Thinking about 2011.
Looking for a (singular) 100-miler.
WS lottery fail...and I would like a Hardrock qualifier, so I can at least begin the cycle of that lottery every year.
August timeframe works pretty well: I should have a better situation to train next spring and summer then I do now. Being within driving distance is another bonus.
That leaves Leadville. Some love it...some don't. I've been worried about it being overhyped (ironically, I've deeply bought into the WS100 hype), so I never thought too much about it, but I think a big part of that is the attention of the mt. bike race. If it's clearly a crowded, money-making endeavor, I could imagine being a bit bummed -- will it be worse this year, with more "Born to Run" hype, or better, with new sponsorship? I'm looking for a chill day in the mountains, with occasional calories and fresh water and llamas. Another criticism is there's a fair amount of jeep trail and roads in this trail marathon. Then again, I was perfectly pleased with the Silver Rush course...and also running near the highway, at times, in South Dakota. I kind of enjoy the variety.
So on the other hand, there's the camaraderie: there's always a large contingent of recognizable folks, sort of like a reunion atmosphere, as well as any family/friends that might make it out there. It's the home-state 100. Should be fun knowing some people, and some of the trail sections (CO trail, Hope Pass, Turquoise Lake) have historical meaning to me. And I read about epic stuff going on at night, and it starts to sound pretty interesting.
Wasatch sounds fantastic, but the travel and timing make it a bit tougher to swing. Same with Bighorn and Black Hills 100: both look awesome, but being in June conflicts with the end of my school schedule.
So that leaves Leadville -- should I pull the trigger?
What does anyone else think? Who's in, who's out, who's got a better idea?