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Official Charity: Bald Head Island Conservancy Please Join and Donate today!

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Instagram: @BadwaterHQ (race director Chris Kostman, race entrant Keith Kostman, and Fort Fisher race staff Scott Kollins)


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Badwater heads to Mustang, Nepal! Track us via GPS!

In 2015, Badwater is going to a region of Nepal that even the Nepalese consider remote: The Kingdom of Mustang! It’s a dramatic, gorgeous, and exotic locale unlike anywhere else you’ve ever been, let alone run. To host this race and insure that the entire trip goes off fabulously, we have partnered with Richard Bull, organizer of Trail Running Nepal and the race director of the Mustang Trail Race and other events. He’s a British expat who has lived in Nepal for many years. His Mustang Trail Race is held annually in April, but in 2015 he is hosting a special “Badwater Presents” edition of that event in October, just for us.

Though the race course will be challenging, on rugged terrain at high altitudes, we believe it is the cultural experience that we will remember most, along with the camaraderie with fellow Badwater runners from around the globe. We are particularly pleased to mention that your Badwater race director, Chris Kostman, will be competing alongside everyone, as will his brother Keith Kostman, who has worked on the Badwater 135 webcast for more than ten years. It is now time for us to get “out there” and run with you!

The whole itinerary for the trip – from October 17 to 29 – is here and you can read much more about the event (also held annually in April) here.

Runner Tracking

You can track each runner’s movements via GPS with the Trackleaders.com service in the map embedded below. We have  “Stage Zero” hike on the 19th and then the actual race days will be October 20-22 and 24-28, so those are the days you should “see” movement below. All the data will also be archived and can be “replayed” after the race.

NOTE: Keep in mind that this service is provided for fun and for informational purposes. Accuracy, – and functionality, for that matter – is not guaranteed. Satellite coverage in the Mustang region of Nepal is not as comprehensive as in Europe and the USA, so the “ping rate” will not be as frequent. Also, it’s possible that a unit could have its battery die, it could be turned off, or it could be carried / mounted improperly and thus not have its antenna pointed towards the sky. So, if some particular runner is “not moving” or just not appearing, it’s almost certainly just a technical glitch. DO NOT CONTACT US OR TRACKLEADERS with any complaints or queries. We will be OFF THE GRID and NOT checking email. Thanks for tuning in, though, and for your support!

NOTE: How could our adventure in Nepal possibly have gotten any better? Well, running legend Lizzy Hawker (UTMB 5x champ, 100km world champ, 24-hour world record holder, and a Cambridge Ph.D) has just joined the race field! She will lead out the field each morning and do the course markings. Her Delorme unit will be embedded with our units, so you will be able to track her, too, via the map below.

Badwater Presents Mustang Trail Race Roster:

First Last Gender Age City State Country Nationality
Fabien Billaud Male 35 Singapore Singapore France
Arvid Olav Bratlie Male 54 Løten Hedemark Norway Norway
Richard Bull Male 43 Kathmandu Nepal United Kingdom
Jared Fetterolf Male 26 Austin TX United States United States
Gerald Godoy Male 48 Humble TX United States United States
Matt Ingram Male 52 Sydney NSW Australia Australia
Karla Kent Female 52 Las Vegas NV United States
Christopher Kostman Male 48 Oak Park CA United States United States
Keith Kostman Male 52 Minneapolis MN United States United States
Rebecca Le Baron Female 31 Boca Raton FL United States United States
Thomas Quirk Male 39 Zurich United States Switzerland
Jacob Reinbolt Male 56 San Diego CA United States United States
Russ Reinbolt Male 50 La Jolla CA United States United States
Norunn Solli Female 46 Furnes Norway Norway
Megan Steinebach Female 38 Delray Beach FL United States United States
Josette Valloton Female 51 Wallis Arolla Switzerland Switzerland

Supporting The Herren Project at the Hamptons Marathon

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Your faithful Badwater Race Director – that’s me, Chris Kostman –  was thrilled (and nervous) to be in East Hampton, NY to run the Hamptons Marathon on September 26 in support of The Herren Project. My longest training run was just ten miles and I had not run the marathon distance since I last did an Ironman, eight years ago. But I toed that starting line with a sense of purpose and calm because I was there on a mission and with an incredible team of people.

