Sierra Summerfest

Sierra Summerfest

Day 3: A-meet Middle Event
(Part 2 of the 2013 Western States Championships)

Little Truckee Summit

Date: Jul. 27 - 28, 2013
Location: Sierraville, CA
Event Director: - 510.407.1876
Course Setters: Rex Winterbottom, Deron van Hoff
Type: A; Middle on Saturday, Long on Sunday (parts 2 & 3 of the 2013 Western States Championships)

Course Setter's Notes

By Rex Winterbottom

Enjoy some ping-pong through the various shades of forest in the newly expanded portion of our Little Truckee Summit map! Logging activity has really made it a patchwork of forest, and there's some deadfall and slash to negotiate here and there. The advanced courses have some relatively steeper, more-densely forested sections, and some more gently undulating, more-openly forested sections. Good variety.

Thanks to Deron Van Hoff for his course critiques and on-location vetting, and to course consultant Don Davis.

Course Statistics

    Course     Length    Climb   Controls   Stops
    White      1.7 km     15 m      12        0
    Yellow     1.9 km     40 m      12        0
    Orange     3.5 km    110 m      11        1
    Brown      2.3 km     65 m      12        1
    Green      3.0 km     90 m      14        2
    Red        4.4 km    130 m      20        4
    Blue       5.1 km    150 m      24        4

Remote Start

Note that there is a remote Start on Saturday for the Middle courses. Be sure to allow enough time for waiting for the shuttle bus, the bus ride, and the walk to the Start. We estimate that could take at least 45 minutes.

All the courses have the same Start, and the same walk from the shuttle bus drop-off. Depending on where the drop-off will be, there will be a 700-meter or 900-meter, streamered walk to the Start. Just follow the streamers.

Once you get to the Start, you can leave items (but please minimize what you leave). We will get them down to the Finish.

You can warm up along the dirt road by the Start in the southwest direction, but you may not wander off the road.

The Rides

Some are mapped. Some are unmapped. Some are easy-to-follow. Some aren't. Remember when Rumsfeld talked about the "known knowns"​—​those would be the mapped, easy-to-follow rides. And the "known unknowns": mapped, difficult-to-follow rides. Then the things we "don't know we know": the unmapped, but easy-to-follow rides. And the things that really get you, he said, are the "unknown unknowns", but you probably don't care about the unmapped, difficult-to-follow rides.

Oh, what is a ride? Usually a remnant of a logging road, that leaves a linear clearing in the forest, sometimes with a trace of a path(s) on the forest floor. Some have speed bumps that you can continue past. If you can find a ride and it works, then ride it.

Shades of Forest

Think of the shades of green, white, and open/rough open with scattered trees as different tree densities. In most cases, the boundaries between them are not very distinct. The darkest green forest is quite passable. In the open, it can be hard to spot the lone trees​—​sometimes they have companions, and sometimes two really close ones can be mapped as one.

The Rocks

Boulders of different sizes, boulder clusters, stony ground ... some of the more reliable features to navigate by. Mostly pretty good. Although, you can see small boulders less than a meter in height, and stony ground as well, that aren't mapped.

Where's the Water?

Streams are apparent upon close inspection and quite dry. Ditches and streams are not easy to pick out, since the valleys are broad and no water is running.

Follow Me

Of note for White and Yellow participants:

Taste it Again for the First Time

The Red and Blue courses have a "Butterfly Wing," so participants on them will visit the same checkpoint twice.


I ran into a tree with a sharp branch, not very long, but short and sharp.

There are lots of rocks in some places, and lots of slash in others. Sometimes footing can be tricky.

I saw one instance of barbed wire on the ground, and that has a streamer on it.

Although the Middle distances aren't extreme, it could be hot, and combined with the altitude, you will be more vulnerable to dehydration. So the intermediate and advanced courses have water stops.