What Would Bill Bowerman Say?

With the cancellation of Ultra Trail Du Mt Blanc (UTMB) just this past weekend, that makes at least three mountain ultras in the past year canceled mid-race due to bad weather.  Chimera 100 mile 8 hours into the race, Pocatello 50 miler 17 miles in, and now UTMB 3 hours into the race.  Being an Oregonian, I can’t help but think of the following Bill Bowerman quote:

There’s no such thing as bad weather, just soft people.

What the heck is going on with canceling races due to bad weather?  Are we race directors ill-prepared?  Are runners ill-prepared?  Are we being overly cautious?  Are we just allowing anybody to run our races, including those that have no idea how to take care of themselves in the mountains and thus RDs are forced to cancel due to liability concerns?  Are we canceling because of volunteers?  Do we not understand that it snows, rains, blows, hails, etc. in the mountains and that is just part of the challenge?

Fires are a completely different beast as the permitting agency tells us we can’t have our event.  It is not subjective.  But wind and rain?  Totally subjective.  What’s going on?


  1. Great post! And, I think I know what Bowerman would say. I was not at UTMB or Chimera but I was at Pocatello. The weather there was brutal but I know I was bummed when they canceled it. I had spent the hour leading up the cancellation strategizing about how I would finish the thing and then the plug was pulled. I know why they did it but it would have been a great race to finish. I have to say, I think we’re getting soft.

  2. Hmmm. At Pocatello there was already a search and rescue on the first ridge, and the RDs made a call to not let the runners continue onto the 3rd and final climb which was the highest, already had considerable snow accumulation, and for which the markers would have likely been hidden. True, most runners were not adequately prepared for blizzard conditions, but as an RD, I would vote for safety of the runners.

    • @Amy, I wasn’t at Pocatello but I talked with a runner afterwards that was in a big party of runners that got lost. They actually grouped together and got themselves out. That was good. Runners not being adequately prepared – not good.

      • @Craig, yes, but the RDs didn’t know at the time that they had merry little bands of lost runners joining into packs for survival. what they knew was that they had a number of lost runners on ridge #1. when you’ve got 10 or so people lost up on frozen ridge line #1, you don’t send the rest of the runners on up to ridge #3 that is guaranteed to have more extreme conditions (quite a bit higher in elevation and existing snow pack), likely have markers buried under snow, causing another lost bunch of runners and a completely separate search and rescue effort.

          • @Craig, blame that one on the RDs? the first big climb was a bush whack up the side of a mountain. last year it was apparently ‘fun’ but add in blowing snail and tiny pink ribbons tied closed to the ground and it gets kind of hard to stay on ‘trail’. when you’re not on a trail and you can’t see the markers it’s really easy to get lost. the lost runners could have been more warmly dressed, and maybe some of them were, but they would still have been lost and in need of finding.

            i was surprised the forest service approved a course that went off trail for reasons other than lost runners in blowing snow.

  3. I believe he was track and field coach? Meaning, bad weather wouldn’t kill any of his runners, most likely? I am all for “weathering” while racing. After all, I faced whiteouts in the mountains, liightening at 13,000 feet pass in the middle of the night with freezing rain and hail, temps below -50F with wind chill…but I wouldn’t want to be an RD responsible for making a decision for others. Yes, the acceptance to the races is rather soft standard wridden, and many come unprepared, and that’s why RD faces tough decision. Nobody wants to live and think “I might have killed someone”.

    • @olga, “but I wouldn’t want to be an RD responsible for making a decision for others” – That’s exactly what these RDs did. They made a decision to stop their race for all racers, and that’s unfortunate for everybody.

      This reminds me when my brother and I tried to climb El Cap in Yosemite. It took us 3 or 4 tries (I can’t remember exactly). First couple attempts we were easily persuaded to bail early because “the weather looks bad.” Didn’t take much for a couple of scared sport climbers to convince ourselves that because there were a few clouds and rain drops that we were in for some serious weather so we retreated. Of course, the weather was fine for many days afterwards and we were kicking ourselves. Last attempt we had better resolve (and were better prepared mentally and with gear) and we withstood a 24 hour rain delay less than 1000′ up. Then we withstood another 17 hour rain delay higher up. We reached the summit after 4 1/2 days of climbing (and sitting under a tarp on a portaledge).

