This is an extremely difficult race report to write. I was so looking forward to racing again and completing the WY Range 100, so to not finish is disappointing. But I know that I chose a challenging race that lived up to that description. Besides, I don’t do easy things, so failure (or should I be more positive and so not meeting my goals) is bound to happen. I did everything I could to finish, it just wasn’t in the cards for this race.
First, a bit about WY Range 100. I found out about this first-year race in early 2020 through Caleb, who is the High Lonesome RD, as well as the Buffalo Run RD, Jim Skaggs. They were both signed up for it, and it sounded amazing. 103 miles, with approximately 30k of climbing through the Bridger-Tetons, just south of Jackson Hole, WY, sounded just like my type of race. After Hellbender was cancelled, I signed up hoping that by August, the events of 2020 would be past. Boy, was I wrong. The race was on in early July, however, 2 weeks later, they canceled due to lack of key volunteers given the continued restrictions due to the pandemic. This was a remote race and having aid station volunteers who were experienced, is a critical factor. So, I decided to defer my entry to this year.
About the course itself: it is designed to be a point to point, starting at a trailhead west of Big Piney WY and finishes in Hoback, WY. The race runs along the WY Range National Trail, which unfortunately, isn’t traveled heavily. There were going to be areas where we’d be traveling flag to flag to find our way. In addition, it started at noon on the 20th, with only 2 cut-offs, 24 hours at the 53-mile point and 48 hours to the finish. I figured it was going to take me between 36-40 hours, but realistically closer to the 40 hours.
The original elevation profile:
Fast forward a year…I had a couple of setbacks due to injuries in the fall and spring, but nothing that kept me out too long, just some niggles that I wanted to let heal. I put in some good training blocks over the summer, to include an overnight 50k sweep section at High Lonesome three weeks prior. The only stumble was that on the last big run, two weeks prior, I took a nasty fall and broke a finger. This was going to make the golf part of our vacation more challenging, as well as holding poles for climbing.