The 9 Toughest Ultramarathons
Used to be that running a 50- or 100-mile race earned you bragging rights for life. No more. Today, the word “ultra” has been slapped on laundry detergent, lite beer, and any marathon that takes a step beyond 26.2 miles. It seems like every endurance runner is prepping for one. Fortunately for runners with a hankering for the extreme, there’s a class of ultramarathon that’s a step above the rest. They’re extra long, incredibly tough, and take the type of commitment and logistics once needed for climbing a Himalayan peak, all brought to bear in some of the world’s most dazzling landscapes. Think you have what it takes? Finish one of these nine races, and everything afterward will seem like a neighborhood fun run. —Jason Daley Honorable Mention: It may not appear on this list, but the Barkley Marathons is up there with the world's craziest races. Learn more about it in our comprehensive oral history.