The NY Times Love for The Barkley Marathons

Two things you might not put together, The New York Times and The Barkley Marathons, happily married this morning when the esteemed paper did an extensive article on The Barkley Marathons which is more of a recluse, as far as races go, than the late Howard Hughes was back in the early 70’s.

It’s a nice piece that delves into the history of the race and gives facts and winners that less than five people in the world probably knew beforehand.

It rightfully gives Gary Cantrell ‘Lazarus Lake’ the credit he deserves for the tough and challenging races he conjures up in his sick brain.

Here is how Dave Seminara of the Times described the race:

It is a 100-mile footrace that some say is actually 130 miles or more, through unmarked trails with names like Meth Lab Hill, Bad Thing and Leonard’s Buttslide that are choked with prickly saw briars. Temperatures often range from freezing to blistering on the same day, and there is a cumulative elevation gain of more than 60,000 feet, or the equivalent of climbing Mount Everest twice from sea level.

A 60-hour time limit forces runners to run, climb and bushwhack for three days with little or no sleep. They endure taunts from the race director, who deliberately keeps the competition’s entry procedure a mystery. It is a race in which there are no comfort stations and runners cannot use a GPS device or a cellphone.

Less than 2 percent of the nearly 800 ultrarunners who have subjected themselves to this punishment — 12 men, the same number as have walked on the moon — have finished the race in its current iteration. The only prize is that after 100 miles, they get to stop.

This is the Barkley Marathons, the world’s toughest and most secretive trail race.

Read the Full Article HERE. It’s a great piece that gives ultrarunning some of it’s much needed props. Not that Barkley is per se a ‘running’ race, but it is one of Satan’s most cherished events on Earth.

The race takes place every spring in Tennessee.

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This post was written by:

- who has written 1052 posts on Run It Fast®.

Joshua Holmes has completed 197 marathons/ultramarathons while running 100+ miles 43 including races such as the Badwater 135, Western States 100, The Last Annual Vol State 500K (3x). His favorite races to date are the Vol State 500K, Badwater 135, Barkley Fall Classic, Catalina Eco Marathon, Chimera 100, Across The Years, Savage Gulf Trail Marathon, Strolling Jim 40 Miler, Tunnel Hill 100, RUTS, EC100 and the Flying Monkey Marathon in his home state of Tennessee. Follow @bayou Follow @joshuaholmes on Instagram

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