Never Summer Adventure Race returns to Grand County |

Never Summer Adventure Race returns to Grand County

A race bib from the 2017 Never Summer Adventure Race sits on the back of a pack during last summer's event.
File photo

When the sun rises over the Colorado River on Saturday morning its golden rays will shine upon the shoulders of 110 individuals preparing for the third annual Never Summer Adventure Race in Grand County.

The race will kick off at 9 a.m. at Pumphouse Recreation Area southwest of Kremmling just off the Trough Road. The Never Summer Adventure Race is broken down into two difficulty categories.

The advanced race, a 24-hour tour of Middle Park, will take participants from Pumphouse down the Colorado River to Rancho Del Rio. From Rancho Del Rio racers will then head north to the Yarmony Mountain area, riding mountain bikes and trekking on foot at various times. Racers will then head east through a winding route all the way to Snow Mountain Ranch. From Snow Mountain Ranch racers will make the final dash to the finish line at Granby Ranch.

Katie Ferrington, race director and president of Never Summer Race Production Inc., said she expects most of the 50 advanced course racers to finish their journey around 9 a.m. Sunday morning though teams could begin crossing the finish line as early as 2 a.m.

Their route will require them to reach 28 separate checkpoints. The checkpoints are located in remote areas that are typically off the main trail network in the area, requiring racers to move cross country and employ land navigation techniques to reach their destinations.

Less advanced racers will participate in a six-hour racecourse that will take them from Pumphouse down to Radium on the Colorado River. Racers will then spend the remainder of the course trekking and biking around the Warm Spring trail system and the Argentine Trail according to Ferrington.

This iteration of the Never Summer Adventure Race marks the third consecutive year the event has been held in Grand County. Each race is broken down into three primary modes of travel: paddling, bicycling and hiking/trekking.

The first year the race was held in Grand County participants spent their time in the area around Grand Lake. Last year the race focused more on the Fraser River valley and featured extended race sections on both Granby Ranch and Devil’s Thumb Ranch property. This year Ferrington said she decided to explore the western reaches of the county. She is already planning for next summer’s adventure race and while she said an entirely new course will be developed she was tight-lipped regarding a more accurate location.

Spectators are encouraged to come out and cheer on the racers at both the starting line at Pumphouse and at the finish line of the 24-hour race at Granby Ranch.

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