Update regarding Buckin' Hell 2021.
Hello Buckin’ Hell runners, it is with great disappointment that we must unfortunately announce the postponement of the BH races into 2022. There is simply no path forward at this time for this race to happen at any point throughout the remainder of 2021.
We look forward to hosting Buckin’ Hell in all its glory on July 23rd, 2022. Everyone registered for the 2020 event will be rolled forward into the 2022 event. Until then, nothing further is needed on your end. Take care of yourself, and each other, and thanks for your understanding.
Update from CTMR regarding our 2021 event schedule.
Coast Mountain Trail Running is dedicated to producing our races, in any capacity, just as soon as we’re permitted to do so. We’ve been in regular contact with the nearly 40 different permitting agencies across all our events, as well as local health authorities, to understand the timeline for getting back to on-the-ground events again. But as of now, there’s really nothing else to report.
While most of our permitting contacts are as eager to get back to supporting events as we are to host them, at this moment, no permitting agency in BC’s Lower Mainland is able to process or grant permits for any event, of any size. A few agencies are actually accepting applications, and we’ve submitted those that we can, but they’re just waiting on desks until we have clarification from the province. We have zero control from here as to the timeline that relevant agencies may or may not approve our event permits for this coming year.
We have high hopes that our races planned for the back half of this year will all be approved, in at least some capacity, but this is still very much an uncertainty at this point. We cannot give even an estimated date for an update, as we just don’t know when that’ll be. What we do promise is that as soon as we know, you’ll know, but right now we’re in a bit of a holding pattern unfortunately.
You may have noticed that some events are accepting registrations for their 2021 events. It’s entirely possible that other jurisdictions are providing tentative permits, but with provincial guidance remaining at ‘no events of any size’, there are definitely no confirmed permits being issued across the board.
It is our decision at this time that we are not comfortable accepting new entries to any of our events, until we have at least some level of certainty as to the likelihood of each race, and what actual restrictions may or may not be imposed on those races.
Participants registered for our 2020 Squamish 50, Diez Vista and WAM events have chosen to roll their event credits into either 2021 or 2022. For any 2021 race that does not happen, those race credits will be rolled forth entirely, into 2022. We’ll be announcing options for your 2020 credits for our other events as soon as we have confirmation of when we can actually hold those events.
We hope to host as many of our events this year as we can, but we understand there are bigger issues at play here and we are waiting patiently on the sidelines until further notice. The only thing we know for certain right now, is that most of our permit agencies are eager to approve our events once they’re sanctioned to do so.
Update regarding Coast Mountain Trail Running 2021 season.
Hello runners, we hope you are all well and staying fit, healthy and safe through these challenging times.
We would like to fully update you on our 2021 event season timeline and plans. As BC heads firmly into its second wave of this pandemic, all permit applications have ground to a halt.
While we have a realistic understanding of the challenges ahead, we are optimistic that the vaccines being produced via multiple pharmaceutical companies have us on the right track to putting this thing in the rearview mirror for good in the new year.
There is little to no chance that any event will be fully sanctioned before late spring / early summer at the absolute earliest. With this in mind, our 2021 race dates are as follows:
May 29: Survival of the Fittest
July 24: Buckin’ Hell
August 14 - 15: Squamish50
September xx: Whistler Alpine Meadows races (exact September date yet to be confirmed)
October 10: Run Ridge Run
October 24: Diez Vista
Postponed until 2022: Cap Crusher and Sky Pilot
New for 2021: We’re working on a race concept, in a brand-new location, for a late spring race date, stay tuned for updates. This will mostly likely be a “boutique” style event with strict COVID limitations and a low cap on race numbers. We’ll treat this as a demo-event for 2021, in the hopes of growing it into one of our full roster events in 2022.
With the continued uncertainties and the inability to fully confirm any permits at this exact time, we’ve made the decision to hold off on race registration openings until we have clear guidance from provincial health authorities.
Runners who were registered for Diez Vista, SQ50 and WAM races in 2020 will have already received email notices from us in regards to re-registering for the 2021 editions of these races.
