Focus on a race Interview

Running in the Switzerland of America at the Mt. Sneffels Marathon

05 Apr 2012 06:00
Jean-Loup Fenaux

§staticmap(10897,5,450,250)Hello, on August 11th 2012, you’ll be organizing the Mt. Sneffels Marathon. Can you tell us where it is located?

It is located in Ouray, Colorado. The half marathon starts in Ouray at 7700’ and finishes in Ridgway, Colorado at 7000. The marathon is an out/back starting in Ridgway going to Ouray and turning back down to Ridgway.

How old is the race and why was it created in the first place?

The half marathon will be held for the 12th year. The full marathon will be in its second running. The race was started as a fundraiser for the Mt Sneffels Education Foundation which funds projects for the school kids in both Ouray and Ridgway.

What kind of route have you set up for the runners? How would you describe it?

The half marathon is point to point starting in Ouray and finishing in Ridgway. It is run on a dirt road paralleling a beautiful river. The marathon is an out and back following the same course but starting and finishing in Ridgway.

Credit : Mt. Sneffels Marathon/Half
How many runners do you expect on Saturday morning? What type of runners do you plan to attract?

We expect 600-800 in the half and around 100 in the full. The half marathon is serving as the USATF Colorado Men’s Half Marathon Championship. There is $2,000 in prize money.

Do you organize other races during the Weekend? If so, on what distances?

There are two races : the half and full marathon, as well as a Kids K fun run.

At that time of the year, what kind of weather can we expect?

Temperatures range from 45-75°F (7-23°C).

Have you planned festivities around the marathon?

There is an arts and craft festival near the finish where the award ceremony will be held. There is also a concert at the Wright Opry House on Saturday night.

Marathon winners 2011
Credit : Mt. Sneffels Marathon/Half
The race finished, what advice would you give a runner who has never been to Ouray before? A good restaurant, a fancy sightseeing?

Go to one of our local microbreweries, great local restaurants. Stay a couple of days and take advantage of our beautiful hiking and jeeping trails. We are a destination getaway. Our mountains lend us our name… Switzerland of America!

In a single sentence, what would you tell the readers of ahotu Marathons to make them register for the Mt. Sneffels Marathon?

Our quaint Victorian town and incredible mountains will make for a weekend you will not forget so go to and register today!

Interview with John Ferguson, Race Director.