      • @Craig, I agree, that did make the decision for others. But it is a safer one than the opposite. As I said, I’d be just petrified knowing my ideas of what “prepared” means caused someone to loose life. I was out of my mind enough when Hood front runners went without water for 20 miles, even though it wouldn’t have caused death (I sure hoped). Still blame myself for being “unprepared” for an external forced delay. So, Pocatello cancelled mostly (in my mind) not due to snow and wind per se, but due to lost markings on the ground under snow and possibility of runners getting lost in the remote mountains. Like myself, had they “foreseen” the cituation, they would try and put marking high off on sticks? May be next year. Can’t say much for Chimera, really. As for UTMB, just way too many people, and frankly, I don’t know acceptance rules, so not sure how ready the runners (or race organizers for that matter).
        But I do remember being pissed at Chicago (was it the one?) marathon stopped due to heat and not enough water. A sure thing this was because a bunch of “off the street” folks decided they can do a marathon, RD’s didn’t supply water, and everybody was afraid of a law deal. This particular (I believe there were a few more) cancellation does show the sport of distance running had become of much “pussying out”. Nobody trains, but everybody thinks they can check it off their bucket list. If Oprah can do it…

  4. Olga can speak for herself, but I suspect she meant that she wouldn’t want to be a RD responsible for making a decision that ends up killing someone. I understand and even agree (to a certain extent) with idea that a participant in a mountain race should be prepared for a lot of things, including nasty weather. But there’s a limit to that. Folks generally enter a race because they want to cover ground as fast as they can, not because they want to gear up for an expedition. I’m a big fan of personal responsibility, but once a RD cashes a check, he or she assumes a measure of responsibility too. You know that as well as anyone. If that wasn’t the case, why have medical aid at race? Or search and rescue? I’m sure each of the RD’s at the races you mention had no desire to deprive any of their runners a chance to finish. They just had less desire to see anyone (runners, volunteers) get seriously hurt, or worse. There’s nothing soft about that.

    • @Miles, Wow, that’s a lot of responsibility on the RD. The RD has to draw the line in the sand when the weather is too bad to continue? That is surely not going to be the correct decision for everybody. What one RD thinks is prudent there are surely to be runners that think it is “soft.” If the RD doesn’t think the weather is bad enough to cancel yet a runner dies due to hypothermia, the RD is at fault? Ouch. I’m a little concerned about the precedent that is being set. Seems like this is placing more liability on the RD and less on the runner. If that is where we are headed then races are going to get canceled more and more.

      • @Craig, Craig, thanks for the opportunity to hash this issue out. If the RD doesn’t draw the line in the sand when the weather is too bad to continue his or her race, who does? Let’s leave aside runners for a moment. Certainly if the weather (or some other factor) becomes too dangerous, the RD has to cancel an event for the safety of the volunteers, if nothing else. There has to be a line somewhere, right? Personally, I’d rather face the wrath of some tough-ass mountain runners than deal with someone dying on the course. If a runner dies due to hypothermia when the weather goes to hell, is that the RD’s fault? Of course not. But to absolve the RD of all responsibility isn’t right either. When conditions change drastically and unexpectedly, and the risk to runners and others out on the course rises significantly, if then the ability (if not the duty) to mitigate that danger lies with the RD, especially when runners and volunteers might not have that ability any longer. The point is, each RD has to make that call and I’m not sure it’s fair to second guess anyone for drawing that line in the sand. Now, Olga’s example of the Chicago Marathon fiasco, well, that’s a whole ‘nuther story…

        • @Miles, Are you a lawyer? Maybe we need to understand the RD’s motivation for stopping the race. Is it for the safety of the volunteers and/or runners or is it to avoid potential litigation? Are they the same thing?

          We have been advised by more than one lawyer that if a race adopts a policy of “pulling” runners for medical reasons instead of letting the runners decide when they should stop, the race is actually increasing their exposure. The expectation is set that the race will determine if a runner is capable of continuing or not. All sounds good and well, but the problem lies in the one that gets through the filter and dies. The family then points to all the other runners that got pulled and question why they didn’t pull their loved one.

