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Someone on the ultralist was asking about Bear Mountain 50K, and I sent this as a response:<br><br>
I've entered the 50 miler, but I did the 50K course this weekend with<br>
a few friends. Conditions weren't great--still a few inches of stiff<br>
snow, which helped footing sometimes; icy patches; plenty of water<br>
flowing on the trails.<br><br>
The 50K is being run, with a few changes, clockwise rather than<br>
counterclockwise, which is what's now being shown on the Web site.<br>
This is a good thing: The most difficult trails--Suffern-Bear Mountain<br>
and TMI--are covered during the first half of the race rather than<br>
the second half. A lot of quick ups and downs here, and plenty of<br>
rocks, especially over the early parts of the SBM--the climb up to the<br>
top of West Mountain is a steep rock scramble. Despite the difficulty<br>
of the first half, a lot of the second half is quite runnable, and you<br>
can make up a lot of time. The last 5 miles, minus a climb over the<br>
shoulder of West, is mostly downhill, including a great stretch down<br>
to Anthony Wayne, then an even nicer one on the Fawn Trail and 1777 to<br>
the finish.<br><br>
I've only run a handful of 50Ks--GEER, HAT, PHUNT, Finger Lakes,<br>
Promise Land--and TNF 50K at Bear Mountain is easily the most<br>
difficult course I've been on. On Saturday, with a few bonus miles,<br>
some downtime trying to find a few mysterious trails, and a darkness I<br>
never expected to hit, it took us 9:15 to cover the 50K course. On a<br>
good day with good trail conditions and in my best shape, I suspect I<br>
could cover this course in about 7:30--about 2 hours slower than<br>
Promise Land, the most difficult 50K I've run.<br><br>
The 50M is going to be interesting, which will include a much longer<br>
stretch of the SBM. With a 13-hour time limit, I'm thinking a lot of<br>
runners will be racing the cutoffs.
 

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Thanks for the info - makes me think twice about registering for the 50k. I'm fine running for such a long time, that doesn't phase me. But I'm wondering if the trails will be too technical for me. Might have to shoot for one of the shorter distances.<br><br>
Thanks again for all the "leg" work...
 
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