It’s back! Teams and solos have been seen skinning up Sunlight Mountain, training for the Third Annual, 24 Hours of Sunlight – an endurance race challenging teams of all ages and abilities to hike up the mountain and ski, board, and/or snowshoe down, for an entire 24 hour period.
It is the only race of its kind in this country in a discipline that is enormously popular in Europe. The event takes place at Sunlight Mountain Resort in Glenwood Springs, Colorado, on February 23-24, 2008. The later date, scheduled to take advantage of the waning full moon, allows for three more weeks of training over last year. So far, Community Banks of Colorado and Big Horn Toyota, both located in Glenwood Springs have stepped up to make sure the race continues for its third year. This year’s beneficiary is Valley View Hospital Foundation.
Last year’s race saw increased attendance, from 100 in 2006 to over 175 in 2007, a marriage proposal (she said yes!), 20 men and women attempting solo performances, a new world record on a split-board (Mike Schneiter) with a total vertical gain of 36,048 and a great time had by all. Ages of the participants ranged from 16yrs to 62yrs. Team names - always entertaining - included the winner of the Duo-Pro, You Can Sleep When You’re Dead, along with gems, Chairlifts Are For Wussies, Supersonic Lunar Lovers, and repeating Men At Their Peaks (in the 55+ year old bracket). Overall winners, Flippin’ Sweet Moves, completed 39 laps, traveling 54.6 miles and 58,578 vertical feet. Yes, there is something for everyone at the 24 hours of Sunlight!
The “fun” is not just for the racers. The Denver Post compared the vibe in the lodge, where a band played until 2am, wives, friends and support teams had pizza, pitchers, and hot food and beverages available throughout the night, as a “sleepover for grown ups!”
Teams that register early (before midnight on 1/15/08) not only get a $25 discount per person, each team member is automatically entered to win an Alpine Touring Package (Movement skis, Crispi Tele boots, Rottefella bindings, & Leki poles) from UTE City Cycles and Skis valued at $1,400. Go to 24hoursofsunlight.com for training tips, racing tips, more info & registration.
Mike Marolt, famed Everest skier and well known climber, came up with this idea and convinced Real Time Marketing (RTM) to produce the event. It was so popular that many called over the summer and encouraged them to do it again. “We just couldn’t disappoint the many racers who supported the event,” said Mary Kenyon, President of RTM, “The City of Glenwood Springs, its retailers, restaurants and community really rallied behind the event. This could be the next Leadville 100!” “You don’t have to be an extreme athlete or train all year,” Marolt adds, “you just have to grab a bunch of your more adventurous friends and go for it! There were couples, singles, old and young. Everyone had a great time.”
Look for an updated schedule of events, volunteer opportunities and registration information at www.24hoursofsunlight.com. For sponsorship or product sampling information, contact Lisa Willison @ 970-920-7748.