Runners who were registered for Cap Crusher, Survival of the Fittest, Buckin’ Hell and Sky Pilot, will all receive a pre-registration invite in early 2021, to then apply the percentage of their 2020 race entries they were promised, towards a 2021 or 2022 event.
Will any new slots open up for SQ50, DV and WAM in 2021?
Most runners have chosen to roll over into 2021, with a small percentage choosing 2022. We will not be taking any additional registrations for these events at this time. We will revisit this regularly in light of provincial health guidelines, prior to opening up registration for events that are not fully sold out, and we will make an announcement regarding potential new entries in early 2021.
Feeling frustrated, bored, unmotivated, or all of the above? We hear you; it’s been a trying time for the events business. We’re working daily to resolve as many issues as we can and to get clarification on the 2021 season in general. We are hopeful that in another six weeks or so, we’ll have a much clearer path towards our eventual return to hosting events in 2021.
In the meantime, we are launching our Winter Scavenger Hunt as of December 1st. It’s gonna be a fun endeavour and hopefully it can help keep some of those winter blues at bay. Full info via: www.cmtrscavengerhunt.com
Questions? Honestly, we don’t have all the answers right now. What we know for sure is that early season races are not likely to be permitted. We are hopeful that late spring and summer events can happen, even if there are full COVID protocols in place. We are prepared for any and all outcomes and restrictions in this regard. Runner safety is paramount. We ask for your patience and understanding until we can confirm further details first thing in the new year.
Covid-19 Update: WHISTLER ALPINE MEADOWS (WAM) POSTPONED TO 2021.
It is once again with a heavy heart, after having already cancelled 6 of our 8 Coast Mountain Trail Running races this year, that we are forced to make the following frustrating decision of postponing the Whistler Alpine Meadows races until 2021.
This means that the 2020 WAM races will not occur, and everyone’s entries will roll forth into 2021. Nothing further needs to be done from your end at this time, we will contact you in the fall with next steps. You will receive a 100% credit towards your choice of WAM 2021, 2022 or 2023. No refunds can be offered, which was clearly communicated via numerous emails to all participants over the last few months. If you purchased branded merchandise with your registration, we will contact you separately in the coming days.
This certainly comes as no surprise to runners here in BC's lower mainland, as we’ve seen all the big local events like BC Bike Race, the Gran Fondo and the MOMAR all forced to cancel their September events in recent days. While we explored every option to meet the current BC health guidelines, including dramatically scaling down the event, there are just too many external variables at play. There are complex layers of land access required for this event, and many of our key land manager partners are facing their own uncertain situations that prevent them from being able to provide any guaranteed land access. We’ve built great relationships around Whistler that have taken years to establish, and it is our duty to continue to support and foster those relationships by respecting all of the variables and uncertainties at play at this current time.
Please rest assured that we have absolutely exhausted all options available to us up until this point, and unfortunately we are left with no other course of action to pursue.
We promise that we’ll be doing all we can to still provide value to our runners, and we'll attempt to replace this massive gap in the calendar with whatever is available to us in the coming months, which will likely be some form of virtual event in the fall running season. Stay tuned via our email list and social media feeds.
Big hugs, from afar, to each and every one of you. We miss this community so much this year. Let's all hope we can get back to business as usual again in the not too distant future.
Covid-19 Update: WHISTLER ALPINE MEADOWS (WAM) REGISTRATION CURRENTLY PAUSED.
As a race organization, we realize that it’s currently a 50/50 chance that we’ll be able to host the WAM races in September. All other races and events in Whistler prior to WAM on Sept 25th have already been cancelled or postponed.
As we’ve stated in previous communications, if the race does not happen this year, we will not be offering refunds, but we will be providing deferrals for 100% of race entry values into either 2021 or 2022.
With this in mind, we feel it only fair to pause registration until we are able to make our final call, at the end of June. We have scheduled a July 1st announcement at the very latest. If on July 1st, the race is a go, registrations will of course open up once again. If on July 1st we are forced to postpone until Sept 2021, all entrants will be notified, and we’ll follow up in the fall to confirm how to defer into your choice of either 2021 or 2022.
Thank you for your understanding and patience as we work our way through these uncertain times.