          Now, if the motivation is purely altruistic …

          • @Craig, I think “shyster” is the more popular term. And, yes, I am one (although I’m a defense lawyer). If I’m directing a race where things fall apart and I have to cancel, I’m doing it purely for safety, not because of the threat of litigation. After all, when it comes to being a litigation target, trail races aren’t exactly BP. And if I’ve purchased some sort of liability policy for the event, I’m even less concerned about my exposure. Your scenario about failing to pull someone for medical reasons is an interesting one. I think Olga is absolutely right – it’s about expectations. For example, you take on the responsibility of setting up medical checkpoints, then you better do your best to fulfill that responsibility. Doesn’t exactly make the RD a guarantor of the runner’s health, but it doesn’t allow them to be a neutral bystander either. Fortunately, there are plenty of races out there that run the spectrum. Want to travel light and focus on speed? Sign up for Rocky Raccoon. Want to be a little more self-sufficient & old school, sign up for Cactus Rose (to name a couple close to home). As long as the RD makes clear what’s being offered and what isn’t, the runner should be able to assess what’s expected of them. As for altruism, I like to think that the race directors of the events you’ve listed acted for altruistic reasons (at least in part). Of course, UTMB is French, and it’s probably wise not to try to figure out any reasons for their decision. They may have cancelled it because they simply felt like it. Who knows. They’re French…

  5. I’ve discussed this, ad nauseum, with Olga since P50 was cancelled this year. It’s a tough balance for the RD. I’m with Andy that, as a whole, we’ve become soft. Having personally spent a good amount of time in the backcountry (running, backpacking, hiking, mountaineering) in brutal conditions has been invaluable. Many participants’ only backcountry mountain experience is during an actual race where they’re dependent on aid stations, course markings, et al. In essence, the runner is being coddled. Not to say those are the basics of putting on a race, but the runner may rely on those things as a false sense of security that can offset their lack of self-reliance if conditions become poor. Nonetheless, the RD has to take the inexperienced participants (lowest common demoninator, if you will) into consideration when basing a decision to continue a race. But, that still makes it difficult to accept as a runner. I know if Bear were to be cancelled next month while I was on the course, I wouldn’t be pleased. As as race participant, I want to be the one responsible for making the decision on whether, or not, to continue due to course conditions.

      • I’m not sure it can be raised. Don’t most races, basically, accept anybody who signs up as long as the runner meets the qualifying standards, which, in many cases, is fairly easy? Even, the one down in your Ma’s ‘hood. Not that I’m dissing that race because I will be entering the lottery this fall for the 3rd time (woulda been 4 if it wasn’t for 2008) and still no dice. But, I digress. I know HR has a qualifying mountain 100 standard and that does raise the bar some, but I think the course, essentially, takes care of the rest. I have all the respect in the world for you RD’s.

  6. In tune with spoken here, the fact is, the race is an organized event. And while we may whine that we (some) are getting softer, when we (some( sign up for an organized event, no matter what is written in the form where we sign at the dotted line, we expect organization. Meaning, the course shall be marked (unless it is, indeed, Barkley, or Plain, but it states as such an unmarked course, and obviously not many attempt). The aid stations shall be at certain points as promised (6 miles or 12 miles, BUT where promised). AS’s have got to have what advertised (whether it is only water, or the hwole shi-bang, whatever IS promised has to be there). Whether-wise, yes, runners shall look at the internet predictions and plan accordingly. Each of those things you and I (and Larry) mentioned in battling conditions, we were only responsible for ourselves. RD’s, even having papers signed on the dotted line and officially off being blamed for mishaps of person’s unpreparedness, will have to deal with their own soul for the rest of thier lives. Speaking of medical, if we go further, why weighing at AS’s and “look into the eye and see if the soul separates from the body” crap? If we are to believe they come prepared, kick ’em all out of AS, don’t let them sit, time is clicking, ale-ale! Craig, trust me, I’d be the one kicking each one I see out. I do think there are more sissies (or safe people) these days. We watched a movie about World War II and occupation of Belarus by Nazi, and what Soviet people went through, women, kids and old. And how they fought (those kids, women, and old) while living in the midst of the forest, in the winter, under ground, with not nearly enough food or water, starving, sick, weak, injured. OK, I went too far…How do we raise the loswest denominator? Means all RD’s get together (online, I guess) and commit to NOT provide MORE than promised, because now MORE is expected. Is it possible? Nah, because we want “everybody to embrace the difficulties of ultrarunning and raise self-esteem for each”. Like in schools, “everybody gets a trophy”, everyone is a winner. 21st century. Sadly, no stepping back.
    The only thing that IS possible, is doing for yourself what you think is dignity and integrity.
    And I am off my chair:) Just a touchy subject.

