2024 Update – The Golden 6 Hour is set October 12, 2024. Registration will open via Ultrasignup on February 13th. Limited to 85 runners.
I love everything fall. The colors, pumpkins, hot soups, warm sweaters, etc. It was brought to my attention that there was a sweet but neglected loop near the top of Blewett Pass that had larches and loads of autumn color. A scouting trip mid-October 2019 to the Swauk Forest Discovery Loop confirmed the above – beautiful color and larches abound but down trees and overgrown bushes everywhere. The Cle Elum Ranger Station is excited about the potential of The Golden 6 Hour serving as the steward of the Swauk Forest Discovery Loop for future years. Join us on October 12, 2024.
Registration will open on Ultrasignup. Included in your $95 entry ($110 after February 27) is a Walla Trails Golden 6 Hour mug, and a beanie for those runners who run/hike/walk all 6 hours. Space is limit to 85 runners and there will be a waitlist if it fills. The top man, woman, and non-binary runners will be awarded a cozy zip-up hoodie! REGISTER HERE.
2022 Results – 2022 was the inaugural year and we had 77 runners start and 59 beanies handed out! Brianna Boley had the overall most loops with 13 coming in just under the wire. Bri also won the Territory Run Co. hoodie in the women’s race but Stephanie Wang was hot on her heels for most of the day and finished with a strong 12 loops. Wesley Vahsholtz ran the most loops in the men’s race with 11 loops, just two minutes faster than Ryan Libby…yee-haw!
Course // Aid Station
The Swauk Forest Discovery Trail is a 2.45 mile loop near the top of Blewett Pass. It’s all single-track that winds through a variety of woods, vegetation, and has mountain views. HEADS UP – this is a stout, little mountain loop with close to 650ft of elevation gain!
Aid Station – BRING ON THE PUMPKIN PIE
I am not joking about the fall themed aid station. There will be pumpkin pie, soups, hot apple cider, my favorite Halloween candy, seasonal ciders and beers, etc.
NEW – Post-race dinner!
We are excited to offer a post-race dinner option at Flying Horseshoe Ranch, headed up by scout Phillips, owner of All Them Goods. scout brought some baked goods to share last year at Golden 6 Hour – didn’t get any? That’s because the RD ate most of it so this year we are ready to share. 🙂 scout has both a background in catering and as a race director so we are excited for them to bring their talents. We will share the menu closer to the event weekend.
Swauk Forest Discovery Loop – directions & lodging
From the WTA website: Heading west on Hwy 2, turn south onto Hwy 97 and proceed approximately 21 miles. Turn left at the Pipe Creek Sno-park parking. Follow NF-9716 uphill approximately a half-mile to Swauk Forest Discovery Trail parking area. Trail head is to the right of toilet facilities and information signs.Heading East from Ellensburg or Cle Elum on Hwy 97, follow Hwy 97 approximately 14 miles and turn right at the Pipe Creek Sno-park parking. Follow NF-9716 uphill approximately .5 miles to Swauk Forest Discovery Trail parking area. Trailhead is to the right of toilet facilities and information signs. Parking Pass/Entry Fee: Northwest Forest Pass
Lodging: There are a lot of fun options. Flying Horseshoe Ranch is 21 miles away, Leavenworth is 26 miles away, and Cle Elum is 27 miles away. Make it a weekend getaway! To make reservations at Flying Horseshoe Ranch, call Penny Blackburn at (509) 674-2366. There is a $25 camping fee per night at FHR which allows you to use the ranch facilities. FYI – this is during Leavenworth’s Oktoberfest. Please note though that these trails and parking lot is open to public so it is first come, first serve.
Friday, October 11th, 2024
- 5:30pm-7:30pm – bib numbers & mugs at Flying Horseshoe Ranch (come stay the night at the ranch and have time for a hearty breakfast in the morning – YES!)
Saturday, October 12th, 2024
- 8:30am – check-in
- 9:45am – pre-run briefing
- 10:00-10:10am – run into the larches
- 4:00-4:10pm – course closes // beanies handed out
- NEW/6:00ish – post-race dinner at Flying Horseshoe Ranch (choose add-on in registration for $15)
Q&A // Rules
- What if there’s a storm the weekend of the event? We are indeed running on a mountain pass right before winter which could mean wild weather. We will keep a close eye on the weather a few weeks before the event and if it looks like snow is in the forecast, we will make a final decision on Thursday, October 10th. There will be a fun plan B in place – fall loops on the Twilight 12 Hour course at Flying Horseshoe Ranch – which we will communicated by noon on the 10th (check your spam for emails)!
- Are spectators allowed? Yes, but if friends or family drive separately, they will be asked to park in the lower parking lot, about .5 mile walk to the start/finish/aid station area. Carpooling is encouraged!
- Are dogs welcome? TBD – working on it!
- What if the race is cancelled due to snow, ice, another crazy pandemic, poor air quality (anything above 150 AQI)? We will offer rollovers for 2025 or 50% refund pending recouping costs of supply shopping, beanies, mugs, insurance, and rentals.
- Are there any refunds in general? Yes:
- 50% refund issued through September 12th
- Are there rollovers? No unless we cancel the event.