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Let the Games Begin!

Hey Everyone.  We hope your travels have gone, or are going, smoothly to Big Sky and we are excited for the weekend coming up. Here are a few reminders and last minute updates as we head into our events.  We are so excited to have you here!!!!

As always, be sure to follow/like us on Facebook  or check us out on twitter at @RunTheRut to get the latest news. And use #RunTheRut as the offical race hashtag!!!!

Construction on 191:

If you are driving to Big Sky from the North on 191, there is construction on the road and please plan accordingly.  We recommend giving yourselves an extra half hour in getting to Big Sky on both Friday and Saturday morning.

Vertical Kilometer:


It's going to be Reall really cold!  Dress appropriately!

Course Updates:

We received about a half inch of snow on the upper portaions of Lone Peak last night and today. much has melted but snowy and slick spots remain on the course.  PLease use caution on the exposed sections of the ridge.  We have installed a handline on the most exposed section of the climb and we will have medical and saftey personel on site to assist runners through this section.

Getting back down:

All Vertical Kilometer participants must take the tram down from the summit after finishing the race.  On race day when you pick up your packet you will need to fill out a waiver of liability for using Big Sky resort Lifts.

Vertical Kilometer drop bags:

We will have drop bags for you at the VK packet pick up which you may use to send layers to the summit so you have something to stay warm in when you finish.  You must use the provided drop bag. Thanks!

Reminder: 50K Drop Bags (IMPORTANT UPDATE):

Due to logistical constraints we are now asking that if you plan to have a drop bag at the Tram Dock Aid Station you bring it to our packet pick up no later than 6:30 PM on Friday.  In order to get all gear, drop bags and volunteers in place for our event we must start this process of transporting the materials as early as possible. Thanks for your understanding.


In addition to the dozens of warm indoor restrooms in the Big Sky base area and many of your hotel rooms, we will have porta potties at the start finish area/ we also have restrooms at both the Madison Village base area and the tram dock aid station.

Weekend Schedule:

Friday (9/12/14):

  • 7:30-9:00 AM | Vertical Kilometer Packet Pickup in Big Sky Resort Base Area at Lone Peak Pavilion at base of Swiftcurrent Lift
  • 7:30-8:30 AM | VK Drop Bag Drop off to be taken to the Summit Finish Line
  • 9:00 AM | Wave 1 Lone Peak Vertical Kilometer start
  • 9:05 AM | Wave 2 Lone Peak Vertical Kilometer start
  • 9:10 AM | Wave 3 Lone Peak Vertical Kilometer start
  • 12:40 PM | Vertical Kilometer Course is closed
  • 1:30 PM | VK Awards Ceremony in the Big Sky Base Area
  • 10:00 AM-6:00PM | Rut 50K and 12K runner packet pick-up at Big Sky Resort at Lone Peak Pavilion at base of Swiftcurrent Lift.
  • 6:00PM |  50K Optional pre-race runners meeting at Big Sky Resort at Lone Peak Pavilion at base of Swiftcurrent Lift. We will discuss course conditions and weather and answer any lingering questions runner’s may have.

Saturday (9/13/14):

