intro from laz and durb
every race begins with a vision.
as race directors, we do not have the idea of simply measuring out some distance and having runners come and cover it on foot.
we have a picture in our mind of the experience the runners will have.
and there are often other, subsidiary goals we hope to achieve.
we felt like this year we came very close to getting it just right.
we wanted people to get a taste of the barkley...
a step outside the comfort zone,
and some moments of doubt.
we wanted a finish that was attainable for anyone,
but easy for no one.
looking into the faces at the 22 mile cutoff,
it felt like we had achieved that.
we admire the heart of everyone who made it to that decision point,
and chose to go on.
collecting a barkley marathon is no mean achievement.
but, willingly going on to chimney top to chase the croix de barque
when you could opt to end the suffering and still get a finish
is something special.
about 1/3 of the people who had the guts to toe the line
collected the big prize.
those who came up short....
well, now you know what you have to do.
we also succeeded in raising significant funds for wartburg's young athletes.
and, we like to think that the athletes who worked the aid stations
found something inspiring in the "old people"
who faced hard challenges
and hard choices...
and made the choice to endure whatever it took to achieve their goal.
because that is what sports, and life, is all about.
we never achieve great things by setting small goals.
and success is never guaranteed;
it must be earned.
congratulations to everyone who had the courage to answer the starting cigarette.
respect to anyone who faced down the big rat, and got a finish....
and our hats are off to the special few who *EARNED* the cross.
to those who failed (even the ones who lost their nerve on the way to the starting line)...
the only thing more impressive than finishing a race like BFC
is returning from failure,
and doing what it takes to achieve success.
if it was easy, what would be the point?
thank you for sharing your great adventure with us.
the mixture of joy and pain in your faces,
as you flew past me on the homestretch and down the final stretch to the finish line
will inspire us forever.
laz and durb
What happens if you're on the Wait List?
Close to 300 people entered the wait list after we were full at 450 entrants.
As promised, we gave refunds to those who requested one within the time allotted, and subsequently allowed another big group in off the wait list. We still have close to 200 waiting.
Those on the current list will be given an opportunity to register for the 2017 BFC before the population at large.
About the Barkley Fall Classic
The Barkley Fall Classic is designed to give the runner a taste of what the Barkley Marathons is all about.
It contains all the elements; beautiful trails thru the rugged Brushy Mountains, surprising new elements to the course every year, with the course map not revealed until the night before the race, numerous hard climbs and descents (including some of the signature hills that have made the Barkley a thing of legend), and a very personal challenge to face down the demons that wait for us at our very limits of endurance.
The BFC is a 50 kilometer race, with a ridiculous amount of climb and descent (with the attendant reward of numerous scenic vistas.) The course is designed to challenge the runner mentally, as well as physically. GPS is NOT ALLOWED, and those choosing to use it run the risk of lifetime ban. Course markings only exist at major turns, leaving the runner to rely on their confidence that they have not made a wrong turn, or missed a right one. Long sections of very runnable trail follow on the heels of strength-sapping sections of hills... requiring the successful BFC runner to run, when every fiber of their being cries out for taking things slow to recover. The most devastating climbs hit at the runner's weakest moments. Everything is arranged to play on the doubts and weaknesses that exist in all of us. The BFC'er must not only beat the course to finish, but they must conquer their own darkest fears....
As a final challenge, there is a 22.1 mile cutoff of nine and a half hours. Those who reach that point within the time limit are presented with a terrible choice. They can, with a word, choose to end the suffering and run an easy downhill grade for another 7 tenths of a mile, to record a marathon finish.... or, they can strike out into another 9 miles of brutal climbs and descents in an attempt to complete the 50k. Unlike other races with "drop-down" choices, those who choose to continue can no longer log a marathon. At the BFC it is all or nothing.
At the BFC, success is not guaranteed. It might even be considered unlikely. Fully a third of the aspiring entrants will come up with some reason to not be at the line when the starting cigarette is lit. (and who can blame them? at the BFC your very best is not good enough. It takes something a little more than that). More than half of those who have the guts to toe the line will not finish the 50k. The Barkley Fall Classic is not for everyone. If you are only looking to impress your friends, there are a lot of better 50k's to choose from. You should pick one where you are sure to finish, if you don't screw up. If you are looking for a chance to find that something extra inside yourself... that something that you do not know for certain is there... the BFC is for you.
Male and Female winners get guaranteed slots in the Big Barkley in the spring. (A lot of others may discover that they really do not even want to appy.)