In the first photo below I am standing with two people I admire greatly: Pam Rickard is a Badwater Cape Fear and Badwater Salton Sea veteran and my dear friend, while Chris Herren is a retired NBA player who greeted me with a hug at our first meeting. Both are sober runners, testimony to The Power Of Recovery, and have dedicated their lives to helping others either avoid the need for recovery or to embrace it fully. I find them to be remarkable, humble, lovely people and I was honored to stand with them and the rest of our super group of 18 as we supported The Herren Project at the Hamptons Marathon!

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Yours truly with Pam Rickard and Chris Herren

Our supergroup of 18 runners supporting The Herren Project!

Our supergroup of 18 runners supporting The Herren Project!

It was an honor to support their mission and I thank all of those who supported THP with their generous donations! (Thanks to these generous folks, I more than doubled my original fundraising goal, raising a total of $3333!)

With the THP Runs team, the morning of the race!

With the THP Runs team, the morning of the race!

As for the marathon itself, I’ve spent my entire life in, around, organizing, and participating in endurance sports events and I can honestly state that this was easily the most fun I’ve ever had running! I literally had not one negative thought the entire day. I didn’t even turn on my music until the halfway mark. The camaraderie with all of the THP teammates was palpable. I never felt anonymous. I felt totally motivated by our cause – and that is a huge understatement.

Yours truly at Mile 11. Photo by Coach Pam Rickard.

Yours truly at Mile 11. Photo by Coach Pam Rickard.

Pam shot a selfie with every THP Runner she encountered on the course, and still placed 2nd in her age group!

Pam shot a selfie with every THP Runner she encountered on the course, and still placed 2nd in her age group!

When things got tough in the last 10 miles, I remembered what Coach Pam Rickard had said the night before about it being impossible to run 26.2 miles, that we can only run 1 mile at a time. That’s what I did. Crossing the finish line, I had given all I had, but I was completely filled up. I am so thankful to The Herren Project for this privilege and opportunity! I’ll be in their court for life. (And in fact, I hope to run the Boston Marathon in April on the THP Runs team!)

At the finish line, after four hours, forty-five minutes of running, with Hamptons Marathon race directors Amanda and Diane. They put on a world-class race!

At the finish line, after four hours, forty-five minutes of running, with Hamptons Marathon race directors Amanda and Diane. They put on a world-class race!

Thanks again to everyone for your support. It means a lot to me and all the generous donations really matter, and do something special. Thank you!

The morning after - what a gorgeous, serene, spectacular moment!

The morning after – what a gorgeous, serene, spectacular moment!

Insights and Inspiration from Al Arnold, Pioneer of Ultrarunning and Badwater!

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Al Arnold, age 49, atop Mt. Whitney after his successful run from Badwater in 1977.

Welcome to Badwater 2015. 40 years ago, on my second attempt at running from Badwater to Mt. Whitney, I got “cute” and frolicked across the Devil’s Golf Course and hyper-extended my knee: Stupid! So, stay focused, stay smart, and respect the importance of your being at the starting line of this year’s Badwater 135!

Chris Kostman, Race Director, has worked tirelessly in bringing the toughest ultramarathon in the world back to its namesake. His efforts to perpetuate this event require every participant, including non-runners and crew members, to recognize that you’re the guest of Death Valley National Park and that all rules and regulations of the Park and the Race Director must be respected. Disregard for these regulations will only lead to the prohibition of this and other ultra events through Death Valley National Park. Think about it: your actions determine the fate of this race!

I’m pleased, but not surprised, that Jack Denness, 80 years young, is continuing his amazing ultra resilience in completing ultramarathons. He completed the 2005 race at age 75 in 59 hours. He’s such a modest fellow. I now have marginal use of the lower half of my body, but I hope to return – as a fan and spectator – in 2018. I’ll be 90 and hope that Jack will return for another age record that year. 🙂

A Badwater Family Reunion is how many participants view this event: All efforts are extended in helping others in their effort to successfully complete this grueling event. The Badwater 135 requires each participant, regardless of experience, to stay focused on their own abilities and goals and to not lose them within the hype of the event.

My successful Badwater/Whitney trek of 1977 is still very vivid in my memory. I hope that yours will be as well and that you will subsequently become a Badwater Ambassador as you continue to further our extensions into the unknown of the human’s desire towards new quests.

