“A race that may be the greatest challenge of your life.”
— Chelsea Hardy
Race - Jul 7, 2018
Lake · River/Creek · Views · Wildlife
Welcome to the Sinister 7 Ultra - a race that may be the greatest challenge of your life. The 100 mile (161km) course will take you through the most rugged, remote, and beautiful terrain in Alberta's stunning Rocky Mountains. With 5,687m of elevation gain across the course, this race will punish those who are not prepared.
All distances and elevations have been verified by GPS, foot, mountain bike and quad.
Distance: 161km - 100mi
Stages: 7 stages ranging from 10.7km to 36.2km (6.65 to 22.49mi)
Elevation: Gain: 5,687m (18,658') / Loss: 5,676m (18,622')
Duration: 30 hours to complete the course
Leg 1 - Frank Slide
Trail Type: Paved road, gravel road, doubletrack, singletrack
Est. Time: 1 to 3 hours
The first leg of the Sinister 7 crosses the massive debris field of the Frank Slide. Spread over several kilometers, the slide consists of rocks and boulders as large as houses. Experts say the mountain will fall again one day; maybe tomorrow, next week, or next year... After the Slide, the route passes through the town of Hillcrest and onto cross country trails to the base of Hastings Ridge.
Leg 2 - Hastings Ridge
Trail Type: Singletrack, doubletrack, dirt road
Beginning at the base of Hastings Ridge, runners begin a grueling climb to a rewarding view. Once atop the ridge, you get a view of the entire valley, including Crowsnest Mountain and the Seven Sisters; certainly worth the punishing climb to the top! There is no time for rest as runners drop down the other side and head towards Blairmore to the finish of leg two.
Leg 3 - Willoughby Ridge
Trail Type: Doubletrack, singletrack, gravel road
Est. Time: 3 to 5 hours
Also known as "Satan's Sack", Leg 3 is dry, hot, and exposed. This leg of the Sinister 7 has the most gain and the second longest distance. In return, you are rewarded with stunning views of the mountains atop the Continental Divide! This leg crosses through the haunting remains of the 2003 Lost Creek fire where one feels as though they are on another planet. After passing the burn scar, runners once again climb back into Blairmore for the start of leg 4.
Leg 4 - Saddle Mountain
Trail Type: Singletrack, doubletrack
Est. Time: 1.5 to 3.5 hours
Leg 4 throws it all at you; tough climbs, water crossings, rugged ground and some fast trail! Straight out of the gate we welcome you with a climb half way up the ski hill. While gasping for air don’t forget we also include some beautiful views with some great photo opportunities.
Leg 5 - Mount Tecumseh
Trail Type: Singletrack, doubletrack, dirt road, paved road
Leg 5 presents some good old classic cross-country running. Connecting runners from the south end of the course to the north end, this leg presents you with a great cross-country style run alongside Mt. Tecumseh. You can guarantee to be hit with big, gnarly roots, water crossings, mud holes and just enough climbs and descents to leave you begging for it to finish!
Leg 6 - Crowsnest + Seven Sisters
Est. Time: 3.5 to 7.5 hour
This leg will try the toughest of racers. We have combined the old legs 5 + 6 into one making Leg 6 the hardest section of the Sinister 7 Ultra. Running north on what could be the wettest and dirtiest trail in Canada, runners make their way to the evil climb north of Seven Sisters Mountain. While catching your breath at the highest point on the course, don't forget to check out some of the larger mountains in the area: Crowsnest to the south as well as Tornado and Gould Dome to the north. There is no time for rest as runners drop to the west and make their way around the base of Crowsnest Mountain along trails and numerous drainages. Sure footing is key on this section as you round the southern edge of the mountain and arrive back at the McGillivray staging area to begin the final leg of the race.
Leg 7 - Wedge Mountain
Trail Type: Dirt road, singletrack, doubletrack, paved road
Est. Time: 1 to 2 hours
The final leg begins with a steep, ugly climb up the base of Wedge Mountain, followed by an incredible singletrack descent into the Nez Pierce Creek valley. Following another singletrack trail along the western slopes of Saskatoon Mountain, runners emerge in north Coleman.