This race was brought to my attention this morning and I absolutely HAD to share. This is the "Run For The Hills" half-marathon & 5k hosted by The Mountain Institute, at Spruce Knob, West Virginia. Check this out, it's insane. And fabulous.
Spruce Knob is a place very near to my heart. The two summers I spent there (one as a student, one as staff) played a huge role in my career selection and the sense of identity I have with Appalachia. It also gave me friendships that have endured the test of time.
Running up there is insane. Spruce's elevation peaks at 4863 feet. It's surrounded by national forests. The views are phenomenal. Most of the roads aren't paved. I have a scar on one knee from tripping on a rock during a run on Spruce in 1998. I wear it as a badge of honor.
I'm going to have to cut this short--running recap to come possibly tomorrow evening. I have a mid-week run on deck for tonight and a 12-miler with Meg early tomorrow morning. But the bottom line: if you can get to Spruce to run, do it. You'll never forget it.