Backcountry travel

Ras & Kathy Vaughan: Just Ordinary Human Beings

Within the progression of ultra running, Ras & Kathy Vaughan are rather unlikely activists. Ras’ first backpacking trip at age 11 ended with his Boy Scout troop being rescued by helicopter. When Ras and Kathy met in 1996 neither had any formal athletic experience, and Ras in particular was doing …

Backcountry travel

A Lexicon for Ultra: Running | Mountaineering | Hiking | Walking

Like all athletic disciplines, ultra running has its own unique vocabulary which can be off-putting at first. For starters, the term “ultra running” is a bit of a misnomer. A major misconception is that “ultra (and trail) running” involves running at all times. Yes, depending on the route, the very …

Racing

Ragsdale & Crew Successful at Moab 240

Seattle’s Chris Ragsdale, considered one of the US’ top ultra cyclists, has increasingly put his athletic efforts into ultra running. As Chris’ training buddy Jim Ryan has noted, Chris is building a resume as an all-around ultra athlete. After a successful but painful 2013 Race Across America, Chris re-evaluated his …

Backpacking

Jessica Kelley Goes Wild

I first got to know Jessica Kelley in 2013 when she was a coach with Cycle University, and was the liaison with the Cascade Bicycle Club’s High Performance Cycling team. At the time she probably thought of herself as a triathlete, and as you can see in the video below, …

Personalities

Ragsdale and Ryan at the Moab 200

Over the past few years Seattle’s Chris Ragsdale, who earned a reputation as one of the US’ top ultra cyclists, has increasingly put his athletic efforts into ultra running. Next on Chris’ hit list is the Moab 200, which starts October 13. I had to do a double-take to verify …

Racing

Race Across Oregon: Powered by Teamwork

Ultra endurance bike racers rely on their crew to get them to the finish line. From the outside, bike racing looks like an individual sport. After all, an individual crosses the finish line, and the first person to cross the line gets all of the accolades. In fact, bike racing …

Friends

Overnight Relay Races: Fun or Just a Smelly Van?

I hit “record” on my phone while my teammate climbed on top of our rented minivan and began to stretch. This is something I expect from her, she spent a good part of the trip ON TOP of the van versus INSIDE of it. It gets cramped, I understand. Less …

Adult beverages

A Ride Under the Randonneurs’ “Big Tent”

As the summer of 2016 waned, I realized it had been over a year since I had ridden with the Seattle International Randonneurs. I sent an email to the Randonneurs’ president Mark Thomas saying I urgently needed to maintain a glimmer of Rando credibility: “When can we ride?” Mark’s response …

Personalities

Not quite almost in Sarajevo: Doug Migden’s 2016 Transcontinental Race

Just got this message from Doug Migden who is getting closer to the finish of the 2016 Transcontinental from Geraardsbergen to Canakkale: “At a petrol station bar. On the M5. Had some 30 K per hour tailwinds. Only on the TCR do you do the Grosse Scheidig, Grimsel Pass, Furka …

Dangerous behavior

Doug Migden’s 2015 Transcontinental Race

I first learned about Doug Migden’s Transcontinental Race (TCR) project last September during a ride with Seattle Randonneurs Joe Platzner, Vincent Muoneke, and Mark Thomas. During the miles between breakfast and beers, Joe talked me through examples of the Seattle Rando’s “big tent” and how one of their tribe had …