very rewarding. The location was beautiful and the people we worked with were great.
It gave me a whole new appreciation for what goes on behind the scenes during a race like this. I also was amazed at how people handled having 50 miles behind them with 50 more to go. Some were zombies, some focused, some in pain, some happy and cheerful, others were grumpy. I’ve been all of that and more…
It’s a tough race, with altitude, weather, and tough cutoff times. Out of the 580 starters, there would only be 210 finishers.
See some photos here.