Directions to aid stations accessible to crew

Here are the directions to the aid stations that friends and family can meet you at (and a couple of additional access points for 100 mile crews.)

Additional access point #1- After seeing your runner off at the starting line, you can drive up and around to meet the runners at the top of the first mesa that they will climb. (You’ll also catch a beautiful sunrise.)   From the starting line, drive a mile west (toward LaVerkin) and turn right on Mesa Rd.  Follow this old road (paved but narrow and not maintained) for 3.5 miles to the top of the mesa, hanging right when the pavement ends.  After a quarter mile of dirt road, you’ll see the course markings emerge from a smaller dirt road to the right.  Park here and either wait for your runner (mile 5 into their run) or follow the course markings and hike in a mile to see the runners top out onto the mesa via the Flying Monkey trail.

Aid #4 (Sheep Bridge Road)- Driving towards the town of Virgin (heading east towards Zion NP from LaVerkin) on Hwy 9, pull off to the right at the Sheep’s Bridge road turnoff.  (Approximately 1 mile west of the start/finish line.)
GPS coordinates: 37°12’18.33″N 113°12’36.98″W

Aid #8 (Smithsonian Butte Turnoff)- As you pass through Hurricane heading east on Highway 9, turn right at the Highway 59 sign. One block later, turn left and follow Hwy 59 as it climbs up onto the mesa and heads out of town. About 15 minutes later, you’ll pass a gas station on the left-hand side, then some fields. Watch for a “Smithsonian Butte Scenic Byway” sign, and turn left onto a dirt road (14.8 miles from the turnoff in Hurricane).  Continue one half mile to a pullout on the right.
GPS coordinates:  37° 4’59.48″N 113° 6’23.58″W

Aid #10 (Gould’s Rim)- On Highway 9 at the east end of Hurricane, turn south on US-59 and zero your odometer. One block later, turn left (east) and begin climbing up out of the Hurricane Valley.  3.3 miles later, turn right onto the dirt road that leads to the Diamond Ranch Academy.  Continue on this road for 2.15 miles to the Diamond Ranch Academy.  Drive past the main entrance to the employee parking on the south end of the facilities.
GPS coordinates:   37° 7’37.06″N 113°15’6.92″W

Aid #11 (Hurricane Rim)- About 0.8 miles up the hill on US-59 from Hurricane, there is a pullout to the left that overlooks the city.
GPS coordinates: 37°10’59.93″N 113°16’42.48″W

Aid #12 (Virgin Dam Trailhead Turnoff)- Driving towards the town of Virgin (heading east towards Zion NP) on Hwy 9, turn right onto Sheep’s Bridge road.  (Approximately 1.35 miles before the Kolob Reservoir road turnoff.) Continue on this road for approx. 2.9 miles to the “Virgin Dam Trailhead” turnoff and turn right.  After one tenth of a mile the JEM trail will intersect the road.  Aid #12 will be here.
GPS coordinates:  37°10’44.78″N 113°14’25.37″W

Additional access point #2 on the 100 mile course for those willing to run/hike 2 miles each way (or have a 4wd vehicle.)- From the start/finish line, follow the yellow ribbons and head east towards the main entrance to Zion National Park. Turn right off of Hwy 9 onto Camino del Rio Rd. and head across bridge.
After a couple hundred yards, turn left onto dirt road just before reaching the adobe home subdivision.  Look at Gooseberry Mesa and try to see a faint road/trail that zigzags up to the top.  That is what you’re aiming for.  You’ll pass through a cattle gate as you get started (MAKE SURE TO CLOSE THIS GATE OR YOU WILL JEOPARDIZE FUTURE ACCESS FOR ALL!) and stay left at a fork in 1/4 mile and dip down into a wash.  After you climb out of the wash, you’ll have a dead straightaway for a mile and a half to a crossroads with another dirt road and a green cattle trough.  The trail marking ribbons will turn from yellow to pink at this point as this marks where the 50 and 100 mile courses join paths.  This will be about 45.5 miles into the 100 mile run.  Feel free to accompany your runner on a death march up onto the mesa, climbing nearly 1,500 ft. in 1.5 miles.  Your runner needs the support up the toughest climb on the course, and the views are worth it! If you can hack it, join your runner for a little of the Gooseberry Mesa singletrack once you’re up on the mesa before you head back, it’s one of the best sections of trail on the course.  Please yield to uphill traffic as you make your way back down off of the mesa.

About these ads

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s