  • 5:00-5:45 am | 50K Participant packet pick-up
  • 5:00-5:45 am | Drop bag drop off @ Lone Peak Pavilion near start line.
  • 6:00 am |  Wave 1 50K Race Start @ Big Sky Resort Base Area near Swiftcurrent lift base.
  • 6:05 am |  Wave 2 50K Race Start @ Big Sky Resort Base Area near Swiftcurrent lift base.
  • 6:10 am |  Wave 3 50K Race Start @ Big Sky Resort Base Area near Swiftcurrent lift base.
  • 6:30 am-7:45 am | 12K packet pick-up @ Big Sky Resort Base Area near Swiftcurrent lift base.
  • 8:00 am | Wave 1 12 K Race Start @ Big Sky Resort Base Area near Swiftcurrent lift base.
  • 8:05 am | Wave 2 12 K Race Start @ Big Sky Resort Base Area near Swiftcurrent lift base.
  • 8:10 am | Wave 3 12 K Race Start @ Big Sky Resort Base Area near Swiftcurrent lift base.
  • 11:00 am | 12K Awards Ceremony in Big Sky Base Area
  • 12-6:30 pm |  Post Race hot meal for 12K and 50K Runners. There will be food trucks for spectators to buy meals too.
  • 12-6:30 pm | We are excited to have our presenting sponsor Sapphire PT of Missoula, MT offering FREE post race massages  near the race finish line for rut runners on race day!
  • 6:00-6:30 pm | 50K Awards Ceremony @ Big Sky Resort Base Area near Swiftcurrent lift base.
  • 6:30 pm | 50K Course officially closed
  • 8:00 pm-2:00 am | Post Rut party at Whiskey Jacks in Big Sky Resort mountain villages mountain mall! Live DJ, drink specials, and if we really get our act together a mechanical bull to beat you up a little more if the race course didn’t do enough!

Ultra Sports Live TV:

We have UltraSportsLive.TV on site this year with a team of eight people capturing the action live. Check out their site for live feeds on race day!


We had as little dusting of snow today and last night, but the course has been melting out and we are feeling food about this weekend.  The forecast is calling for cold temps in the morning but warming into two glorious days over Friday and Saturday. 

Course briefing:

Our 50K course briefing to answer any last minute questions will be at the start finish area near the Lone Peak Pavilion at 6 PM.

Post Race Party:

We did it! We got a MECHANICAL BULL to compliment our LIVE DJ to keep things interesting at our post race party at the Whisky Jack in the Mountain Mall. Recover in style from 8pm-2am. DJ and Bull both start after 9!!!!!!

Food updates:

50K and 12K Runners on Satuirday must present their bib at the post race BBQ to get the amazing spread of great food catered by Big Sky Resort. Spectoators may get food at the food trucks which will also be on site on Saturday.

VK Prize Money:

We are now offering prize money for the Vertical K!  Some of the best mtn runners in the world will be here competing and they deserve a little something for their efforts right???  1st gets $250 USD, 2nd gets $150 USD and 3rd gets $50 USD

Medical hold on the course:

With the technicality of our course it is important for us that you know should a medical scenario occur on an alpine section of our course, specifically Headwaters Ridge and Bonecrusher ridge. If someone is hurt on one of these sections, there is a chance our medical personnel and Big Sky Ski Patrol may need to stop the runners from passing the injured party in order to not put anyone else in danger.  Of course no one wants this to happen, but we appreciate your understanding in these exposed alpine environments should you be stopped for sometime while our medical staff does their job.

Post Race Massage by Sapphire Physical Therapy:

Our Good friends at Sapphire Physical Therapy will be posted up at the finish line ready to give post race massages to all Rut Runners. be sure to wander over to their tent and say Hi.  You are going to need some TLC after finishing this race!


There are lots of critters on the course.  This place is wild which is why we are all here, but you must respect the wildlife in the area.  If you encounter any wildlife please maintain your distance and allow the animal to move on before continuing on with your race.  This is for the safety of all parties involved.


Last year we offered a spectator option for folks to get to the top of swiftcurrent lift and also the tram.  This year if you would like to make it to the summit via the tram you must buy a complete Lone Peak Expedition Ticket.  You can find more info HERE.

If you would like a lift up the Swiftcurrent Lift from the base area you can buy a  ticket in the Big SKy Base Area Plaza at the Base Camp Office.  The Swiftcurrent lift will open on Saturday at 8 AM.


The staff of The Runner's Edge will be on site selling all sorts of Rut merch. Truckers hats,T-shirts, Hoodies, Whisky Flasks, Baby Onesies. Get 'em while they are HOT!

Thank you to our sponsors:

Black Coffee Roasting Co. | Big Sky Brewing | Big Dipper Ice Cream | Bozeman Running Company | Hammer Nutrition | Garlington, Lohn & Robinson | Zilla State | Fitsok | Sprout Films