Four decades of accumulated data and experience about running the Badwater 135 route state clearly that it is your responsibility to return home … safely and successful. Other than your fellow ultra athletes, few people understand your commitment. So, other than being polite, few are willing to listen to a “did-not-finisher”! (The only reason the media was interested in my two DNF’s in 1974 and 1975 is because the run had never been done. So, on my third, and successful attempt, in 1977 it was an international success.) My finishing time wasn’t an issue; it was all about completing the route. For most participants today, beating the cut-off-time is an issue. But, as I review the roster of remarkable athletes lining up for this year’s race, I believe all participants should finish below the time constraints.

Good luck, stay smart.

– IL VECCHIO, AL

NOTE: Al Arnold is the Neil Armstrong and Edmund Hillary of ultramarathons, the first to run between Badwater and Mount Whitney, back in 1977, after two failed attempts in 1974 and 1975. He became the first inductee into the Badwater Hall of Fame in 2002, on the 25th anniversary of his historic run, and remains a staunch friend and fan of the race. He lives in Walnut Creek, CA and is 87 years old. His birthday is February 4, 1928. He can be reached by email at alarnold1977 “at” msn.com and loves hearing from fellow ultrarunners. His essays are archived here on the Badwater.com website.

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Al Arnold, age 49 in 1977, gets in a last training run in Death Valley prior to becoming the first person to successfully run from Badwater to Mt. Whitney.

2015 Nutrimatix Badwater 135 Pre-Race Press Release

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

To download the full Press Release, Media Kit, and Credential Application in PDF format, click here.

Death Valley, CA: On July 28-30, AdventureCORPS presents its legendary Nutrimatix BADWATER® 135. Now in its 38th year, the world-renowned event pits up to 100 of the world’s toughest athletes against one another and the elements. In scorching temperatures and at altitudes as high as 8,300 feet, runners, triathletes, adventure racers, and mountaineers from 24 countries and 22 American states face off in a grueling 135-mile trek non-stop from Death Valley to Mt. Whitney, CA. Widely recognized as “the world’s toughest foot race, “ it is the most demanding and extreme running race on the planet.

The start line is at Badwater, Death Valley, which marks the lowest elevation in North America at 280’ (85m) below sea level. The race finishes at Whitney Portal at 8,300’ (2530m). The course covers three mountain ranges for a total of 14,600’ (4450m) of cumulative vertical ascent and 6,100’ (1859m) of cumulative descent. Whitney Portal is the trailhead to the Mt. Whitney summit, the highest point in the contiguous United States. Competitors travel through places with names like Mushroom Rock, Furnace Creek, Salt Creek, Devil’s Cornfield, Devil’s Golf Course, Stovepipe Wells, Panamint Springs, Keeler, Alabama Hills, and Lone Pine.

A true “challenge of the champions,” the 2015 Nutrimatix Badwater 135 features 59 Badwater veterans and 38 rookies: die hard “ultra-runners” of every speed and ability, as well a athletes who have the necessary running credentials, but are primarily known for their exploits as adventure racers, mountaineers, triathletes, or in other extreme pursuits. With the most international field in race history, the athletes represent twenty-four countries by citizenship or residence: Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Colombia, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Guatemala, Ireland, Japan, Jordan, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Philippines, Poland, Serbia, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom, and United States of America (with 22 different American states represented).

While runners began running the course in the 1970s, the race itself has been part of the fabric of life in Inyo County since 1987. A recent study indicated an annual economic impact of 1.2 million dollars, half of it spent in Death Valley National Park and surrounding gateway communities such as Lone Pine, CA. The race is supported by U.S. Congressman Col. Paul Cook (Ret.) of California’s 8th District, the Inyo County Board of Supervisors, the Lone Pine Chamber of Commerce, and a wide panorama of businesses and charities which are positively impacted.

There are 29 women and 68 men. The youngest runner is 22 (rookie entrant Breanna Cornell of Florence, AL) while the oldest is 80 (14-time competitor Jack Denness of Rochesteer, United Kingdom), with an average age of 46. Full roster details are available here: http://dbase.adventurecorps.com/roster.php?bw_eid=74&bw=Go

The men’s course record is held by Valmir Nunez of Brazil with a time of 22:51:29 set in 2007, while the women’s course record of 26:16:12 was set in 2010 by Jamie Donaldson of Littleton, CO. It is expected that the winner of the 2015 Nutrimatix Badwater 135 will finish in under 24 hours. The average finishing time is approximately 40 hours, while the overall time limit is 48 hours. For those who finish in less than forty-eight hours, their reward is the coveted Badwater 135 belt buckle, pictured below. There is no prize money.

