The triple crown of 200s are three ultra races that take place in Washington, California, and Utah. These races are 200 miles each, so completing all three would total 600 miles of racing in eight weeks. The race directors of the triple crown have placed an emphasis on scenic and non-repetitive routes, a big feat for races that long. Destination trail, the running event company behind the triple crown, believes that an appreciation of nature through physical activity will help preserve wild spaces.
Candice Burt, the race director and CEO of Destination Trail, wanted to create the ultimate challenge for trail runners. Burt didn’t want the 200 miles to be redundant, she wanted an exciting and inspiring route that would encourage trail runners to embrace the adventure.
The first of the races is the BigFoot 200 which starts August 10th and is a peak to peak exploration of the Cascade Mountains in Washington state. This race is primarily single track and reaches high elevation with roughly 50, 000ft of ascent. The second race is the Tahoe 200 which starts September 7th. The Tahoe 200 is the first single loop mountain race in the USA. This races provides stunning views and the ability to circle the entirety of gorgeous Lake Tahoe. The final race is the Moab 240 which starts October 12th. Moab has less elevation gain than the other two courses, but, the extreme change in temperature will present challenges of its own.
With only four weeks to recover between each race the triple crown seems like a nearly impossible challenge, but in 2015 a Canadian managed to achieve the crown. Rick Arikado of Vancouver, BC was the 2015 first place finisher. Arikado had already completed several 100 mile races by 2010 so moving up in distance was a natural progression.
The triple crown races are beautiful and certainly events to keep on your radar when planning your competitive season. But as a suggestion; maybe start with one before you conquer all three.