The Teanaway Country 100 has been something I’ve wanted to get off the ground for some time. Ever since my first visit to the Teanaway, to climb Mt. Stuart with my uncle, I’ve been enamored with the region.
I first began dreaming up a 100 mile route in early 2010. Having spent the previous four years focused on Western States, and with nothing to show for it, I turned my focus to putting on my own race. I bought the Green Trails map and began marking up a route, measuring distances, plotting aid stations, etc. It was a great idea, but it was shelved by the birth of our son Jack.
Ever since 2010, I’ve toyed with the idea of revisiting a 100 mile race in the Teanaway. Finally, after finishing Western States in 2016, I removed a giant gorilla from my back and found myself significantly less distracted by the burden of Western States. To say that I felt relief from finally finishing states would be the understatement of all understatements. I had, quite literally, not gone a single day since June 24, 2006 without thinking about the events that unfolded at the Placer High track. Sometimes it was a fleeting thought and other times I’d dwell on it for several minutes. Since crossing the finish line in 2016, I rarely think about my 2006 debacle.
With a Western States finish behind me, I decided to once again move forward with planning a 100 miler in the Teanaway. I knew that I was on to something pretty good when I took my friend and former co-worker Natalie and her boyfriend Mike out to run the Iron-Bear loop this past June. They both live in New York now and were in town for a wedding. Mike had never run in the Cascades and was blown away by the beauty of the Teanaway. Natalie, though no stranger to the Cascades, was also floored by the scenery of the loop we ran (all part of the Teanaway Country 100).
After a couple solo trips to scout the area, I invited 3 other friends out to do a totally new section of the course. We covered an incredibly challenging yet beautiful 18 miles or so of the course. Near Lake Ann, Morgan turned to me and said, “People are going to love this.” I considered it incredibly high praise, given Morgan is not prone to hyperbole. As a quick aside, I stated on that run, and on several occasions since, that Lake Ann is the most incredible non-wilderness setting I’ve witnessed in the Cascades.
The Teanaway Country 100 is a very tough course. It is one of the more challenging hundred-mile races in the world. It’s also one of the most beautiful. We are going to provide an incredibly well marked course with amazing aid. I’m confident that our volunteers and race staff will be informative, energetic, and appropriately stubborn when it comes to throwing in the towel.
I truly hope you’ll join me in the second running of the Teanaway Country 100!