Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Wild Duluth100K - Brad's Race Report

What Brad doesn't mention in his report is that he ran the Glacial 50 mile the previous weekend as well as tearing up the Black-Loop at Lapham with a 52 minute loop on the wednesday before Wild Duluth... animal.

...Once upon a time 16 hearty souls started 6:00 a.m. Saturday morning for the 1st annual Wild Duluth 100 K. The weather was cool but not really cold. Comfortable while running. I figured that because the race was so small it was going to be full day of alone time. I figured wrong. From the start there was a group of 5 that stuck together though the first 8 miles or so. Long enough for Julie to get their life history. But because we are so bad with names we referred to them as sweatshirt guy, Florida guy and North Dakota guy, then myself and Julie. (Of coarse we didn’t call them that to their faces).

For whatever reason I had to be the one to lead this pack through the woods. Maybe it was because when Florida guys finally got off my heels and sped up he would be coming back up the trail with his hands in the air wondering where the trail was. Or maybe it was because after one of the aid stations we left before North Dakota guy, only to find him ahead of us looking for the right trail. Sorry saps must have thought I knew what I was doing. Whatever the reason it was nice to have the company.

The race started right in town. We actually ran through city streets to catch the Superior Hiking Trail. It was crazy because we would be running on some technical single track and come out into a neighborhood, run down the street and get back on the trail again. It was like this for the first 4-5 miles until after a lot of climbing we came out to a clearing to have an unbelievable view of the city, lit up like gigantic christmas tree.

Sweatshirt guy was oozing newbie. Running with his hooded sweatshirt, white cotton socks, long basketball shorts and running in the dark without a light, he was the first to drop off. We saw him later in the race running and talking on his cell phone. Maybe a call to his buddy to bring him a flash light for later use.

Somewhere before the 20 mile aid station Julie decided to scare the crap out of me by falling down hard in front of me and nearly

rearranging her face on a huge rock. She pretended to be doing some push-ups, laughed and got up. After scolding her to not do that again we were on our way. Of course stepping aside so I could get in front.

The sections from the 20 mile aid station to the turnaround were beautiful. Very runable and fast trail. Because of this I decided to try and pick up the pace. Was feeling good so why not. This meant it was my turn to go down hard. Only it wasn’t my face about to get rearranged, it was my right shoulder that came, lets say unattached. Again! Me and my right shoulder have a history of becoming dislocated. I’ll spare the details of the site and sounds. Well because my arm was stuck in an outward and up position, Florida guy, who was still on my heels, thought my arm was up asking to be helped up and decided to reach for it. After a quick NO, NO, NO, DON’T TOUCH MY ARM! I was able to get up and put it back into place. So after my surge and sudden stop the four of use were together again. Florida guy, North Dakota guy, me and Julie.

The aid station at 26 miles is where Florida guy decided to call it a day. Claiming some knee pains. Then there was 3. Julie, myself and North Dakota guy. This section to the turnaround was still very runable and we had a good pace going.

Halfway point and we were still feeling good. Aside from the fact that I couldn’t get my pack off because I couldn’t move my arm. Some help from the friendly volunteers, we were fueled up and on our way. Shortly after the turnaround North Dakota guy said that he was going to slow down and try to catch up on his electrolytes. Then there was 2.

The way back went well. Kept fueled up, ate at every aid station. Even Julie who usually goes 100 miles on a pretzel and a bottle of water. Coming back into the rocky sections became a bit uncomfortable when we literally had to climb up some rocks.

The mile 45 aid station is where we picked up our lights for those final miles. We still had some daylight left so we kept moving to get as close as possible without lights. Coming out of the woods and into some neighborhoods again meant we were getting close. I’m not much of a big city guy but when I saw the city lights of Duluth it was a beautiful sight. Just a couple of odd things on those last couple of sections. All the deer we saw was at night, closer to town and not out away from town. A bunch of them even scattered when we came out to a clearing over looking the city. Must have been a deer inspiration point. Watching the submarine races you know. Then there was that kid wearing camo and carrying a bow and arrow in the dark with no light. Okay whatever.

The celebrating started when we finally came out of the woods and onto the city streets back to the park and the finish line. A look back to make sure know one was coming from behind and we were there. 100K in 14hrs 45mins in 4th and 5th place. With Julie taking top spot for the women.

Andy and Kim Holak were great hosts along with the volunteers. Yet another one to add to the must do list. Damn that list is getting long. O’well, do it while you can, I say.

Just keep moving.


P.S. There was also a 50K going on, but I don’t know what went on with that one. Other than Wynn Davis winning in a sick time of 4:11.

Results at: http://wildduluthraces.wordpress.com/results/

photos by Zach Pierce of course!!


  1. Congrats on a great run, Brad and Julie. Way to represent LPTR!

  2. Glacial and Wild Duluth back-to-back is just sick! Impressive runs, Brad and Julie! Dare i mention that, if the LPTR members had joined the fab 5 Fifties race series, you might've swept the awards?