Wednesday April 15th
In an attempt to help support trail races affected by recent COVID-19 cancellations, Coast Mountain Trail Running has launched a fundraiser for the month of April selling limited edition head wraps with the slogan, “I support local Race Directors”. Funds raised will be distributed to the race organization of your choice.
Read more about the campaign and order your head wrap on our Support Local page.
Saturday March 21st
Coast Mountain Trail Running Race Directors Gary Robbins and Geoff Langford have made the nearly impossible to come to terms with decision, to cancel all but one remaining event throughout the remainder of the 2020 season.
Here is their message to runners:
We are making some incredibly difficult decisions and sacrifices with a clear focus on how we as a small business can survive the next 12 months, while preserving as much of the value of your event entry. Events that are officially cancelled now include all but the Whistler Alpine Meadows races, which are still as of now, scheduled to be held at the end of September, though this will be revisited at the end of April.
Unprecedented times call for unprecedented measures, and we feel it is our duty, as community leaders, to ensure we're doing all we can to assist with the curbing of the spread of COVID-19.
We as a race organization have spent this past week discussing every possible scenario we can account for. We are a small family owned operation, with myself and Geoff Langford at the helm as co-owners / operators. We have a small team of people that work with us on each race, and one part-time employee. Everyone on our team has been part of the following decisions, with the health and safety of our runners in mind. All of us are making every concession we can, to support our runners to our maximum ability.
Over the last week of the constantly unfolding, unprecedented, worldwide outbreak of this virus, we came to one clear conclusion. As an events company, many large budget items needed to produce the remaining races on the calendar will come due in the coming weeks. We’ve already invested on various levels in all of our events. If we continue to commit funds, only to then have to cancel events this summer, we will go under as a company. In a Hail Mary attempt to limit our losses to a potentially manageable amount, we were forced to accept the inevitable. Our 2020 season, save for our Whistler races, is officially cancelled. We presented runners with our solution to these cancellations in emails distributed on March 21st. Each event has a slightly different approach to it, based upon how far along we were in the production of that unique race.
At this point we feel it necessary to provide further context as to how we arrived at this decision. We have spent tireless hours sourcing every reliable update possible on how this virus is spreading, and what this will mean for our worldwide trail running community. We feel that the absolute best case scenario that may unfold locally in the Vancouver region this summer, is that *maybe* events will be permitted to occur, though if this is to happen we’re guessing there will be strict threshold limits in place. Since our average attendance per race is 500 people, and Squamish50 tops the list at close to 2000 people (runners + volunteers + sponsors + friends and family members), we think it would be irresponsible of us to push forward into the summer as though nothing were happening right now.
We feel that it would be irresponsible of us to ask runners to continue to train for our events under the current restrictions many of you are facing. We feel it would be irresponsible of us to ask runners to travel from around the world this summer, potentially leading to further transmission of this pandemic that we are all working tirelessly to prevent. We feel a social obligation to contribute to keeping people away from large gatherings. We feel it our duty to encourage people to stay as local as possible this summer.
The question most of you have been wanting answered since you began reading. How will we as a race organization reimburse you, the runners? Again, each structure is unique to that race. If you’ve registered for multiple races under our Coast Mountain Trail Running banner, you will have received an email per race, with unique options for that event. Please understand, we’ve spent many, many hours crunching numbers and finding the formula that we feel is most fair to all involved. These options are based on the timeline each race has already committed to from a production standpoint, while also recognizing that as an events company, we’ll be stretching ourselves thin for at least two years to stay operational through all of this.
Are There Ways People Can Help CMTR Stay Afloat?
- Well we’re glad you asked, and thank you for reading this far! As we work through the merchandise details, what’s been produced and en route vs what can still be cancelled for the year, we’ll be looking to have a merchandise sale asap. Anything you can contribute to purchasing here would be massively helpful.
- Gift cards. We’ll be sharing a link on how to purchase gift cards for future events, in 2021 and beyond. These hold no expiry date and assist by giving us some revenue certainty over the coming months.
