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Triathlon celebrates spring

— Organizers of the inaugural Steamboat Springathlon are touting Saturday’s multi-event race as fun for lovers of both winter and spring sports.

While warming temperatures may disappoint those longing to extend the ski season, Scott Wither, one of the head organizers, believes the triathlon spinoff provides a fun and ideal way to transition between seasons.

“We’re trying to give people a reason to celebrate the spring,” Wither said.



The inspiration for the Steamboat Springathlon stems from the success of Pole, Peddle and Paddle, an annual ski, bike and kayak competition in Jackson, Wyo.

Saturday’s race will begin at noon at the top of the Storm Peak lift. Participants will ski or snowboard down Buddy’s Run to Thunderhead Express lift, where they will switch to snowshoes and make their way to Gondola Square. Once down, racers will conclude the three-legged race with a 5K bicycle course that starts and finishes at Gondola Square.



Racers are encouraged to attend a course inspection from 10:15 to 11 a.m. Saturday to become familiar with conditions and the route. Maps will be provided and each portion of the course will be marked and guarded to ensure safety. Warm weather may damage the snowshoe area slightly, but racers will be asked to maneuver around dry spots.

“We’re hoping the weather doesn’t affect it,” Wither said. “But that’s the fun part about this race. It’s pretty unconventional.”

There will be four divisions marked by age. Awards will be presented to the top team and individual.

Those planning to participate who have not already registered are asked to attend Friday’s pre-race party at the Bear River Bar & Grill from 4 to 8 p.m. to sign up. Racers can also register by calling Wither at 879-8339 or 846-5898. Participants can also register online at active.com or mountainsportsmagazine.com.

Wither said he expects many of the competitors will wait until Friday or Saturday to sign up. All registration closes at 10 a.m. Saturday and racers are asked to be at the Storm Peak start line no later than 11:30 a.m. For those participants who don’t have season lift passes, Ski Corp. is offering a two-day lift ticket for $25 a day. Proof of entry is required.

In addition to racers, volunteers are needed to make the inaugural running of the Steamboat Springathlon a success. Volunteers can sign up at Friday’s party or call Wither.

Wither thinks the event has the potential to grow.

“Closing weekend is great,” Wither said. “The snow is slushy. There are a bunch of parties. People will be pretty excited.”


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