Rob Krar’s foray into ultra running began on a whim in late 2012 at the Bootlegger 50k. Based in Flagstaff, AZ, Rob is an inspiring athlete who has overcome great challenges and gives back to his community by advocating for the protection of public lands, supporting local causes, and passing on his hard-won knowledge to others. Career highlights include a record-setting run at the Leona Divide 50/50, running the Grand Canyon double crossing route in a record-breaking 6 hours and 21 minutes, a successful initiation to the 100-mile distance with a second place finish at the Western States Endurance Run, followed by back-to-back wins in 2014 and 2015 while logging the second and third fastest times in the 41 years of the race, and many other top finishes.
Stephanie Howe feels most alive in the mountains and loves to work hard to see beautiful places. Her spirit animal is a gazelle and she metamorphose in to one when she runs. Gazelle aside, her favorite running partner in the entire world is her dog, Riley. Most recent races and/or adventures include finishing first in the 2017 Bandera 100k and also bagging Inja Tse (Island Peak) in the Himalaya this fall.
Based in Flagstaff, AZ, Brian Tinder will tell you he’s blessed to live in a place that allows four great seasons for sports. Brian competes in ultra running, ski mountaineering and mountain biking, and is the father of three awesome girls that love the outdoors as much as he does. His most recent races include the 2016 Power of Four Skimo Race, 2016 Grand Traverse, and the 2017 TransRockies Run.
Joseph Gray is one of the best trail runners to ever come out of the U.S., and the only athlete of color to represent the U.S. at the World Mountain Running Championships—which he has done for nine straight years. In 2016, he won the competition’s individual world title, helping the American men capture their first team gold medal. He is also a seven-time recipient of the U.S. Mountain Runner of the Year award. Outside of running, Joe loves to create recipes, write, and is passionate about social issues.
Maggie “Maggatron” Guterl claims she wasn’t born an ultra runner, but I will die one. Until then she hopes to experience as much adventure and meet as many interesting people in the sport as she possibly can, and see all the beautiful sights this world has to offer. Some of the accomplishments Maggie is most proud of include the 2016 Brazos Bend 100-Miler in Texas, where she won overall and finished with a time of 14 hours and 47 minutes; representing the USA gold medal women’s team at the IAU 24 Hour World Championships in 2015; and the prestigious Western States 100-Mile Endurance Run, where she placed 8th in the women’s category in 2017. Her next goal will be her biggest and most challenging to date.
Kaci Lickteig, also known as Pixie Ninja, is a believer/dreamer who loves to set goals she can chase. In 2012, at the age of 25, she ran her first ultramarathon. She won that race, as well as her next eight ultras. Five years later, with multiple ultra victories under her belt, Lickteig dominated the 2016 Western States 100-Mile Endurance Run—posting the third fastest time in the event’s 40-plus year history, placed second at the highly competitive Lake Sonoma 50-miler, and was named 2016 Ultra Runner of the Year.
Amanda Manville moved to Flagstaff, AZ, in 2010 because she wanted the mountain town lifestyle—and that’s exactly what she got. With a deep obsession for winter and love for snow sports, she enjoys snowshoeing, snowboarding, splitboarding, hiking, trail running and exploring with her dogs. Amanda can be found up in the mountains almost any day of the week—they bring her balance and peace, adrenaline and inspiration. As she says, “It’s a lifestyle.”
Mike Foote grew up in Ohio but transplanted out to western Montana. As an ultrarunner and skier, he loves traveling through the mountains as efficiently as possible no matter the season. Mike’s favorite way to relax is bake bread. His most recent races include competing in the 2017 Ski Mountaineering World Championships and placing second at the 2017 Hardrock 100. In September he race directed The Rut 50k.
Emily Torrence was born in Virginia but moved to Flagstaff in 2009 to pursue her running and ended up staying. Her original goals were aimed at elite road racing, but in part thanks to her husband, Ian, she added the focus of trail running and ultramarathons. Since, the adventures the trails have taken her on are countless. Her most recent races include competing in the 2017 Western States 100-Mile Endurance Run, and wins at the 2017 Beginner’s Luck 55K and 2017 Flagstaff Marathon.
With an incredible talent for biting off more than he can chew, ultramarathon and trail runner Luke Nelson as been drawn to the mountains his entire life. Over the years he’s found many ways to explore the world, connect with nature and challenge his body, but trail running remains the most appealing, which has inspired him to become an activist for wild places and the planet. As a professional athlete, activist, husband, father and physician’s assistant, he is constantly chasing the challenge of balance.
Matt Johnson has been a year-round fishing guide for more than 10 years and also offers fishing tips, fishing videos, fishing articles and seminars. He prides himself on educating others, which is his main emphasis for every day out on the ice. When not actually fishing, Matt is the Ice Team manager where he has been fortunate enough to work with the biggest names in ice fishing. Much like Matt, the Ice Team directs all of their focus towards helping others catch more fish and making sure other anglers are excited about the sport—and above all else, being safe.
Based in Flagstaff, AZ, Mike Popejoy loves being outside pushing his body and connecting with the natural world. He does most of his training as part of the “Wolf Pack” with his dogs Yuku and Juma, and seeks to regularly read, write, meditate and play the banjo. An all-seasons runner, Mike’s proudest accomplishment is placing second at the North American Mountain Running Championships, 2016 U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials Qualifier. He also won the three-day race at the 2017 TransRockies™ Run.
Sara Wagner has been a passionate advocate for all things Kahtoola for the past seven years. A competitive distance runner and member of the Northern Arizona Trail Runners Association, Sara is very involved in the running community of Flagstaff, AZ. Aside from competing regularly in local races, her most recent races include the 2016 USATF Marathon Trail Championships, 2017 World Masters Mountain Running Championships, and 2017 USATF Mountain Running Championships/Cranmore Mountain Race.
Ellen Miller is a USATF Certified Level 2 Endurance/Athletic Coach in Vail Valley, CO, and is the coach/manager of the U.S. Women’s Mountain Running Team. She was the first American woman to climb Mount Everest from both Nepal and Tibet 2 (one of six women in the world). Ellen has also climbed Himalayan peaks Lhotse, Cho Oyu and Manaslu, and was the second woman in history to climb Nuptse to complete the “Everest Trilogy.” She has also been voted Colorado Sportswoman of the Year, is the founder of The Climb for Literacy, was the Race Director for the Vail Mountain Winter Uphill race for 10 years, and overall takes pride in helping people at any ability level reach their potential in fitness and wellness.
Brandy Erholtz lives in Dillon, CO, with her husband and two little boys, though her love of the outdoors was born in International Falls, MN, aka the “Icebox of the Nation.” Camping, fishing and snowmobiling were considered “sports,” but not so much endurance events. Her love for running started by accident when she joined the cross-country team in middle school but was really more interested in missing the remainder of English class. Now a member of the American Trail Running Association, she leads by example as a steward for public lands. She has represented the U.S. 13 times in mountain running, became a national champion by winning Mount Washington in 2008 and 2009, won Pike’s Peak in 2008 and 2010 (in 2010 it was the World Long Distance Mountain Running World Championships), and has won three nationals with the U.S. National Snowshoe team.