  7. @ Miles. Your comment about “The French” reminds me of one other group who make decisions I don’t understand for reasons that make no sense to me. That group? Lawyers.

    While that’s not the subject at hand, let’s keep the generalizations about folks at a minimum.

    So let me ask you all something. If a runner is registered for an event. His check has been cashed, his volunteerism fee is paid, and he spends time doing a long run over the weekend on the course and gets lost, or get’s trapped by weather, or chokes on a shower curtain, or possibly DIES is the race liable for that because they didn’t give him adequate warning about training in bad weather? So your reasoning is the liability only is in place during the event? Attaching a race number and putting up aid stations excludes you from using common sense that you would otherwise employ during a training run?

    Isn’t a certain assumption of risk in place during events as well? To think otherwise is an irresponsible illusion.

    Just sayin…

  8. @MonkeyBoy, Where exactly in any of the above comments posted did anyone at anytime suggest that people shouldn’t use common sense? Where exactly in any of the above comments did anyone at anytime suggest race directors have or should have complete liability for race participants. Come on, man. Seriously. Do you actually not understand the difference in what some of the posters are saying and the ridiculous examples you’re putting forward? A little reading comprehension goes a long way in maintaining an interesting and informative back-and-forth dialogue. If you want to flame and be unreasonable and pose ridiculous suggestions that are tangential at best to the discussion, there’s always Letsrun.com

  9. @Chris; let’s see.

    Amy said “True, most runners were not adequately prepared for blizzard conditions” Some interpretations could suggest that this was a lack of common sense in heading into a race in Northern Idaho being unprepared. Especially when the race website clearly has a section under Race Info that speaks to weather and conditions.

    @Chris wrote: Where exactly in any of the above comments did anyone at anytime suggest race directors have or should have complete liability for race participants.

    I would say the entire topic largely focused on a debate about whether to cancel events under the justification of the participants safety, speaks to the liability of race directors.

    I DO understand the difference. Not knowing me, your comments would suggest that you don’t understand where this topic could lead if it isn’t kept within a comprehensive perspective. Perhaps your a new visitor to Conduct the Juices? If you’d like to volunteer to help me with me reading comprehension, perhaps you could contact me off of this blog and we could discuss it over email. I don’t feel like my comments were unreasonable or my suggestions ridiculous, but rather food for thought. People sue for cups of coffee that are too hot. In ultra’s, I’ve seen RD’s deal with comments, criticism and feedback ranging from “flavors of gels at aid stations that made me sick” to liability over who has the right of way on Auburn Lakes Trails during the Way Too Cool 50K when two runners collide with each other.

    So, while it may seem that my suggestions are ridiculous and unreasonable, to me, they may not be that far off the mark.

    You failed to mention during your comment, are you an RD?

    • @AJW, Don’t know, Jizzle, but since he was a quarter miler I doubt he DNFed himself. You might be interested to know that there is an award called The Bowerman that is awarded to the top male and female NCAA track and field athletes. Last year was the first year it was awarded. Check out the link for info on the finalists and for a bio on Bowerman.

  10. I’m late to the party, so I’m sure it’s all been said, but-
    Coming from an adventure racing background, I’ve done many things in the name of competition that I’ve looked back on afterwards and thought “I was in some real danger!” Paddling all night on Lake Superior and some unknown river in Borneo, running through miles of heavy snow, wading across rivers in the middle of nowhere, climbing up scree slopes because it was the shortest route, etc. I did all that because there was a team up ahead, or right behind, and dammit it was a race. The last big race I was in, someone died, not because he was old or out of shape, but because he was in the wrong place (in 1st place at the time) at the wrong time (when someone from the second place team started a rockfall above him. Was it the RD’s fault- no, was it the racer’s fault- no, could it have been prevented- probably. But, by whom? Everyone knew, or should have known from the gear list, that we were going to spend 9ish days doing some pretty crazy stuff. I can say it definitely changed my perspective on life and competition.

    I’ve also dnf’d a couple of running races not because the conditions were bad, but because I just hadn’t prepared myself for something simple like a cold night. It’s all in the perspective you bring to the start line. Plain and Barkley? I’ve got extra stuff in my pack because the goal is not only to try to finish, but to outlast everyone and overcompensate for bad conditions. For most other ultras, it’s not the 100miles (or 50, or 50K), it’s the 6 miles to the next aid, 11 miles til I put on dry socks, 17 miles til someone puts sunblock on me. It creates a different mindset, and that’s o.k.- that’s what makes it the inclusive community it is.

