At 100 miles long, and with more than 33,000 feet of elevation gain and descent, the Hardrock 100 has long been considered one of the world’s toughest ultras. The 2016 race in Southern Colorado’s San Juan mountains drew 152 of some of the world’s best runners, and only 115 finished. Anna Frost took the women’s title for the second year in row while Kilian Jornet and Jason Schlarb walked across the finish line together to share the victory. Photographer Daniel Sohner was there, camera in hand, to see it all unfold. Here, Sohner shares of a few of his favorite images from the race.
Photo: Early on in the race, runners climb above Island Lake toward Grant Swamp Pass.Jason Schlarb (orange) Kilian Jornet (blue) and Xavier Thevenard (black) descend a scree field into Grant Swamp Pass. The Hardrock 100, which begins and ends in Silverton, Colorado, covers 100 miles of some of the state’s most difficult and remote terrain.Tim Olson descends the scree field into Grant Swamp Pass.Jornet makes his way along Bear Creek after leaving the town of Ouray, Colorado, on his way to Engineer Pass at 12,800 feet above sea level.Joe Grant and his pacer make their way up Bear Creek with Ouray, Colorado, in the background. To navigate Hardrock’s physical and mental tolls, many runners choose to run with partners or pacers, so they’re less likely to get lost or make poor judgments.Competitors’ drop bags, filled with comforts like new clothes and food, wait at the Ouray checkpoint.Olson gets ready to head back out on the course after refueling at the Ouray checkpoint.Olson hugs one of his sons at the Ouray checkpoint before continuing his race.A competitor’s headlamp illuminates the trail to American Basin. Since the final cutoff time for the Hardrock 100 is 48 hours, competitors must be prepared to run non-stop through the night.Each runner is required to wear a GPS locator for the duration of the event. Spectators watch GPS updates from the Silverton High School gym at the finish of the race.Schlarb (blue) and Jornet (red) finish the 2016 Hardrock 100 hand-in-hand after running together for a majority of the race. Their final time was just under 23 hours.Competitors make their way toward Stony Pass as the sun comes up on the second day of the race.Anna Frost (blue) and her pacer run toward Stony Pass on the second day of the race.Frost and her pacer tackling Stony Pass at 12,592 feet. Frost went on to be the first female finisher, with a time of 29 hours and 2 minutes.Olson takes a moment after his ninth-place finish. To signify that they have completed the course, in what is often a very personal and emotional moment, runners kiss a large piece of mining debris instead of crossing a finish line.
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