Oyama’s Matt Fortuna won a bronze medal at last year’s Fat Dog 120, completing the race in 29 hours. Photo: Kelowna Capital News.

Ultra marathon Fatdog 120 runs away from wildfires

One of the country’s most elite ultra marathons will take a new direction this month, as a result of the Placer Mountain and Snowy Mountain fires.

Fatdog 120, which this year will have 400 competitors from 12 different nations, ordinarily begins near Cathedral Lakes and ends at Manning Park.

The race is in its ninth season and takes place August 10 – 12.

“I’m disappointed that we can’t use the Cathedral leg and the Trapper leg,” said manager Heather Macdonald. “There are pretty wonderful parts of that trail.”

This year the race will begin and end in Manning, and is shortened to 103 miles.

The decision to re-route the event was made about two weeks ago, said Macdonald.

Race volunteers attempted to access areas of the trail near Cathedral Lakes for maintenance and were turned away by fire crews.

“There was a lot of work to be done,” said said, when the decision to move the race was made.

Because of the shorter distance Frosty Mountain has been added to route.

“That’s fairly challenging. Frosty Mountain has the elevation, so they will feel like they’ve done the hard work.”

Macdonald estimated that in addition to runners, 600 supporters and crew members attend the race.

Fatdog was named one of the top ten toughest ultra marathons in the world by Outside Online, and is on the Canadian Running Magazine’s must run list.

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