Ultra Marathon – Running The Grand Canyon Rim 2 Rim 2 Rim, R2R2R or R3


Ever since I announced to my wife, family, friends and the world that I wanted to run the Grand Canyon, Rim (South Kaibab Trail) to Rim (North Kaibab Trail) to Rim (Bright Angel Trail) in one day, I’ve been asked why.  Why would I want to take on such a challenging run, that isn’t even an official race. az-bikepack-2-and-grand-canyon-127 I never really had a good answer, at least not a single answer.  As this day approaches I’ve tried to explain the calling the Grand Canyon has had on my running dreams.

Grand Canyon and 20 reasons why.

1.  I’ve come to face I may not have the drive, genetics or time to be in a position to 1st place in my age group or win an event…..but I CAN DO EPIC.  I will do epic and will live an EPIC LIFE.

2016grandcanyon

2.  For the wonder of it all…the Grand Canyon is one of the world’s great marvels.  For one day the four of us will be part of it.

GCteam(Joshua, Myself and Eric = Logistics lead)

3.  Eric and Joshua are two friends who are going with me.  Since I first mentioned this adventure to Eric on a training run for the Graveyard 100, teaming up with him and then Joshua “Dewy” has been awesome. The dreaming, planning, preparation and the future success will bond us together.

4.   This Grand Canyon run will help set the stage for a future race in Leadville, Colorado, the Leadville Trail 100. If I can survive Rim2Rim2Rim I’ll toss my hat into the Leadville race.

5.  No run can compare, some might be longer, some might have more elevation, but none, by my standard combine both in such an epic adventure.

6.  For the same reason people climb and run mountains, because its there.

7.  The logistics challenge.  This is not a race, it’s a self supported out and back run.  That challenge calls for being self supported for 48 miles and 20,000 feet of climb/decent.  Other than the pit stop at Phantom Ranch and water availability at selected spots along the trail, this run is as much about being able to support yourself as it is about the miles or location.

A friend of mine made this great video of his packing plan.

8.  I’ll be honest, some of it has to do with bragging rights.  When a group of runners get together, often you hear, I ran NYC, Chicago, Boston….well I ran the Grand Canyon #BOOM  I say this is jest…but it will be awesome!

canyonprofile 9.  There’s only two hills…

10.  The idea of running something that has remained mostly unchanged for 1,000s of years.

11.  For the Fun.

12.  For the challenge, half and full marathons are are hard, 24 hour and 100 mile races are down right tough….but Rim 2 Rim 2 Rim may be life changing.  What else can equal that?

13.  Life is short and now is the time. grandcanyoncolors 14.  To see and be surrounded by natures color palette. Please join the Facebook group Grand Canyon R2R2R for a ton of information and documented experiences.

15.  I grew up in Erie, Pa most of my early adult life, but for one summer there was a thought that we might one day move to Arizona.  I remember looking at a map of the state, seeing the canyon outline and thinking, wow wouldn’t it be cool to live there.

16.  During my first trip to the canyon over 20 years ago I stood on the edge wondering what it must be like to venture into the canyon and stand at the edge of the Colorado river and stare at the people on the canyon’s rim. south kaibab 17.  To see the Colorado river.

18.  The challenge is had to match, near 48 miles with over 20,000 feet of elevation change.

19.  It’s the GRAND CANYON.

20.  I’ve often wondered what it must have been like for the first person who while out collecting water, hunting or trying to find a new western passage, stumbled across this natural wonder.  I hope to capture some of that wonder, some of that initial excitement when I take my first strides down the South Kaibab trail headed North.

On 12 May 2016, five of us went over the edge and battled the canyon all day…it is DONE…..