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The 2015 race field is particularly competitive. Veteran contenders include 2007 champion and course record holder Valmir Nunez of Brazil, 2014 champion Harvey Lewis of Ohio, 2011 men’s champion Oswaldo Lopez of Madera, CA (Mexico citizenship), two-time men’s runner-up Grant Maughan of Australia, and other notable contenders.

The women’s field, with 29 entrants, includes 13 rookies and 16 veterans. Contenders include the 2014 women’s champion, Alyson Venti, 33, of New York, NY and Pam Reed, 54, of Jackson, WY, the 2002 and 2003 overall champion who also won the women’s field in 2005 and was the second female in 2012, 2013, and 2014.

Every year is a new year at the Badwater 135, with rookies and “previously unknown” athletes surprising the contenders with top performances. New stars will shine as the race unfolds.

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The Nutrimatix Badwater 135 is the final event in the Badwater® Ultra Cup, a three-race series which began with the 51-mile Badwater® Cape Fear in March, continued with the 81-mile Badwater® Salton Sea in May, and now concludes with the Nutrimatix Badwater 135 in July. Those runners who complete all three events in the same calendar year are featured on the Badwater.com website and their virtues are extolled throughout the Internet and in future editions of BADWATER Magazine. In 2014, seven remarkable athletes completed the entire Badwater Ultra Cup, while this year ten have completed the first two Badwater races and will toe the line at the third and final race. Info: http://www.badwater.com/event/badwater-ultra-cup/

NutrimatixNow in its sixteenth year producing this race, AdventureCORPS is pleased to welcome a new title sponsor, Nutrimatix, makers of the world’s best tasting, all-natural vitamin powder sticks, blended using a combination of personal fitness data and responses to an interactive lifestyle questionnaire. These customized supplements are backed by real science and more than 30 years of pharmaceutical and exercise research, as well as through three consecutive Badwater 135 finishes by the company’s founder and CEO, Sergio Radovcic. We also greatly appreciate the support of Caring House Project Foundation, ZZYXXZ, Nathan Performance Gear, and ZombieRunner.com, plus the local support of Furnace Creek Ranch, Stovepipe Wells Resort, Panamint Springs Resort, Dow Villa, Pizza Factory, the community of Lone Pine, CA, the people of Inyo County, and other generous companies and individuals. More info: http://www.badwater.com/about-us/sponsors/

Official Charities of the Badwater 135 include the Challenged Athletes Foundation. As one of the very few charities that provides grants directly to athletes with a physical disability, the Challenged Athletes Foundation has raised over thirty million dollars and directly assisted thousands of challenged athletes world-wide. AdventureCORPS also supports the Bald Head Island Conservancy, Conservation Alliance, and One Percent For The Planet. One of the goals of the Badwater 135 is to raise funds for, and awareness of, these organizations. More info: http://www.badwater.com/about-us/charities/

This year, over 50 of the race entrants are competing on behalf of a charity of their choice. Some of those include Be Change, Caring House Project Foundation, Challenged Athletes Foundation, Death Valley Natural History Association, Hope So Bright, Operation Eyesight Universal, Running Works, The Herren Project, and others.

This year’s race celebrates the 38th anniversary of Al Arnold’s original trek from Badwater to Mt. Whitney in 1977. Arnold, an ultrarunning pioneer and human potential guru, competed in a solo effort: it was just Arnold and his support crew against the elements and the clock. The official head-to-head race began ten years after Arnold’s pioneer trek, in 1987, and has been held annually without serious incident, fatality, or any citations issued by any branch of law enforcement. For more info about Al Arnold and also the original race click these links:

1977 Al Arnold: http://www.badwater.com/blog/category/al-arnolds-insights/

1987 Race: http://www.badwater.com/blog/1987-the-year-badwater-became-a-race/


WEBCAST, RACE UPDATES, PRESS CREDENTIALS, AND FURTHER INFO:

To download the full Press Release, Media Kit, and Credential Application in PDF format, click here.

A stock image gallery – for bona fide media use only – may be accessed at the following link, with Photographer Name / Badwater.com attribution required: www.flickr.com/photos/chriskostman/sets/72157654693333871

For the duration of the 2015 race, fans can follow the race through a “live” webcast at http://www.badwater.com/2015-badwater135-webcast/

Download the current issue of BADWATER Magazine here:
http://www.adventurecorps.com/downloads/bw/2015July.pdf

The Badwater 135 is held under permits from Death Valley National Park, California Department of Transportation, Inyo National Forest, and Inyo County. Media attending the event may be required to obtain permits from some of those same agencies.


