About the Run
The STORMY Trail Race is a trail running event in Squamish. BC, that includes a 50 mile solo ultramarathon and a 50 mile team relay.
STORMY is a not-for-profit endeavor. The race, in its 11th year, follows portions of the famous Test of Metal mountain bike course with variations to enhance the running experience. The course is 50 miles long with 4500+ feet of climbing. Solo runners compete 50 mile lap. Relay teams compete over the 50 mile distance. The ultra races appeal to intermediate and expert trail runners while the relay is for the beginner and beyond.
STORMY is located in an idyllic corner of the world in Squamish, BC. Squamish is a town of about 15,000 that sits at the end of a long fjord of the Pacific Ocean. It’s about midway between Vancouver, a cosmopolitan city of 2 million known as one of the best places to live in the world, and Whistler, one of the top alpine resort towns in the world and host to the 2010 Winter Olympics. It used to be that people passed through Squamish or, at best, stopped for a coffee and a tank of gas en route to Whistler. Then they noticed that the area offers world-class climbing and windsurfing, outstanding river rafting, snowshoeing, mountain biking and, oh yes, awesome trails.
The terrain around Squamish is perfect for trail running. Some call the area the “Colorado of Canada”. That wouldn’t be far off if was it not for the fact that the town is at sea level, so there are no issues with elevation for us runners. The mountains that rise up from the ocean are covered in pine and the occasional 500-year old monster Douglas fir. Some of the mountains, like the Stawamus Chief, look like a 40-story chunk of granite as big around as 10 city blocks.
The STORMY run course is a 50-mile loop that showcases the most spectacular trails between Diamond Head and The Chief. About 10% is flat on dirt roads or pavement and about the same on the most technical single track you’ll find anywhere. The rest is either angled up or down on trails or fire roads. The level of difficulty depends on how you calibrate your scale. Compared to the Hard Rock 100, it’s a piece of cake. It’s more technical than Western States. If you’re a flat-lander, you’d be vertically-challenged. Most would agree that it’s a “runnable” course with a few bad-ass hills.