Local runner takes second place in Heiko’s Hellish

Runners from various parts of Canada and the US joined Fernie locals this past Saturday in Heiko’s Hellish Half.

A young spectator cheers on his Dad.



By Adam MacDonald

 

Runners from various parts of Canada and the US joined Fernie locals this past Saturday in Heiko’s Hellish Half, a half marathon that takes participants along a 25 km trail, beginning just off Hartley Lake Road and ending in Annex Park.

The trail, known for its steep climbs and descents, led the runners from the 1,400 m starting line up to the Three Sisters Pass at 2,300 m, over the Mt. Fernie Ridge, and back into town – a course containing approximately 1,400 m of vertical gain and over 1,600 m of descent. “Coming down Mt. Fernie is the hardest part,” said Forest Latimer, a runner from Fernie. “It’s near the end, and it just goes on forever in a really steep descent. It’s just a lot of pounding on your legs.”

Latimer placed second, with a time of 2 hours and 46 minutes, coming in 26 minutes after winner, Jakub Sumbera, from Invermere. “I’ve been trying to do [the race] for the past three years,” said Sumbera, “but I always end up with injuries before, so I never got a chance. I really enjoyed the technical sections of the trail – jumping from rock to rock and avoiding trees.”

The race is completely self-supported, requiring participants to bring everything they need with them. “You take everything yourself, and you pack it all out,” said organizer, Ross Frazier. “If you litter, you are disqualified. We want to leave everything better than we found it.” Despite this, safety is taken into consideration, with volunteers sweeping the trail before and after the race, and monitoring racers as they reach checkpoints along the trail, ready with supplies if they are needed.

After getting permission from the Fernie Trails Alliance and the province, Frazier was given the go ahead to put the first race on three years ago, and after getting his graces, decided to name the race after builder of the trail, Heiko Socher. “He’s been in this town for a long time and is a local legend,” said Frazier on his decision. “He loved the idea of the race.”

“I’d like to say that the average active person in Fernie can, with a bit of extra training, do the race,” said Frazier on the difficulty of the trail. “It’s very scary looking, but if you go and do it and push your own pace, you could definitely finish it under five hours – that’s walking a lot, and only jogging flats. It’s scary, but doable.”

This year saw the first injury the race has had in its three years, with the youngest racer, 19-year-old Lindsay Roberts, rolling her ankle.

Just Posted

Delays at railroad crossing cause for concern

About 1870 Fernie residents are temporarily isolated when the train passes through town

Kootenay-Columbia candidates attend Creston Valley Chamber of Commerce 2019 election forum

About 120 people attended the Creston Valley Chamber of Commerce 2019 election forum on Oct. 16 at the Prince Charles Theatre.

Fernie’s Tiny Home Hotel celebrates grand opening

Mayor Qualizza said many other communities have been asking about Fernie’s groundbreaking project

Two years later, City of Fernie remembers

Oct. 17, 2019 marks two years since the tragic ammonia leak at Fernie Memorial Arena

Cycling Without Ages Launches on Sunday at The Arts Station

‘Did you ever want to do a biking Miss Daisy cruise around town with community leaders?’

Fashion Fridays: 5 things to remove from your closet

Kim XO, helps to keep you looking good on Fashion Fridays on the Black Press Media Network

Kawhi Leonard, former Toronto Raptor, welcomed back to Vancouver at pre-season game

Fans go wild at pre-season game between L.A. Clippers and Dallas Mavericks at Rogers Arena

Greens and NDP go head to head on West Coast; Scheer takes fight to Bernier

Trudeau turns focus to key ridings outside Toronto after two days in Quebec

Canucks beat Stanley Cup champs 4-3 in a shootout

Leivo nets winner, Vancouver dumps St. Louis for fourth straight win

‘The more you test, the more you find’: Beef recalls a sign of success, experts say

Despite appearances, experts say a recent rise in major recalls is not a sign of food supply problems

Scholars say religious vaccine objections can’t be traced to Biblical sources

Vaccinations are a requirement to attend class in Ontario and New Brunswick, while B.C. launched a demand this fall

ELECTION 2019: How would the major parties address Canada’s housing crisis?

Promises include speculation taxes, more affordable housing, and declaring housing a human right

Japanese buyer expands wood pellet contract with B.C.’s Pinnacle

Mitsui and Co. increases contract with Interior energy producer

ELECTION 2019: Have Justin Trudeau’s Liberals really cut middle-class taxes?

Conservative Andrew Scheer vows to cut bottom bracket, NDP’s Jagmeet Singh targets wealth tax

Most Read