This weekend the wife and I headed up to the Duluth area to participate in a UMTR member’s fatass. For non-runners, a fatass means no prizes, no aid, no whining. It’s basically just a big fun run with a pot luck at the end. The course that this one was on was the Superior Hiking Trail south of Duluth, following the Wild Duluth 50K race.
We had decided to only do a portion of the course, but we still met up with everyone at the beginning before getting a ride to where we were starting. From the Magney-Snively trailhead, the course follows some majestic Minnesota mountains towards Ely’s Peak. It’s a very difficult and technical course, but you’re rewarded with amazing views. Eventually we came down from the hills and got to experience the SHT on the south side of Becks Road for the first time. This portion is incredibly runnable, with beautifully cleared trail. However, it’s not without elevation change. It was a constant up and down and was relentless in burning up your legs.
Since we didn’t need a ton of miles, we took a shortcut towards the end and called it good at 10.5 miles in 3:40. It wasn’t quite as far as we had planned, but when the SHT is involved you never get the miles you thought you would. Yet, it’s one of the most beautiful resources for runners, hikers and outdoor people in the region. It’s filled with amazing terrain, and spectacular vistas of northern Minnesota. It’s a cruel mistress, but one we keep coming back to again and again.