Author Archives: Doug Mayer

The Irresistible Lure of Racing the Dents du Midi

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Some trail races just have it. It’s a vibe, a feeling you get from the moment you arrive. Everyone’s smiling, happy to be there. You’re meeting new friends and enjoying the atmosphere. You get the sense the volunteers have worked together for years, because they probably have. And, whatever happens on the course, you’re happy   Continue Reading →

Courmayeur in a Nut Shell

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This Run the Alps guest blog post is from US trail runner Tim Tollefson. Tim is a familiar face here in the Alps. He was second in UTMB’s CCC in 2015, and third last year in the UTMB. Tim has also qualified twice for the US Olympic Marathon Trials. He’s here in Chamonix now, getting   Continue Reading →

Around Mont Blanc with David Laney

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Editor’s note: It’s UTMB season in Chamonix, and trail runners from around the world are converging on the town. One of them is Ashland, Oregon-based David Laney, a friend of several of us here at Run the Alps. In this post, David shares his thoughts about trail running in and around the Mont Blanc region.   Continue Reading →

These are the Alps, Too

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I had been trail running for five hours. Well, the truth is, I hadn’t run much at all. While scoping out a route for a trail-running book project, I was supposed to be running, but rain, dense fog, and wind were conspiring to make the day challenging. Anticipating a thunderstorm for hours, I felt lucky   Continue Reading →

Join Ultrarunners Rob Krar and Brian Tinder in the Alps this September

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Sometimes, things just fall into place. That’s what happened this last month when Run the Alps’ friend Brian Tinder and fellow Flagstaff, Arizona runner Rob Krar announced they’d be taking part in the DDM Trail, one of the oldest trail races in the Alps. As a result, Run the Alps is able to offer a   Continue Reading →

Helmet Required: Courmayeur, Italy’s 2,200 Meter-high Sky Race

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Helmet required. It’s a phrase I had never seen when looking over the required gear list for a trail race. And it certainly piqued my interest. So, when the first edition of the Mont Blanc K2000 Skyrace in Courmayeur, Italy, debuted, I had to check it out. That was August 8, 2015, and it didn’t   Continue Reading →

Welcome to Italy. Now Go Up: Val di Susa’s Triple Vertical Kilometer

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Europeans love vertical races—and the more up, the better. Steep vertical kilometer or “VK” races are commonplace. They happen throughout the year, with trail running shoes giving way to snowshoes, climbing skins and other forms of winter traction, as grassy alpine slopes turn white in the winter months. Nowhere in the Alps do they love   Continue Reading →

DDM Trail: A Legendary Alps Trail Race is Back

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In the history of trail running in the Alps, there isn’t an event that goes back much farther than Trail des Dents-du-Midi, held each September in the Valais town of Champéry. The original race took place over four decades ago. (Check out this video to get a remarkable glimpse of trail racing in the early days.)   Continue Reading →

Aw, Shucks

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We get a lot of really nice reviews here at Run the Alps. Then, every now and then, we get a letter like this one — something that just stops us in our trail running shoes and reminds us why we love this work. Shannon, thanks. (And — oh! — read on for Simon’s response,   Continue Reading →

Julia Bleasdale on Trail Running in Switzerland’s Engadin

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A long, alpine valley tucked away on Switzerland’s border with Austria and Italy, the Engadin is a special place – quieter, wilder and more remote than much of the rest of the Swiss Alps. Harder to reach than Chamonix, Grindelwald or Zermatt, it seems to guard its own special beauty closely. British-German track and field   Continue Reading →