Mount Washington Road Race

2012-06-16 17:32:00.000 – Steve Harshman,  Summit Intern

Runners Closing in on the Finish

What a fantastic day to go for a run, and clearly others around the mountain felt the same. Not sure if I would chose an 8-mile run all uphill but that’s exactly what close to 1,000 runners decided to take part in today.

Hosted by the Mount Washington Auto Road, the Northeast Delta Dental Mount Washington Road Race is an annual event where courageous athletes attempt the long trek from the base of the Auto Road to the summit. While the race’s slogan, ‘Only One Hill,’ sounds optimistic, running about 5,000 vertical feet up to the top is nothing to laugh at. The event has people from around the world flocking to the Whites to take part in the one-of-a-kind opportunity. Participants range from kids in their early teens, to runners in their 90s, determined to reach the top.

Throughout the morning we watched as wave after wave of cars made their way up the road to cheer on friends and family members, or just to witness this amazing feat. At 9:00 the gun went off, sending the runners dashing up the steep slope. Great conditions of clear skies, warm temperatures, and a dry road helped push the entrants up the mountain, making for some impressive times. The winner reached us in just under an hour! The first four finishers all managed to run faster than last year’s top runner.

Watching the athletes reach the top was truly a sight to see. The strain and determination on everyone’s face was inspiring. Runners, after crossing the line, fell into awaiting blankets, some barely able to stay on their feet. Being a runner myself, I have profound respect for everyone who took part in today’s event, knowing just how difficult this must have been (although I personally would have picked something on flatter ground).

 

Steve Harshman,  Summit Intern

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