The Grand Slam of Ultrarunning is a prestigious and challenging feat accomplished by only a few elite ultrarunners each year. It involves completing four of the oldest and toughest 100-mile trail races in the United States within a single year. The races included in the Grand Slam are:
- Western States 100-Mile Endurance Run: This is the oldest and most renowned ultramarathon in the world, held in California. The race takes participants through the Sierra Nevada Mountains, with a grueling terrain that includes steep climbs, rocky trails, and scorching heat.
- Vermont 100-Mile Endurance Run: Located in Vermont, this race showcases the picturesque beauty of the Green Mountains. Runners navigate rugged trails, dense forests, and challenging elevation changes. The course includes multiple river crossings, which adds to the difficulty.
- Leadville Trail 100-Mile Run: Held in the Colorado Rockies, this race is famous for its high altitude. Starting and finishing in the town of Leadville, the course reaches elevations over 12,000 feet (3,700 meters), testing runners’ endurance in thin air. The race includes steep climbs and descents through mountainous terrain.
- Wasatch Front 100-Mile Endurance Run: Set in Utah, this race takes participants through the stunning Wasatch Mountains. The course features a mix of technical trails, steep climbs, and breathtaking scenery. The race is known for its challenging climbs, including the notorious “Big Mountain” and “Snowbasin” sections.
To complete the Grand Slam, runners must finish all four races within the designated time frame, usually spanning from June to September. The demanding nature of these races, coupled with the short recovery time between events, makes it an extraordinary accomplishment in the ultrarunning community.
The Grand Slam of Ultrarunning requires not only exceptional physical fitness but also mental fortitude, strategic planning, and an unwavering commitment to enduring grueling conditions. Participants must overcome extreme fatigue, sleep deprivation, unpredictable weather, and relentless terrain to reach the finish line of each race.
Successfully completing the Grand Slam is regarded as a pinnacle achievement in ultrarunning, earning runners immense respect and recognition within the sport. It demonstrates remarkable endurance, perseverance, and a deep passion for challenging the limits of human performance in long-distance trail running.
The Vermont 100 Endurance Race is an annual premier ultra trail event in July and a Grand Slam of Ultrarunning event. Racers can register for either the 100-mile or the 100-km race. Although the roots of the event go back to the 1960s, the endurance event as we know it today was established in 1989…
The Wasatch Front 100 also known as "100 miles of heaven and hell", is one of the most uniquely challenging ultrarunning events in the world. This prestigious 100 mile endurance run is the culminating event in the Grand Slam of Ultra-Running series. It is held in Utah the first Friday and Saturday after Labor Day…