Leadville Ain’t Got Nothin’ on The Arrowhead 135
Well, okay… That might not be true. The Leadville 100 and the Arrowhead 135 are completely different races. For some odd reason, though, I am more drawn to the Arrowhead 135. It is a winter race in Minnesota. Yah, it gets really freakin’ cold up there in the Winter, dontcha know? (Sorry to all of our Minnesotan readers).
Seriously, though. You need to check this race out. You can do the race on foot, ski, or bike, and you cover 135 miles of snow/ice covered terrain in temps ranging from 15 degrees to negative 20-something or lower. There is a 60 hour cutoff, and you are almost completely self-supported. The only support you get is at 3 check-in stations (although one of them is a small tipi that offers little warmth or space) where you can warm up and re-stock your food and water.
To get a real feel for the race with some incredible photos, check out this guy’s race report. It is an amazing write-up with incredible pics. Another good write-up from the guy that took 3rd place in 2009’s race can be found right here (Note: He also competed in the ’09 Bonk Hard Chill and will be competing in the Chill again this year).
This year’s race is happening on Feb 1st through the 3rd, so I don’ t think we’ll be ready for that one. What do you think? Actually, I don’t know if I’ll ever be ready for this race – not only from a physical/psychological side of things, but from a gear/monetary side of things as well.
I checked out some of the gear these guys used during this race, and it gets pretty damn expensive in a hurry. Some of the gear is pretty sweet, though, especially the cold-weather gear bags made by Epic Designs. I would also need a new bike. I would love to get a Surly Pugsley.
I think Moots makes a bike that uses the super-fat Endomorph 3.7 tires. I haven’t looked into it, though. I’d also need a new sleeping bag, bivy sac, and pretty much an entire wardrobe of cold-weather biking clothes. Plus there’s the $200.00 entry fee, and the costs associated with getting there and back, lodging, and food. On top of all of that, we’d have to train longer and harder than we ever have. But other than that, I say we should do this.
Since I’m not independently wealthy, and we don’t have any major sponsorship deals – YET – I think I’ll just have to dream about it. Maybe some day… Maybe… How about you guys? Anyone else interested?