The Boulder Mountain Tour was last cancelled in 1983. Mother Nature decided to end that lucky streak for the 40th running of the race on Saturday, February 7, 2015.
Cancellation was the LAST thing on our minds on Saturday. The forecast heading into race day was well monitored by all agencies involved. We were prepared for the high likelihood of large amounts of snow accumulation and possibly rain. However, no one could have predicted and/or planned for the trees that fell across the trail after the final grooming had taken place in the early hours of race morning. The groomers had already removed 6 as they made their final pass. Once the race was officially cancelled, around 7:20am, the Chief of Start and his crew of volunteers began disassembling the start area. Once completed, a small crew headed down the course from Galena to pull signs around 11:00 am. They encountered their first tree between Hawk Hill and the old BMT road crossing. Over the next four hours they removed 22 downed trees from the trail. Meanwhile, Ed Canady, Head of the Sawtooth National Recreation Area, and Janet Kellam, former Chief forecaster for the Sawtooth Avalanche Center, were down near the 5 km mark at Murphy's Bridge closing a section of the trail because 2 wet slides had come down there. As they were flagging the area, a slide came down that stopped at the edge of the trail. They drove on up to Baker creek, parked and skied up the trail to an area of concern near the 16 km mark. As they approached, they encountered a 4" diameter lodge pole dangling from a live power line directly over the Harriman Trail at about waist height. The cumulation of these unknown factors leaves me with no doubt that our Chief of Course made the right decision in the best interest of everyone's safety. One of the questions being asked is, "Why wasn't there postponement?" Thank God we didn't, because those 22 trees would have been coming down during the race! And as for rescheduling the race on Sunday, the complexity of the emergency infrastructure that needs to be in place by the ITD, the Idaho State Police, the Blaine County Sheriff, the Ketchum and Sun Valley Fire Departments, Road Work Ahead and the Galena Back Country Ski Patrol, not to mention our community volunteers, makes it nearly impossible to reschedule on short notice.
Above all else, the safety of our participants, as well as nearly 300 volunteers, is the number one priority of the Boulder Mountain Tour and it's directors. It is a race unique to many with regard to its location along a stretch of highway maintained and controlled by the Idaho Transportation Department. We have a very narrow window in which to safely transport 900 + skiers from Ketchum to the start at Galena Lodge. When that window closes, as it did on Saturday, there isn't another opportunity.
We sincerely thank you for your understanding and hope to see you next year. BMT 2016 is Saturday, February 6. Please look for announcements in the coming months regarding discounts on registration for those unable to race this year.
Here's to more snow and lots of it!
BMT Race Directors
Do you still have your Timing chip?
PLEASE PUT IT IN A PADDED ENVELOPE, AFFIX THE PROPER POSTAGE, AND MAIL IT TO:
MILLISECONDS SPORTS TIMING
PO BOX 581273
SALT LAKE CITY, UT 84158
Due to Mother Nature's unpredictable ways, in 2014 we were forced to alter our course slightly. This resulted in a few added K's but a much safer and smoother road crossing at the top end of the course. Based on very postive survey feedback, we decided to make the change permanent!
For those of you who weren't here for the inaugural event, come join us this year and see for yourself!
First, thanks again for putting on such an amazing event!
This town and this race is really cool and it's really
something to be proud of.
The new start was great I thought. It did a good job at
kind of breaking up the group a little bit, stringing it
out. Up Hawk Hill, we tried to put another push in to
string it out again. We had about 14 with us at that point.
Colin, Matt, Mike, and Miles moved to the front which made
me nervous for some reason but it probably was just their
intimidating matching fights. We worked as a group for
awhile pushing fairly hard on the uphills until we reached
Prairie Creek where our group had shrunk to 7. I heard
that Colin had broken a pole and Brent Knight had given
his to Colin. Nice guy!
A little while after this while taking some of our feeds,
Patrick Johnson got quite a lead by the first preem. We
chased him down and the group got back together about 3k
later. A little tired from chasing, Patrick continued to
lead until Frostbite Flats where I took over and led the
group to the next preem. At the preem, Matt Gelso and I were
together and decided we should go for it. We switched off
leads for the next 5km and then with 500m to go I thought I
better not chance it with the 2005 Junior National Skate
Sprint Champion and went for it early. It was enough to hold
I'm very happy with the result. I've been feeling really good
this year. I love coming back to Sun Valley because of the
people and the Nordic culture that surrounds the town. It is
something I'd love to see in my hometown of Vail someday.
Thanks again for putting on such a stellar race and helping
keep athletes like myself and SVSEF athletes out on the trails
by putting cash in our pockets. It really makes THE difference!
Sun Valley Nordic Festival Dates
January 30 through February 8, 2015
Boulder Mountain Tour 2013 - Lead group coming into the finish.
NordicTownUSA.com, The Sun Valley Nordic Festival and The Boulder Mountain Tour form the backbone of the effort to bring the world to Sun Valley. Independent groups, organizations and individuals such as The Vamps, Sun Valley Nordic, The Blaine County Recreation District, Galena Lodge, The Sun Valley Ski Education Foundation, businesses and individuals have all come together to help form the best Nordic experience on the planet.
Come to Sun Valley, Idaho and enjoy everything NordicTownUSA has to offer.