----The AT section of JFK is a little crowded but not too bad.
----My friend Ed reeeeeaaally loves Telluride Mountain Run, maybe even as much as he loves pulling a sled though possibly not as much as he loves the beer mile.
I decided to go by process of elimination:
Maria said she would go out to Montana with me and do Run the Rut if I wait til next year, so that made it an easy choice to take that off the list for this year.
Le Grizz should, in theory, be a perfect option but I couldn't seem to get excited about it. Also, I prefer my chances of surviving a race un-eaten by grizzly bears to be a bit closer to 100%.
I kind of want to run a road 100k next spring, which would be pretty similar to Door County in terms of distance/surface, so I eliminated Door County.
As Karen pointed out, TNF San Francisco can have major weather issues, and since that one is similar, in terms of what I want, to JFK, I'd put JFK slightly ahead of TNF on that basis.
That left a seriously tough choice between Telluride, the Ultra Trail Serra de Montsant, and JFK. While I was pretty tempted by Karen's suggestion of UTSM + winter road marathon, that would mean I'd have to commit to not doing a winter sled race...which would be tough. I don't want to do Arrowhead next year but I'm still tempted by Susitna or maybe even White Mountains, if I could make it through the lottery.
So, as much as I hate to leave the UTSM undone for yet another year, I think I'm going with JFK, assuming I can enter quickly enough to get in. As an added bonus, two other GUTS runners might be interested in doing it too (one of them being a quietly super-fast previous JFK winner...). Divesh took the news well that I had already volunteered him to crew for all three of us!
Since JFK isn't til November, I can maybe still fit in Telluride in August, although I would probably do it as more of a hard training run than a race so that the effect of racing at altitude doesn't take me out for too much of August training time. It also leaves me time to try either a road marathon or the great local trail race Mystery Mountain Marathon in October.
Now I can get back to trying to get to grips with the Duncan Ridge Trail in time for Cruel Jewel...