Southern Utah News Articles
Grandto Grand Ultra 2019 balmy and brutal
The weather was ‘perfect’ – no wind, no rain, no hail, not too hot, not too cold. Yet 24 percent of the 2019 G2G entrants did not finish, or DNF’d. An elite runner who had placed fifth at Marathon des Sables dropped because he couldn’t keep any food down. Some had old injuries plague them, and others just didn’t comprehend how hard G2G would be. If you’ve never run a marathon, day after day, and think you can walk G2G to the finish line, you soon learn it’s no walk in the park.
What do you do when you’ve already invested in being in Kanab for a week, traveling from Europe or Taiwan or Australia, or Idaho, spending months and money preparing your pack and your body for a grueling week of running or trekking along “the most challenging ultra marathon on the planet?”
Some who DNF’d needed to get home. Some wanted to stay in Kanab and heal and be able to go to the finish line to welcome their friends – old buddies they’d come with to face G2G together; new friends they’d made sharing a tent or conversation along the trail.
Those who stayed in Kanab enjoyed local cuisine, shopping and sites. A group of seven DNF-ers chose Kanab Tour Company to visit Peek-A-Boo Slot Canyon by ATV – a place they would have run through had they been able to stay in the race. They were delighted to be where the runners would be the following day. Some got to drive four-wheel ATVs on the deep sandy road.
Kudos to the Canyons Collection and Hampton Inn for their flexibility in accommodating the DNF-ers; when there seemed to be no more rooms in town; when sick and weary people just needed to get a room; when sometimes they were not yet able to get to their credit cards and IDs.
Once again, Kanab has amazed people with their kindness, generosity, trust and good will. More photos on B8.