The idea has been thrown around for a little while, but tonight it’s official: I’m headed to the Bear 100.
The Bear, a 100-mile endurance run, takes place Sept. 23-24, beginning in Logan, Utah, and ending in Fish Haven, Idaho.
I’m not racing it, however. I’ll be pacing my friend Nick. He has to run the first 50 miles or so solo before pacers are allowed. I’ll pace for part of it and Nick’s girlfriend Laurie will handle the rest. When not pacing, Laurie and I will serve as Nick’s crew.
The opportunity to pace and crew for Nick is one I couldn’t pass up. I haven’t paced or crewed before, but after tracking a few friends online at the Western States 100 I’ve had the itch to help out at a 100-miler.
Fortunately, Nick and Laurie both have paced and crewed before, so I’ll learn from some veterans. Plus, both are a blast to hang out with — and we’ll spend plenty of time around each other during the course of a 100-mile race and about a 500-mile car ride to the starting line and another 500 miles back to Denver.
Elevation will be an issue — the race elevation ranges from 4,860 feet above sea level to 9,060 — but so will wildlife. In particular, we may encounter bears (duh).
I have a lot to learn about the Bear 100 during the next two months — and a race to run on Pikes Peak — but it’s nice to know that another adventure is looming on the horizon.