Race offering adventure

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— Mountain Quest Adventures owner Barry Siff wasn't offering any details last week as he spoke about an upcoming endurance race in Steamboat Springs.

"I can't disclose the course at all until race time," Siff said.

That's because finding the course is as much a part of this event as nordic skate skiing, snowshoeing, ropes skills and running.

"Most of the racecourse will be set in the backcountry, and it will also be close to Steamboat," Siff said. "I think it's going to be great, because the area offers so many possibilities."

The Salmon Adventure race will test three-person, coed teams in a variety of backcountry challenges over two days. Teams will need to demonstrate top athletic skill as well as a talent for ski orienteering (where the course is not disclosed and competitors must use a compass to find specific checkpoints). Siff said teams will be out for about six to eight hours on the first day and four to six on the second day.

"It's like a scavenger hunt in the backcountry," Siff said.

He added that the areas the company has looked into holding the events are absolutely beautiful.

All of the areas are in and around the Steamboat area, but once again, Siff would not disclose any of the locations or particulars of the race.

"Part of the adventure is not knowing the locations," Siff said. "It keeps it mysterious and exciting. It also wouldn't be fair if the teams knew where they were going."

Siff is expecting about 25 teams to take part in the two-day event. He said some of the teams will have competed in similar races as the Eco-Challenge. Other teams may be less experienced. The top three teams will split up $1,800 in prizes. The top team will pocket $900, the second team will earn $600 and the third-place team gets $300. There will also be merchandise awarded based on other criteria.

Siff and his company put on several adventure races every year. Siff will also put on the USA Triathlon National Winter Championship Feb. 3 at the Snow Mountain Ranch in Winter Park.

For more information on any of these events, call (970) 225-2100 or log onto www.mountain-quest.com.

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