Reversal at Rabbit Ears

10K race switches directions Sunday

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— For 22 years, Labor Day weekend runners racing at Rabbit Ears Monument and along the Continental Divide have tackled the same challenging course of rolling service roads and mountain singletrack.

Sunday's race, the 10K at 10,000 Feet, will be no different - except racers will run the other direction for the first time.

"The reason we'll do it is that we had about 180 runners last year, and to have them funnel down immediately onto singletrack isn't great with the safety in passing and being able to see the trail," course marker Bob Dapper said.

The course will start with a three-mile climb up a dirt-and-gravel road to the race's highest point - 10,320 feet - before a rolling descent down to the Continental Divide Trail at mile No. 5.

From there, the 6.8-mile course, which is slightly longer than a traditional 10K, loops back on rustic singletrack trails to the start and finish lines at the Rabbit Ears Monument, near the Dumont Lake Campground. In all, the course features 834 feet of elevation gain.

Dapper invited both interested runners and walkers to participate in the race, which starts at 10 a.m.

"It's gorgeous this time of year, and a lot of people treat this one as a nice, serious workout versus a serious race," Dapper said. "We've always had a real solid interest with the locals. It's a great event to offer on Labor Day that's healthy, rather than just eating or drinking."

To reach the start, take the "Old Highway," at the Dumont Lake turnoff just west of the Rabbit Ears Pass East Summit, north from U.S. Highway 40 to the monument.

Race day registration costs $25 and is from 9 to 9:30 a.m.

This is the 13th of 14 events in the 2007 Steamboat Springs Running Series.

Visit www.runningseries.com for the full schedule, more race details and an updated list of the series point standings.

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