CONTACT:

AdventureCORPS, Inc.

Chris Kostman, Race Director and Chief Adventure Officer

638 Lindero Canyon Road, #311 Oak Park, CA 91377 USA

Email: adventurecorps at gmail dot com

ABOUT ADVENTURECORPS, INC.:

Oak Park, CA-based AdventureCORPS®, Inc. is an athlete-run firm producing and promoting ultra-endurance sports events and the world’s toughest brand, BADWATER®. AdventureCORPS’ world-class events for athlete-adventurers include epic races such as the Badwater® 135, BADWATER® Salton Sea, BADWATER® Cape Fear, and Silver State 508™, and other events. AdventureCORPS products include Badwater® Apparel, Badwater® Skin Care, Badwater® Gear, as well as other great lifestyle items and services. Founded in 1984 by Chris Kostman, this group effort is dedicated to exploring the inner and outer universes, seeking adventure, energy, and insight both in daily life and “out there.” More info: www.adventurecorps.com and www.badwater.com. Badwater® is a registered trademark owned by AdventureCORPS, Inc.


FOLLOWING THE BADWATER 135 ONLINE

Follow the 2015 webcast at:

http://www.badwater.com/2015-badwater135-webcast/

 

Follow the time splits and results at:

http://dbase.adventurecorps.com/results.php?bw_eid=74&bwr=Go

 

Follow the race on Twitter via @Badwater (Join the conversation by adding hashtag #Badwater135 to all your tweets about the race.):

http://twitter.com/badwater

 

Follow the race staff’s live photostream on Instagram via @BadwaterHQ (Contribute to the photostream by adding hashtag #Badwater135 to all your IG images about the race.):

http://instagram.com/badwaterHQ

 

Follow the race director’s live photostream on Instagram via @ChrisKostman :

http://instagram.com/chriskostman

 

Follow the race staff’s photostream archive on Flickr:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/adventurecorps/

 

Follow the race director’s photostream archive on Flickr:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/chriskostman/

 

Follow the photostream of runners and crew members on Flickr (Racers and crews who are members of the group may submit up to 25 photos per day during the race and afterward.):

http://www.flickr.com/groups/badwater135

 

Join the Facebook conversation:

http://www.facebook.com/badwater135

2015 July issue of BADWATER® Magazine

We are pleased to announce that the July 2015 issue of BADWATER® Magazine is available as a 10MB PDF download now. It’s 60 pages, full-color, and the biggest and best edition yet of our magazine that celebrates the BADWATER way of life!

Special thanks to Kevin Fung for the design, Bob Corman for the printing, and all the great photographers, writers, and athletes who make the whole thing come to life and look awesome!

Click here to download it: 2015July BADWATER

Want a hard copy? Send $15 via Paypal to adventurecorps at gmail.com and be sure to include your name and mailing address ($20 if outside the USA). They will be printed next week. Every 2015 Badwater 135 entrant and staffer will receive a hard copy at the July 28-30 Badwater 135. Enjoy!

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Badwater 135 Revisited: Tips from a 15-time Competitor

By Arthur Webb

I “completed” the 135-mile Badwater Ultramarathon 15 times and earned 14 buckles. At the 2012 Badwater 135 race, at age 70, I set two personal records: A 33:45 finish (by 12 minutes), and a 23:55 at 100 miles (I had never broken 24 hours on this course) and eclipsed the age group record by more than 20 hours.

During those 15 years I tried everything to reach goals. Some things worked and others were complete failures. After 13 years of “experimenting” I finally found the right combinations and it was all worthwhile. We paid strict attention and followed to a “T” the formula listed below, which was the key to peak performances (fewer troubles/problems and pain free) during my last two successful Badwater races.

*I wanted to share this valuable information with first time entrants and/or veterans still looking for a few magic ingredients.

