Running series hosts annual Spring Creek Memorial race Saturday
STEAMBOAT SPRINGS— Runners will take on a unique trail experience at 8 a.m. Saturday when the Steamboat Springs Running Series hosts its annual Spring Creek Memorial race, where 150 to 175 runners can choose to participate in a 5K hike, 9.5-mile run or kids race.
The event, started in 1992, is run in memory of founder Ken Brenner’s sister, Patty Brenner Hagberg, who was hit by a truck on the lower portion of the trail in 1991.
“It’s also really a focus on sharing the trails,” said Cara Marrs, running series director. “And we have a lot of conflicts with runners, bikers and pedestrians. It’s a good reminder of trail sharing and being respectful.”
Unlike other races in the running series, the Spring Creek Memorial raises money to help keep the 13-race running series operating each summer in Steamboat. Runners from Florida, New York, Texas, Alabama, Wisconsin and other states travel to Steamboat to participate in the series.
While Spring Creek Trail is open to everyone, this race features a special cut-through on private properties owned by Sonny Petrie and Gigi and Johnny Walker, which normally are not open to the public.
Runners for the 9.5-mile race are in for a treat as they make their way from the Ditch Trail, up into the private property section, then to Buffalo Pass, which offers unique views of Steamboat.
“It’s a primitive trail,” Marrs said. “You’re jumping over logs, and there’s a ton of cool history because it was the old stage route before Rabbit Ears, where wooden carts traveled down the mountain.”
The running series has also worked with the Yampa Valley Sustainability Council to make sure there is no waste on the trail. Runners are asked to bring their own refillable water bottles or vests, which they can refill at one aid station along the 9.5-mile route. The race also offers sandwiches and cookies when runners are finished — treats that don’t require plates and minimize waste.
Marrs describes the race as “great for people who have never done anything,” because of its inviting scenery, kids race and hiking options.
Adults can pay a $38 entry fee, which includes T-shirts and food, or pay $28 if they don’t want the shirt. Kids younger than 16 pay their age.
Packet pickup will be from 4 to 6 p.m. Friday at Twisted Trails or packets can be picked up the morning of the race. Runners are encouraged to sign up in advance at runningseries.com.
All races will start at the pond on Spring Creek Trail. People can park on Maple Street or in the overflow parking at Steamboat Springs High School.
“I do tons of running, and there’s never a race that I sign up for less than $100,” Marrs said. “Our races are so cheap, because our goal is to promote people coming to Steamboat and activity in the outdoors.”
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