Alyeska summer events test top runners, offering rainforest courses to challenging mountain courses where runners log Denali-level vertical
August 4, 2011 (Girdwood, Alaska) –Alyeska Resort will host four mountain foot races in August and September. All races begin at the tramway base and include the following: Alyeska Mountain Run (vertical trail course to the upper tram terminal), Fun Guy/Fun Gal Run (five kilometer lower mountain run), North Face Vertical Challenge (ten hour climb-athon) and Tram-to-Tram Run (seven mile rainforest course). These events are designed to offer friendly competition and participants of all fitness levels are encouraged to register.
The Alyeska Mountain Run features a 2,200 vertical foot gain over a three kilometer distance. The 2010 race attracted over 50 runners and the winner finished the course in just over 26 minutes. The 2011 event will be held on August 13, 2011 and the race is part of the Alaskan Mountain Runners Grand Prix Series representing the series’ final stop. The entry fee is $30 and includes a tram ride down to the base once runners have finished. Race registration begins at 10:00 A.M. with the race start schedule for 12:00 P.M. The Mountain Run is open to all ages and participants under the age of 18 will need a parent or guardian present to register. Additional information about the race and registration can be found at www.alaskamountainrunners.org. The event is also timed to kick off the 2011 Blueberry Festival which takes place in the Alyeska Pond Courtyard on Saturday and Sunday, August 13 and 14, 2011. The festival celebrates Alaska’s wild blueberries and features live music, arts & craft booths and blueberry-themed eats.
In celebration of Fungus Fair, Alyeska Resort will host the annual Fun Guy/Fun Gal Fun Run on August 28, 2011 in partnership with the Chugach National Forest. The course is five kilometer and takes runners along the base of Mt. Alyeska with gradual accents and descents. The 2010 men’s class winner completed the race in 20:04.27 minutes while the women’s top finisher took 29:11. There is no capacity limit to how many runners can compete and given its fun, adventurous nature, this race attracts a big crowd. Registration is open to all ages and the entry fee is $15 and includes a race souvenir. In addition, the first 60 runners to register will receive a commemorative 2011 race t-shirt. The race begins at 8:00 A.M. For those who do not wish to run the entire five kilometer run but wish to get active and participate, the Spore Sprint is a fun, shorter alternative. The North Face Challenge, scheduled for September 10, 2011 returns for the fourth year. The event continually attracts numbers of alpine foot racers from all over Alaska looking to conquer the daunting task of lapping the 2,200 vertical foot trail as many times as possible in a ten hour time frame. This climb-a-thon is a demanding run up the two plus mile course where participants then take the tram down to start another lap. Given its vertical gain, multiple switch-backs and breath-taking views the North Face trail is an Alaskan classic.
The 2010 North Face Vertical Challenge winner, Clint McCool of Anchorage, completed 12 laps and set a new record in this endurance event. His effort equated to 26,400 vertical feet, which is higher than most Himalayan peaks. The entry fee for this event is $20 in advanced and $30 day of race, and open to all ages. The race timeframe runs from 9:00 A.M. to 7:00 P.M. with registration beginning at 8:00 A.M. at the tramway base.
The final running event to be held at Alyeska is the second annual Tram-to-Tram Fun Run. The course utilizes the much celebrated Winner Creek Trail adjacent to the resort. This event will be held on September 18, 2011 and begins at the base of the Aerial Tram. The seven mile course follows Winner Creek for three and a half miles out to the hand tram then doublebacks to the resort. Registration is open to all ages and begins at 2:30 P.M. There is a registration fee of $20 which includes a post run cook-out at Glacier Express Restaurant for participants. The run begins at 3:00 P.M. and post-run festivities will conclude at 6:00 P.M. Proceeds from the run registration will go to the Winner Creek Bridge Fund. Runners will also receive a souvenir pedometer to keep track of distance, time and number of steps during the race.
For more information about these race events and upcoming events at Alyeska Resort, please visit AlyeskaResort.com.
Alyeska Resort is Alaska’s premier year-round destination featuring The Hotel Alyeska, an award-winning 304 room full-service property. Located just 40 miles from Anchorage and Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport, Alyeska Resort is your base camp for summer and winter excursions. Alyeska Resort stands out during ski season with 650” of average snowfall annually and the longest-continuous double black diamond ski run in North America. Learn more about the resort and plan your Alaskan adventure at www.AlyeskaResort.com or 800.880.3880.