- Be a positive influence right now. Times are tough and stress levels are through the roof. Be kind, be thoughtful, look out for your friends, your family members, your neighbours. Make connections with people. Call friends. Check in on loved ones. Shoot over a short message to people to let them know you’re thinking of them. A small gesture can go a long way in times like these.
How CMTR Will Continue to Give Back This Year
There is of course the potential that we may be misinterpreting the tea leaves right now. Maybe events in and around Vancouver, and across the globe will go off without a hitch this summer. That is of course our absolute hope! In the event that gatherings of people are in fact allowed over the coming months, here’s how the team at CMTR intend to give back.
- If races are happening, we’ll be there. We’ll show up to volunteer at other events. We’ll assist in promoting other races via our social media channels. We’ll do everything we can to still be a part of the local trail running community throughout all of 2020.
- We’ll be arranging trail work dates from Vancouver to Whistler. We already had dates in place, but those are of course on hold right now. We will continue to arrange, promote, and partake in trail building and maintenance efforts as we are permitted to do so.
- Low key group runs and gatherings. If come Squamish weekend, as an example, that being August 15th, gatherings of people are allowed, we’ll be looking to get together with our brethren in some capacity. If 200 people are allowed to get together, as an example, we’ll arrange something in Squamish with 200 of you.
What to Expect in 2021
At this point we’re planning a full roster of events in 2021…and maybe even a new event if we’re lucky.
How Can We Help You, Our Runners?
We are quite serious here. Are you struggling? If you’re in a tough spot, we want to find a way to help you out. Message us. We’ll do whatever we can to be there for you, even if that is as simple as a phone call to connect and to help each other realize that we’re going to get through this, together.
We’re going to get through this, and we’re going to be stronger on the other side of this. We’re going to have a greater appreciation for just how special our community is. We love that we’ve been able to get to know so many of you over the first 9 years of producing events, and we can’t wait to see you all again, and to see what the next 9 + years of producing events and fostering friendships looks like.
Take care of you and yours. Wash your hands. Take social distancing seriously. Self-isolate where possible. Our healthcare system and healthcare workers need you more than ever right now.
All the best,
Gary Robbins, Geoff Langford, and the CMTR team.
Thursday March 12th
CAP CRUSHER POSTPONEMENT
Hello all runners, it is with a heavy heart but a clear conscience that we announce that our best current option is to postpone the Cap Crusher races. At this point we will not be treating this as a cancellation; we’ll review the situation over the coming weeks and hope to identify a reasonable replacement date asap. In 9 years of producing events, this is the very first time we’ve ever had to postpone an event. This decision most certainly does not come lightly on our end.
After the recent national and international events, input from land managers, local, provincial and federal health authorities, and fully considering the implications of continuing with the event on participants, volunteers, our crew, and the community, it was clear that our only honest choice at this point was to not proceed with our event this weekend.
We spent a great deal of time last night and this morning, investigating the latest information about the situation, for as everyone knows this is very fluid and changes by the hour right now. The decision this morning primarily came down to the consistent message from experts about “flattening the curve”. A key tipping point for us was an email late yesterday from a registered Cap Crusher runner letting us know they would not be attending as they had just had a positive test for COVID-19.
It is our belief right now that the virus is already within the trail running community, and that it’s only a matter of time before many of us begin to feel those affects, both directly and indirectly through family member’s health concerns. This will certainly begin to impact our local medical system. We all need to do our part to help “flatten the curve”.
Most of you will be wondering about refunds and/or deferrals. This event is pretty much a break-even event for us, and at this point we have a high ratio of ’sunk costs’. Some of these costs can be reallocated to a rescheduled event, but not recovered. We’ll be working with suppliers today to sort out logistics and costs. Best case scenario right now, if all our calls to suppliers go perfectly throughout the day today, we could maybe recoup a total of $25 per person. I think most would agree, let’s see how the next few weeks unfold and attempt to still hold the Cap Crusher races later in the season. We cannot say with any certainty what a reschedule date might look like, but we promise to keep you appraised throughout, and to attempt to source answers as soon as humanly possible.
We wish you all the best through this unprecedented time, and we will genuinely miss seeing all of your smiling, happy, smelly, sweat stained, beautiful faces this weekend.
Gary Robbins and Geoff Langford