    I didn’t go to those 3 races so I don’t know what it looked like out there, but I’d like to think that if possible, I’d have been prepared for the conditions at the start line (setting aside the pride and bringing a jacket or tights or something that we would normally disdain), and if not I’d make the proper decision to call it a day at the appropriate place. Sometimes we just need to put away our ego and make finishing itself a victory, and taking care of your own self a bigger victory. For those of us that can’t do that (I mean, there were people that still wanted to race WS2008- quoted in the SACBEE even), the RD has to make the call. It’s a good thing most of us make so much money to compensate for our lofty decision making.

    • @whitetrash, I was perusing the RRCA insurance guidelines (this is the insurance that Waldo uses) and here are the suggestions on when to cancel or delay road races (not mountain ultras):

      “Course Conditions. If the general condition of the course has become extremely hazardous due to the weather, then a decision to delay or cancel the event must be made. Common sense should prevail. Consult with local authorities in making your decision.”

      When to Cancel/Postpone/Modify a Road Race due to Adverse Weather Conditions

      (*) A road race should be cancelled, postponed, modified or shortened by an appropriate amount when:

      1. Heat and Humidity – The dew point is 80F or above at the start time. This information is available on the weather channel and from your local weather service. The RRCA Sports Medicine committee is making this recommendation due to the ease of accessibility of dew point information compared to Wet bulb globe temperature (WBGT) as a heat stress indicator. The American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) recommends canceling or modifying a road race when the WBGT is 82F. To figure out the WBGT requires the measurement of dry bulb, black bulb and wet bulb temperature. Of these, only the dry bulb is announced regularly on local weather stations. If your club would like further information on WBGT as a heat stress indicator, please request ACSM position stand on Prevention of Thermal Injuries during Distance Running.

      2. Lightening is present. Send runners home if there is not adequate safe shelter for everyone to wait out the storm. Remember, trees are not safe shelter and lightning can strike up to 10 miles away.

      3. Hazardous footing on a race route, caused by ice, snow, mud, etc. Detour the race route from these areas.

      4. Snow storms. Many runners will want to run. Get input from local police. As mentioned above, it’s not just hazardous footing. There is significant danger from vehicles and snow removal equipment if the race course is shared with traffic. Visibility and safety of volunteers should also be considered.

      5. Cold. When the combined temperature and wind chill is below 5F, there is the risk of flesh freezing and hypothermia.

      1. When races are being held in extreme temperature conditions, either hot or cold, try to make an effort to educate the running community on proper dress, hydration and medication precautions. Refer to the RRCA hot and cold weather guidelines for further information.

      2. When holding a race in the heat, always provide adequate fluids at the start, finish and frequent stops along the course.

      3. Whenever holding races in a cold environment, make sure that shelter, space blankets, and hot liquids (i.e. bouillon, sugared tea) are made available for after the road race.

      4. Be aware of local weather conditions for your area, such as tornadoes and advise runners accordingly.

      (*) It is the race and medical director’s discretion whether to modify the race to a “fun run” and give out prizes randomly. Sponsors should be made aware ahead of time about complications due to weather conditions that could change the race format.

      • @Craig, Wow, that’s much worse than I would imagine. Does this mean that if your race insured under RRCA umbrella, the conditions are as described, the RD goes ahead and does NOT cancel the race, and some hazardeous cituation happens, the RD/race is not covered from runner and his/her relatives? No, seriously, I would like to know. Since I am not a lawyer, I never know how to read official documents.

      • @Craig, I guess that means you wouldn’t want to put on an “Extreme Waldo.” July start before the trails are cleared and the snow has finished melting, no aid stations, no trail markings, carry everything you need, purify water, and bring a map.

  11. I highly doubt that going forward with a race in the conditions listed above would void coverage, but without reading the actual policy, can’t say for sure. Always a good idea to read through the actual policy (not just the declarations pages), even if it can be a somewhat painful experience. Your broker (or whoever you procure the policy from) should be able to answer any questions. And, hell, if you couldn’t hold a race when the dew point was over 80, we’d NEVER have any races down in Texas!

  12. People are getting softer everyday. Everyone is always looking for ways to make things easier,I think it’s a trap we’ve all fallen into. The days of real tough men are numbered.