  • Liquids: I weighed at the end of my training regimen, before going to Badwater. That was my target weight. I usually drank more water hanging around Badwater and tended to become “over- or super-hydrated” which was reflected at weigh-in. We used a scale during the race and once the “excess” water was sloughed off and the target weight was reached, we kept it within 2 pounds (high or low). It worked. It’s number one on this list for a reason. In the past too little or too much water (it doesn’t take much) caused way too many nasty problems, which led to diminishing returns and debilitating performance. Thirty ounces or less an hour is more than sufficient for the system to work efficiently. (We charted all food and water intake).
  • Electrolytes: For ten years I used Hammer’s Endurolytes (2 to 8 capsules an hour depending on the heat) and had only a few cramping problems (abated by downing a few more) and zero side effects. They work.
  • Nutrition: One bottle of ice cold Ensure (240 calories) worked better than solid foods, but 240 calories an hour of Hammer’s Perpetuem by far worked the best. More than 240 calories an hour (of anything) will tax the system and performance will suffer.
  • Clothing: White short sleeved wicking shirt, compression shorts and Moeben compression arm and leg sleeves and head scarf (soaked in cold water) was miles ahead of anything else and by far the most comfortable and effective apparel.
  • Power walked: All the bigger hills, especially Towne Pass, Father Crowley, and Mt. Whitney. Paid rich dividends.
  • Stay wet: My crew used an assortment of sprayers and soakers filled with ice water during the heat of the day (on me and themselves), which helped keep core temps near normal. I carried a small 8-10 ounce sprayer filled with ice cold water the entire race and constantly spritzed my head and face and any hot spots. My pacer carried a larger sprayer and wet my clothing, arms, legs and head during the heat of the day. Don’t dry out.
  • Shorten the course: Between Furnace Creek and Lone Pine there are ½ mile markers on the right side of the road (example: mile 110.5, to Lone Pine, across from the Chevron Station at Furnace Creek) and mile markers on the left side of the road (example: mile 110 a half mile past Chevron Station heading north). They were my landmarks. An extremely huge benefit was knowing exactly where I was at all times, which helped maintain focus on pre-race plans, race pace and shortened the Badwater course to mentally pleasing ½ mile segments. It worked. Could easily be number one on this list.
  • Blisters: Lightweight white socks filled with Gold Bond Foot Powder prevented blisters, even when my feet were (soaking) wet. I never tapped my feet. Before the powder routine I simply cut the blisters (some were big and ugly) and kept going. A very minor inconvenience. They all heal eventually.
  • Keep moving: I took a much needed potty break and had a quick leg massage at Father Crowley’s Viewpoint (mile-80) and a few 5-minute or less breaks on the “uncomfortable” stoop of the van. That’s it. I stayed out of the “too” comfortable check-in stations, chairs, and the van. Besides, rest, cold beer and pizza awaited at Whitney Portal.
  • Course knowledge: I had the advantage of knowing all the nuances of the Badwater 135 course, but still spent many hours virtually running and studying the entire route on Google Earth (in street view). I even marked (pinpointed) each mile. It’s a convenient tool and productive mental exercise easily accomplished in the comforts of home.
  • Stay positive, focused and finish: Grumbling and making excuses (remember who signed the entry form) is another self-defeating slippery slope. When the wheels start to come off (and they will; possibly many times) stand tall. Remember there are other runners/walkers/shufflers on the Badwater course that feel just as bad or worse but will fight off all the miserable suffering and manage to finish. Besides not one crew person has ever volunteered their valuable time and energy at Badwater to watch a runner quit.

The trek from Badwater across the Death Valley Basin and over several mountain ranges to the finish line on the flanks of Mt. Whitney is incredibly difficult. It will test you emotionally, physically, mentally and spiritually. Yet, it’s a powerful rewarding experience that’s guaranteed to influence and enrich your life forever.

I do miss it so.

Life is Grand.

“There are those people who say they can. And there are those people who say they can’t. They are both right.”

“Do or not do. There is no try.”   – Yoda, “Star Wars”

Any questions, send me a note: Runerof100 at aol.com

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Art Webb at the 2012 finish line, after setting a PR at age 70 and new age group course record.

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Art Webb at the 2012 finish line, after setting a PR at age 70 and new age group course record.

 

Badwater 135: Designated Parking Zones from Mile 72.7 to Mile 84.9

As per new guidelines from the National Park Service:

On the Father Crowley / Panamint Pass climb (a 12.2-mile stretch from Time Station 3 at Panamint Springs Resort at Mile 72.7 to “Panamint Pass” at Mile 84.9), support vehicles may only stop at eight designated locations along the route. These will be identified in the route book and with signage along the roadway. They are located 1.8, 3.4, 4.7, 5.3, 7.9, 8.7, 10.5, and 12.2 miles beyond Panamint Springs Resort. Except in a legitimate emergency situation, stopping at any other location along this stretch of roadway, even momentarily, will result in the immediate disqualification of the racer associated with the stopped crew. In addition to Badwater race staff, this will also be monitored by National Park Service staff who have the authority to disqualify racers. The photos depict the six designated parking zones.

