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By Kirsten Le Roux
Special to The SUN
This Saturday, Aug. 23, be part of the Devil Mountain Ultra Running experience. GECKO (Giving Every Child Knowledge of the Outdoors) is staging a 50-mile and 50k ultra trail run, starting and finishing in the national forest in Turkey Springs. Runners will traverse Chris Mountain, Horse Mountain, Middle Mountain and Devil Mountain along a scenic and sometimes rugged trail.
Themed for Devil Mountain, one of the trail’s major climbs, the race has a reputation as “One Hell of a Run!”
Finishers will receive pitchfork medals and winners will earn devil mask handcrafted trophies. This year, the lead-out man in the dawn light will be an eerie dementor on horseback.
To encourage everyone to get outdoors for a great cause, GECKO has added the Demons of Dust series trail run to the day. This is a half marathon at 8 a.m., a 5k and 10k at 9 a.m. and a kids’ free fun trail run at 10 a.m. (organized by the GOAL Academy). The 5k (3-mile) distance is perfect for anyone wanting to get outdoors — walk, hike, jog, shuffle, run, bring the family and get on the trails.
This is a festive day out in a beautiful area of Pagosa Springs, and watching the ultra runners finish their personal crusade to traverse 30 to 50 miles of remote and wild mountain trails is very inspiring.
Registration on the day is one hour before each event start time, with the exception of the ultra which closes on Thursday.
Saturday, Aug. 23, 6:30 a.m.: 50k and 50-mile (Devil Mountain Ultra).
8 a.m.: 1/2 marathon (Demons of Dust Trail Run).
9 a.m.: 10k and 5k (Demons of Dust Trail Run).
10 a.m.: Kids’ free fun trail run.
Location: Start/finish compound is at the corner of Turkey Springs and East Monument roads.
To register for any of the five distances, go to www.joingecko.org/devilmountain. Registration is open on Friday night or on race day for Demons of Dust only. Registration for the ultra closes midday on Thursday, Aug. 21.
To be part of the action — as a spectator, volunteer or sponsor — contact race director Mike Le Roux at 398-0612 or firstname.lastname@example.org, or GECKO founder Morgan Murri at (303) 475-6053 or email@example.com.