2012 TNF EC 50 Mile Course Change

The North Face Endurance Challenge 2012Inclement weather will result in a highly modified course for this year’s The North Face Endurance Challenge 50 Mile Championships. The California State Parks have decided that their jurisdiction’s higher elevations and the area’s particular topography make it ill-suited for hosting many hundreds of trail runners on Saturday. As a result, the entire TNF EC 50 mile (now 46.8 miles), as well as the 50k will be run on National Park Service-administered lands.

What does that mean? Well, the entire course north of Muir Beach is out. No Cardiac Hill. No Coastal Trail out-and-back. No Stinson Beach. Instead, there race will consist of two laps of a 23.4-mile course. Each loop begins with approximately 13 miles out to Muir Beach on the original course followed by the original course’s final 10 miles. Full aid stations will be found at Tennessee Valley (Runners pass through twice per lap.), Muir Beach, and Fort Barry, where the start/finish is located. Water stops will remain at the “Mile 5 Water Stop” and Alta.

All the details of the new 50-mile course (pdf) are now available. The new 50k course (pdf) is available, as well.

2012 The North Face Endurance Challenge 50 Mile replacement course

The replacement course for the 2012 The North Face Endurance Challenge 50 Mile.
Click here for full size image.

There are 13 comments

  1. Anonymous

    Someone from TNF should really take another look at this map and updated it. The "3" turn should be in the same location as the "9" turn.

  2. swampy

    Was it the inaugural 50 miler that was cancelled in DC due to hurricane? I remember hearing about a small contingent lacing up and doing it anyway.

    1. Jason

      Yes, in 2008 (i think). I was part of that "small contingent" of folks. At the pre-race meeting, TNF (including DK) warned us all not to run; that the weather forecast was too severe. Turned out to be true. Still, about 20 of us met that morning at Great Falls and ran between 50k and 40 miles. By the end of it, the trails had become so flooded that people were running laps around the parking lot. This was to have been only my second ultra. I ran at least 30 miles that day in a torrential tropical storm along trails that turned into gushing rivers. Been hooked ever since!

  3. Aaron Sorensen

    So now is it a whole new ball game as to who will have a chance at the podium?

    46.8 miles and less climbing mean the speedies will have a much greater chance???

    1. Amanda

      Have you run in the Headlands? There's still a good amount of elevation change… and running down those stairs into Pirate's Cove (twice!) is going to be a mess, haha.

    2. Bryon Powell

      At first glance that does shift the favorites from how things were looking a few days ago, but the course will be soggy to start and SLOPPY be lap two. By the time the leaders come through the first short loop, how many thousands of runners-passages will have occurred? Instead of mostly untrod course, the leaders will see 25+ miles of possible mush. Hard to say how it all shakes out… at least until about 10 am tomorrow.

      1. Amanda

        Agreed, although the course is about half fireroad now…. (Miwok, Bobcat, Marincello, parts of Coastal Trail)… although around Pirate's Cove and Muir Beach/Coyote Ridge will be a slip-n-slide

  4. Dean G

    This might sound silly… But from what you are reporting, shoe choice now becomes critical… (like in Zegama) And experience with bad conditions is a real plus.

  5. Mike

    Trekking poles for lap 2? JK. It won't be the "fastest" run, but with the right frame of mind running in snow, mud, whatever, can be more fun and more than equal to the challenge of a fast run.

  6. swampy

    Right on! I heard the story from two guys that were at West Point at the time and were also part of the run. As I was reading all of the complaints on the TNFEC page yesterday, I kept thinking, "just go run if it means that much to you" I certainly would have.

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