Furthermore, crew members, other than pacers, may never cross the roadway during the entire Father Crowley / Panamint Pass climb (a 12.2-mile stretch from Time Station 3 at Panamint Springs Resort at Mile 72.7 to “Panamint Pass” at Mile 84.9). Also, each racer, or racer’s pacer, is strongly encouraged to carry a walkie-talkie for communicating with his or her support crew during this 12.2-mile stretch of the race route. In addition to Badwater race staff, this will also be monitored by National Park Service staff who have the authority to disqualify racers.

Because there is limited parking at the designated eight parking zones, and because, of course, support vehicles can make this ascent far faster than runners, support teams are encouraged to remain at Panamint Springs Resort long enough to give their runner a good “head start” while he or she begins the ascent. (This also allows time for the support team to purchase water, ice, food, supplies, gas, and REAL FOOD at Panamint Springs Resort.)

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Parking Zone #1: Located at Mile 74.5, or 1.8 miles beyond Panamint Springs Resort. “Parking Allowed on Right in gravel pullout with yellow left arrow.”

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Parking Zone #2: Located at Mile 76.1, or 3.4 miles beyond Panamint Springs Resort. “Parking Allowed on Right in small gravel pullout on right.”

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Parking Zone #3 (new for 2016): Located at Mile 77.4, or 4.7 miles beyond Panamint Springs Resort. “Parking Allowed on Right in large gravel shoulder on right.”

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Parking Zone #4: Located at Mile 78.1, or 5.3 miles beyond Panamint Springs Resort. “Parking Allowed in large gravel pullout on left just before sweeping left-hand curve.”

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Parking Zone #5: Located at Mile 80.6, or 7.9 miles beyond Panamint Springs Resort. “Parking Allowed in parking lot at Father Crowley’s viewpoint parking lot.” NOTE: Please no sleeping on the ground in parking spaces!

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Parking Zone #6 (new for 2016): Located at Mile 81.4, or 8.7 miles beyond Panamint Springs Resort. “Parking Allowed in elevated lot accessed via small driveway on right.” NOTE: This is the best place to view the Air Force jets which often “strafe” the runners during the race!

Parking Zone #7: Located at Mile 83.2, or 10.5 miles beyond Panamint Springs Resort. "Parking Allowed in wide gravel pullout on right."

Parking Zone #7: Located at Mile 83.2, or 10.5 miles beyond Panamint Springs Resort. “Parking Allowed in wide gravel pullout on right.”

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Parking Zone #8 at “Panamint Pass” (unsigned, but just before a 65 MPH speed limit sign): Located at Mile 84.9, or 12.2 miles beyond Panamint Springs Resort. “Parking Allowed on right in large gravel pullout.” Support vehicles may resume parking wherever it is safe and prudent to do so from here onwards. Time Station #4 at the Darwin turnoff is just 5.7 miles ahead.

Additionally, support vehicles may not stop during the one-mile stretch which begins at Harmony Borax Works at Mile 19.1 (just after leaving Furnace Creek), while runners pass through the curvy “Harmony Curves” section of Hwy 190. Each support vehicle should wait at Harmony Borax Works long enough to allow the runner to cover the next, mostly uphill mile, then drive ahead (no stopping nor slowing until Mile 20.1).

For all the race route details, click here.

High-Visibility Garment Requirements for Badwater 135

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This BADWATER ZZYXXZ short-sleeve shirt meets OSHA Class 2 Reflectivity Requirements for use during the day (but not at night).

 

The race rules continue to evolve in conjunction with new directives from, and negotiations with, the National Park Service. It is imperative that all racers and ALL crew members are studying the race rules regularly and very closely.

