I've finished Sawtooth in 2009, so its not fear of the unknown, it's fear of the KNOWN. I know how much this race can hurt and how long the hurt lasts.
Every 100 miler comes with long stretches where you are trapped in your head and there's some "conversations" in there that center on whether it might be nicer to just lie down awhile. The problem with Sawtooth is you tend to have an extra 9 or 10 hours of conversation. I managed to finish Kettle 100 in 2009 with a time of 19:49. Later that year, Superior 100 took over 28 hours ... And I finished third. That is a LOT of extra time to be out there. Consider at Kettle that I was done by 2am. Superior took me past noon the next day. Ouch.
After a one year absence, I'm signed up again (This is the excitement part!). Apparently there is some selective amnesia after enough time passes. We have a pretty big LPTR group heading up this year and it should be a BLAST!! My wife is taking the trip up with me as it turns out our anniversary is that weekend (how cool is she!??!) As I wait for the time to tick away, I have taken to searching for past Sawtooth race reports to temper my enthusiasm... Check out the links below the excerpts...Enjoy!!
“This next section out of Crosby was just nasty - I don't know any other way to describe this 9.4 miles. There were lots of rocky walls to scale, steep ups/downs, and it took forever! I felt like I was stuck in the twilight zone here.”
“This course is a trail runner's course and the race is a trail runner's race. I cannot think of many point to point courses that are entirely on trail and offer such challenging terrain. If you enjoy vanilla races, this is not for you. The beauty of the Superior Hiking Trail will leave an indelible imprint on your soul and the technical terrain will leave you with a few bruises. If you are looking for a predictable course, this isn't for you either.”