    I know of one soft runner that was in your race. Thanks for not making the qualifications too hard.

  13. Great topic

    I think it largely comes down to expectations. Almost all of my mountain running is solo. I rely solely on my wits (or lack thereof), what I have on my person and natural water sources. But if racing I expect aid stations with some stuff, a course to be marked, my drop bag to be where it is supposed to be etc. Each race in different with the expectations (not much to a Barkley aid station). Point is I am prepared for a much different set on circumstances for a solo 50 mile mountain run than I am for a 50 mountain trail race.

    Each of us has a level of comfort as far as our margin of safety. I have a fair bit of backcountry experience and am comfortable with the safety margins that I set up for myself. RD’s can have all sorts of mandatory gear (like UTMB) but without some experience it may not help much. Part of that experience is knowing when to pull the plug. I can make that call for myself. Making that call for someone else – or in the case of 2,200 racers plus staff/volunteers would be tough. As someone said lowest common denominator.


  14. Guess what, some French people read this 🙂 At least one.

    Anyway, they have probably canceled the UTMB for a combination of reasons:
    – in France, they are indeed liable. I’m no lawyer so I’m unaware of the exact details.
    – last year, 3 people died in the Alps during a 100km trail race (Raid du Mercantour), during which the weather was somehow similar to the UTMB conditions.
    – not exactly what was the time of these events, but the CCC runners were finishing their race during the same night (until it got canceled as well). Some of them reported really extreme weather condition, and feared for their lives. At least one person with hypothermia had to be evacuated.

    It seems a lot of people who were there agree with the cancellation. However:
    – this weather was expected since days, why have they not set a alternate route avoiding the most exposed area?
    – why let it start and cancel 3 hours in, instead of reporting the start 24 hours later?
    – not getting into communication issues…. Seems it was a mess.

  15. I’m new to this ultra running life, so please bear with me. But when I ran my first ultra last year, I figured it was my responsibility to make sure I was prepared physically, with what kit and such I would bring with me. There were aspects that I couldn’t govern – it was 33C (91F) the day of the race. I hadn’t trained in anything hotter than 21C. But that wasn’t the RD’s responsibility or fault. It was mine to make sure I had the right clothing and water bottles…they provided the AS and I expected them to do so as specified. I also signed a wee bit of paper that absolved the RD of responsibility for my health. If the RD had canceled due to heat, I would have been quite cross, he’s provided water and hydration and such as the AS, therefore it’s my business to drop if the race is too much for my preparation. If I’m running in the mountains, it’s supposed to be hard. If you don’t want hard, why run an ultra?

    Or as a newbie, am I missing something?

  16. Was at Chimera and would have loved to finish the race. Was prepared for bad/extreme weather. Even relished the thought. I love rain. I love pummeling rain and cold. Snow, with the proper clothing/footwear, no problem. Let’s have it!

    Finish time would have been lengthened but yes, do feel many would have done whatever it took to finish, and would have.

    Whether or not it should be the RD’s responsibility to call a race due to fear that the weather is so bad it puts the participants’ lives (including volunteers lives at the top of the mountain where the aid station blew away) in much greater danger, the RD of Chimera, (I believe along with the Forest Service) made the call to terminate last year’s race.

    It was disappointing, yes, for anyone who had trained since Spring for the race and who believed that they could have finished. I’m sure the RD wasn’t jumping up and down for joy about making the decision either. That is a fact.

    But I don’t think anyone was really complaining at the time, or since, about the decision. Most fully understood why the RD made the call and most fully supported the decision.

    The weather conditions had turned truly extreme and the RD used common sense. Thank you to the RD. He may have saved a life or lives out there that day.

    All those affected lived to race another day. And that is good, in my book, anyway.

  17. @Craig,

    I don’t know the exact statistics, but it usually doesn’t rain hard like that in SoCal, or even rain at all, in December. That kind of weather usually hits in January/February down here. Of course, that doesn’t mean it can’t pour in December, which indeed it did.

    The 100 miler was added by the RD at the request of ultrarunners, as a result of the AC100 being cancelled.

    My comment above was to say that the weather had turned truly extreme and the RD and Forest Service used common sense to cancel the race, despite my own personal disappointment.

    It is another question about whether scheduling an ultra in the mountains in early December or later in winter shows common sense (even in an area where December weather is usually fine), to which the answer, I admit, is probably, no.

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