In 2012 we will be running our current course which has changed some from the first course change for the 2006 race, when the town of Urique offered sponsorship and wanted to witness the race. In 2010 we added another 3+ miles and 1800 feet of climb to make the run more interesting and a real 50 miler-:]
In an effort to get more runners to come down to run with us, and also allow for a quality experience for spectators, we have eliminated the previous, pre 2005 EXTREME element of this run, which was a hard, very gnarly, potentially dangerous point-to-point, 30 mile canyon-to-canyon run. I will still be offering this hike to back-packers, fast-packers, and runners, on private trips. No racing please!
The run will now be on a combination dirt road and single track trail beginning and ending in the plaza of the old town of Urique, running on rolling dirt road up and down the Urique river with diversions on single track trail up and down beautiful, lush arroyos [side canyons].
The race will consist of a 21+ mile loop up-river, followed by another 18+ mile loop down-river, then continue up-river again on rough dirt road on another 10+ mile total out and back to the Tarahumara village of Guadalupe Coronado, before ending in the plaza of the town of Urique.
The Ultra Marathon version of the race will be about 50+ miles. There will be the shorter 21 and 18 mile options and the 40 miler as well for those of us who may want a little less challenge-:]. Anybody who enters is welcome to run an even shorter version with us.
With this format, runners and spectators will have the opportunity to see the progress of the race as it unfolds, and the run will be much safer and easier to manage aid stations, with better access to emergency vehicles, etc.
The two separate extended trail sections will be beautiful, rolling single track, each climbing considerably [2,500+ feet and 1500 feet,] then descending the same, back to what would be considered unimproved dirt-road, beginning and ending in the town plaza of the deep canyon town of Urique, where we will meet in the evening for the awards presentation. The estimated total climb is 9,300 feet with equal descent.
The turn-around points will be the Tarahumara village of Guadalupe Coronado, up-river; then back a few miles across the river to a bridge, cross the river and diverting a few miles up the lush arroyo Mescalera on another dirt road leading to lovely single-track trail and up to another smaller suspension bridge, then climbing another 1800 feet in a couple of miles to the beautiful mountain mesa Naranjo--a lush settlement with awesome views-- before looping back to the town plaza of Urique; then following the dirt road down-river for about 6 miles to a sturdy steel suspension bridge that crosses the river, running single-track to an arroyo, then cross-country up a rocky arroyo with minimal trail until spotting the beautiful dirt trail leading up another 3 miles or so to the lovely rancho "Los Alisos", where sweet, vine-ripened grapefruit abounds!
Runners will check in at Los Alisos, which will have radio contact to
Urique, take aid and return on the trail to the river where they will
cross and run back up-river to Urique at the 40 mile mark, take more
aid, and continue 5+ miles to the mission on the far end of the
village of Guadalupe Coronado again, returning on what could at this
point be some pretty good "death" hills, to the cheering finish of the
race in the plaza of Urique. Cerveza, Comida y Fiesta!!!