Hotels in Wartburg: Scenic River Inn 915 Main St. 423-346-5733. Very few rooms.
Frozen Head State Park Camping:
Big Cove – located at the Yellow Gate. Reserve on-line or through the FHSP office. Fills quickly; but oftentimes campers will share if they have space.
Flat Fork Group Camping: just up the road from the turn off to Big Cove; there are 8 sites that hold up to 15 people each. This area is first-come, first-served.
Wartburg area: The American Legion in Wartburg 202 S. Kingston St, is offering sites for camping either behind their building (restrooms and showers available), or other places in Wartburg. To reserve, call Bill Podewils at 423-628-5635. Mr. Podewils only asks that you make a donation to the American Legion.
Flat Forks Road: Very near Frozen Head State Park. Mr. Brian Young has property located on a side road off from Flat Forks Road. For info and reservations, his # is 423-223-7844. He has room for approx. 15 tent sites. His charge is a donation to the Wartburg Fire Dept. for each camp site.
Liberty: close to Wartburg. Bathrooms on site. 423-346-6848. Talk to Janice.
Bed & Breakfasts or Cabins:
Raiford Cabin – call Bill Podewils for info. 423-628-5635
Two Rivers B&B: 885 Genesis Rd, Lancing TN. 423-965-4464 – 15 minutes from Wartburg. www.betweentworiversbedandbreakfast.com
Cabins in Sunbright: 618 Coon Hollow Rd, Sunbright, TN. 423-628-6293
The Alexander-Perrigo House: two rooms available. www.spiritofredhill.com
Grey Gables Bed/Breakfast: http://www.rugbytn.com/
Grey Gables has 10 bedrooms available – 8 with private baths rates range from $95 to $145
Rugby area: 20 minutes north of Wartburg: www.historicrugby.org
1880 Newbury House
Schedule of Events: packet pick up; drop bags; parking; start info
FRIDAY SEPTEMBER 16:
Packet Pick up: 3pm – 8pm Eastern Time, at American Legion Hall, 202 S. Kingston Street, Wartburg, 37887. Enter through the basement doors.
Your bib#, map of the course, and more goodies will be in your packet. You will also receive a shirt.
Dinner and Movie 4 pm: with special Q&A with Laz, RawDog, Danger Dave, and Brushy Mountain Prison Guard "Ball Bat".
Extra dinner for those not attending the 4pm will be at 6:30pm
SATURDAY SEPTEMBER 17:
Breakfast: The American Legion will serve breakfast between 04:30 - 06:30 for runners and their guests.
NOTE: if you are a runner, you should wrap up breakfast no later than 06:00 and make the 15 minute drive to the park. Your guests not riding with you can enjoy breakfast until 06:30.
Race Day Parking will be at Rocky Fork Field beginning at 05:00. This is the area where the volleyball nets are about a half mile from the park entrance.
NO PARKING before 05:00 Saturday morning.
Volunteers will be on site to assist you. Please conduct yourself in an orderly manner. Many more vehicles this year, so be patient; or better yet, be early.
YOU MUST BE ON TIME AND PARKED NO LATER THAN 06:45.
DROP BAGS: If you feel like you need a drop bag; mark it with your name and bib# and place it in the designated area near the entrance to the parking field/start area. We will take bags to the aid station at mm 22/30 (where Laz is).
START: The race starts promptly at 07:00 Eastern time.
IMPORTANT NOTICE: Missing the start of the race disqualifies you. No amount of complaining, or crying will allow you to continue.
Porta potties: There will be 10 at the start area. Rest rooms also available at Big Cove campground mm 2, and at mm 22/30 (100 yards off course).
Noon until dark: At the finish area, the Cattlemen's Association will be serving a fantastic steak sandwich, chips, and drink for about seven bucks. PLEASE support them, tip them, and thank them. They work all day to raise money for their Agriculture Scholarship Fund for Morgan County schools.
END OF EVENT: the official finish dead line is 20:20 (8:20pm) or 13hours 20minutes after the start (same time allowed as one loop of the Barkley).
BFC gives back to Morgan County and FHSP
Something good is coming... out of something bad
Local time: 6:23 PM
Thanks to you, we have made some very significant donations to the Morgan County community: $17,000 to Wartburg High School, to use for their Athletic budget.
All proceeds from the dinner and breakfast go to the American Legion of Morgan County.
The Cattleman's Association uses the proceeds from the Steak Sandwiches served at the finish area for their Agriculture Scholarship Fund. A big portion of your entry fees go to Frozen Head State Park. Morgan County thanks you, and so do we.