Sunday, April 12, 2009

Zumbro 100

Perfect weather greeted the 13 starters of the inaugural Zumbro Bottoms 100 near Wabasha MN.  Sunny skies and low 50's was more than race director Larry Pederson could have hoped for.  

Building off his experience as the director of the Superior Sawtooth 100, Pederson assembled this early season 100 miler on a challenging  course featuring lots of steep climbs and wicked descents.  Loose rocks and sandy soil tormented the runners as they completed 5 laps of the 20 mile loop with a 34 hour time limit.  

My brother, Steve Grabowski, set this race as his first attempt at 100 miles.  His goal:  Finish a 100 miler under the time limit this year to qualify for next year's Arrowhead 135.  (the Grabowski's have never been that bright...) 

The eight AM start time ensured everyone would get a full night on the trails - (A theme repeated with the Midnight start of the 100K).  

Steve knocked out the first 71 miles without much incident using a steady comfortable pace and diligent calorie intake and hydration.   He had one rough patch shortly after this point as the temperatures dropped to the upper teens and he got behind on his food and water.  Shivering and nauseous, Steve didn't panic.  He took extra time at the next aid-station to sit down and re-group.  The aid-station volunteers were incredible, helping him to get warm and reset his system. 

 Rehydrated and recharged, Steve  set about grinding out the last 30+ miles.  His biggest challenge ended up being his feet, which were blister free, but aching from the beating delivered by the rocky trail. 

He still managed to alternate running and power-walking the entire way, finishing it off right around 30 hours and 20 minutes.  Mission Accomplished - Congratulations Steve!

A link to his race report ...


  1. Just found your blog from a another 100 mile finisher - congrats to your brother Steve! I swept the course so I missed most of the people coming in, but the course was much tougher than I anticipated. I was expecting Afton Take 2, but this was closer to Son of Superior.

    Your first picture seems to accurately portray the steep rocky sections. Can't wait to hear Steve's race report.

  2. Great job Steve. Sounds like you picked a tough race for your first100. I hope your recovery goes well.


  3. I thought Steve was a goner when I saw him sitting at the aid station; I have to think that your being there helped get him back into the race. And Arrowhead won't have all the rocks to tend with, so his feet should be fine.