Strap in: Pair of boot packs highlight Tuesday’s Rando skimo race course at A-Basin |

Strap in: Pair of boot packs highlight Tuesday’s Rando skimo race course at A-Basin

Skiers skin up the Wrangler trail at Arapahoe Basin Ski Area in December 2017 as part of the Rise and Shine Rando ski mountaineering race series.
Bill Linfield / Arapahoe Basin Ski Area

Two boot packs may make or break ski mountaineering competitors when they attempt to tackle the course for Arapahoe Basin Ski Area’s fifth Rise and Shine Rando ski mountaineering race of the season, scheduled for 7-9 a.m. Tuesday.

The 3-mile course consists of 2,150 feet of elevation gain and traverses from A-Basin’s base area to an uphill finish inside Snow Plume Refuge.

Similar to earlier races, competitors will skin up the beginner Wrangler run before jettisoning out into the woods for a quick switchback on the beginner Chisholm Trail. Racers will then join back up with the Wrangler trail, continuing to ascend through the trees along the toe of the ski area’s East Wall. Competitors will continue up past the East Wall into the intermediate Cabin Glades run before traversing up past the historic cabin ruins and switching back to the adjacent intermediate East Gully run.

It’s here where racers will transition to their first boot pack of the competition to traverse up Graveyard. At the top of Graveyard, skiers will descend the intermediate West Gully run beyond the bottom of the Lenawee Mountain Chairlift to the beginner Chisholm trail. Skiers will then strap their skins back on to again ascend into the beginner Sundance and intermediate Lynx Lane runs.

The final push of the race will feature skiers continuing past the south side of the Black Mountain Lodge and up the intermediate Dercum’s Gulch run to the bottom of the intermediate West Wall trail. Here skiers will again transition to a boot pack, climbing up the West Wall to the intermediate Cornice Run, where competitors will transition back to skis to conclude the uphill finish inside the Snow Plume Refuge.

Entry into Tuesday’s race costs $25. Pete Innes won the most recent race on Dec. 19, with a time of 53 minutes and 30 seconds while Rory Kelly won three consecutive Rando races on Dec. 12, Nov. 28 and Nov. 14.

It was newcomer Martina Valmassol who defeated 13 other female competitiors at the Dec. 19 race, finishing the course in 57 minutes and 13 seconds. Eva Hagen, who had won three previous Rando races, was the second female to cross the finish line behind Valmassol on Dec. 19, with a time of 58 minutes and 37 seconds.

The sixth and final race of this season’s Rando series will take place on Jan. 23, on a course that is to be announced at a later date.

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