Burning River Endurance Run & Relay

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Burning River Endurance Run & Relay presents 100 mile, 50 mile and marathon solo runs as well as a 100 mile relay race in 2016. Western Reserve Racing hosts it and offers both Western States and UTMB qualifying spots.

The term “burning river” holds some irony as this race celebrates the health, strength, vitality, and beauty of the Cuyahoga River while remembering its past controversy that resulted in water pollution legislation.

Course

Burning River Endurance Runs & Relay returns this year in Northeast Ohio, featuring 100-mile, 50-mile, and marathon solo runs as well as a relay race. Hosted by Western Reserve Racing and qualifying for the Western States 100 as part of the Midwest Grand Slam of Ultrarunning series.

The course is absolutely breathtaking, offering both road running and easy-to-moderate trail running to start before progressing to more technical terrain in its later stages. Aid stations were filled with friendly volunteers offering Tailwind as fuel options.

“I thoroughly enjoyed this race and would highly recommend it. The challenge and reward elements made for an ideal way to end my summer of energy-sapping training runs and races; moreover, its well-marked route made sure even when later the field spread out, there was no trouble remaining on its designated route.”

“Burning River” is an apt and fitting name for this race, recalling past tragedies while honoring and celebrating Cuyahoga River’s health, strength, vitality, and natural beauty. A Time magazine cover depicting its 1969 fire spurred environmental legislation to control pollution as well as create the Environmental Protection Agency; since then, it has been extensively cleaned up while now taking place through Cleveland Metroparks, Cuyahoga Valley National Park, and Summit Metro Parks and proudly bears its once embarrassing moniker with pride.

Aid Stations

The Burning River 100 is a point-to-point 100 and 50-mile run/relay race held in northeast Ohio, serving as a Western States qualifier and third leg of the Midwest Grand Slam of Ultrarunning! Additionally, this scenic route passes through some of NE Ohio’s most picturesque spots en route.

At this event, aid stations were well stocked with food and fluids of varying types: from GU Hydration Drink Tabs and ROCTANE Energy Gels to water, Sprite or 7 Up, Coke, and some specialty drinks at select locations; salt replacement foods; pretzels chips, etc as well as salt replacement drinks were available at certain stations staffed with experienced volunteers; they even helped me avoid getting lost over 100 miles! Organizers responded very promptly when I had any inquiries or asked any questions! The course itself was well marked; even experienced volunteers helped me out when needed when I had inquiries!

Runners are encouraged to utilize crew access at aid stations for nutrition, hydration, and emotional support but should bear in mind the variable conditions on this course and that crew access may be limited at certain spots. An out-and-back format makes this race somewhat simpler in comparison with point-to-point classes, which often require more crew access, but keep in mind that many aid stations are 9 miles apart!

Logistics

The Burning River Endurance Run & Relay runs along scenic trails of Northeast Ohio in Cuyahoga Valley National Park and Summit Metro Parks, featuring technical trails, crushed limestone paths, as well as some sections of road running. The race serves as both a Western States qualifier and as part of the Midwest Grand Slam of Ultrarunning series.

Point-to-point events can be more challenging to the crew, though, with aid stations spaced out 7-9 miles apart, this event should not be as daunting. Furthermore, runners may opt to change to 50M mode at any point starting at mile 50 without forfeiting overall awards or age group rankings.

Overall

The 17th Annual Burning River Endurance Run & Relay offers 100-mile, 50-mile, and marathon solo and relay options across Northeast Ohio’s Cuyahoga Valley National Park and Summit Metro Parks – with breathtaking trails in both parks serving as venues. Produced by Western Reserve Racing, the event serves as both a Western States 100 qualifier and leg 3 of the Midwest Grand Slam of Ultrarunning, additionally serving as a fundraiser for Conservancy of Cuyahoga Valley National Park Foundation as well as Conservancy of Cuyahoga Valley National Park Foundation; additionally offering new Relay option in 2014.