Today we want to bring your attention in particular to the new rules regarding high-visibility clothing required for all crew members (not pacers, not racers), which were instituted by the National Park Service, NOT by AdventureCORPS / Badwater:

New regulations for sporting events held within Death Valley National Park require that ALL support crew members for the Badwater 135 wear a minimum of OSHA Class 2 (or higher) high-visibility clothing during daylight hours, and OSHA Class 3 high-visibility clothing during nighttime hours. These regulations may ONLY be met by wearing the special garments pictured below and developed by ZZYXXZ in collaboration with BADWATER and which can be pre-ordered at this link for pick-up in Furnace Creek on July 27

The alternative is wearing certified OSHA Class 2 (in daytime) and Class 3 (at nighttime, or night + day) vests / jackets, such as those worn by highway workers, as in these two examples: Example 1 | Example 2.

Please note that running-type reflective vests, such as those by Nathan Sports, do NOT meet OSHA Class 2 or Class 3 requirements.

NOTE: Racers, and Pacers when allowed, may dress as they choose during daylight, and must wear 360 degree reflectivity (such as runner-type vests by Nathan Sports) and front and rear blinky lights at night. Racers and Pacers are not required to wear the specific OSHA Class 2 or OSHA Class 3 garments that are required for all crew members, though that level of high-contrast reflectivity and visibility is highly recommended for racers and pacers, too.

In addition to the requisite reflective garments, all crew members, pacers, and racers must wear front and rear blinky lights whenever they are outside of a motor vehicle during nighttime.

To pre-order the Class 2 short-sleeve shirts for during the day and Class 3 long-sleeve shirts for during the night (and day also, if desired), please click here. Orders must be submitted by June 15 so that ZZYXXZ can have your garments ready for you during Racer Check-In on July 27.

TO BE CLEAR: All crew members MUST wear these shirts, OR must wear certified OSHA Class 2 (in daytime) and Class 3 (at nighttime, or night AND day) vests / jackets, such as those worn by highway workers, as in the examples cited above.

AT RACER CHECK-IN: All racers must display a minimum of two running-style reflective vests – which will be worn and utilized by the racer and pacer (if any) during nighttime periods of the race – and eight blinking red lights for racers, pacers, and crew members to wear at night. Also during Racer Check-In, all entrants must display one OSHA Class 2 reflectivity garment for each crew member to wear during the day, and one OSHA Class 3 reflectivity garment for each crew member to wear during the night.

Thank you for your close attention to these matters and for quickly ordering the necessary garments to meet these rules.

This BADWATER ZZYXXZ long-sleeve shirt meets OSHA Class 3 Reflectivity Requirements for use during the day.

This BADWATER ZZYXXZ long-sleeve shirt meets OSHA Class 3 Reflectivity Requirements for use at night (and also during the day if preferred).

2015 Badwater 135 Belt Buckle and Commemorative Coin

We are very excited to take the legendary Badwater 135 belt buckle – the holy grail of ultra running and endurance sports – in a new direction this year, and we found the perfect partners for doing so. First, in Lone Pine over the winter, we met Judyth Greenburgh of Darwin, CA (yes, Darwin, near mile 90 of the race route), who is a remarkable artist, fascinating woman, and a very legit desert denizen. After a visit to Darwin to get to know her, tour the area, and discuss the belt buckle art concept, she got to work on the design. She immediately “got” the concept, made it her own, and wildly exceeded our expectations.

Next, we met Kim Ashworth at Badwater Cape Fear in March. A marathoner, she was there to support her sister, Kelly Facteau, who was competing in the race. Their father, George Lavallee, made a point of telling me that they ran an awards company based in Boston. When I met Kim, she confirmed that they do, indeed, produce their awards domestically, including for the Boston Marathon, and I was thrilled to learn that. (We’d been told my many other awards companies that nobody produced such items in the USA anymore.) Thus Ashworth Awards became our new awards manufacturer, because we believe in supporting AmericaStrong companies.

The result of these two new collaborators is depicted here: the 2015 Badwater 135 belt buckle design, as well as a commemorative coin we’ll have available this year which features the centerpiece of the new art, but references 1977, the year that Al Arnold made his original, ground-breaking, history-making run from Badwater to Mt. Whitney.

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We’ll post photos of both items in July, once the actual finished products are in hand. As always, the buckles will only be awarded to Official Finishers of the 2015 Badwater 135, while the coins will be available for sale to anyone at the race, and through the Badwater Store hosted by our friends (and Badwater 135 veterans) at Zombie Runner.

2015BW135bucklecoinAs for the origin and inspiration for the art itself, we will save that story for another post, but we will say that it is directly associated with the history and concept behind the new, overall BADWATER® brand logo we started using last year:

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