Saturday, September 26, 2015

2016 Louisville's Lovin' The Hills 50k/15m/6m Registration

Race registration is open at the current HeadFirst Performance official website for LLTH. 

Entry Fees:
                              Till Jan 1                  After Jan 1

6 Mile                        $30                              $35

15 Mile                      $50                              $60

50K                           $60                              $70

Online registration will close February 3.

The 2015 info & links listed in the sidebar of this blog are in the process of being updated to 2016.  All the courses for 2016 will essentially be the same as 2015 with only very minor changes -- unless the Forest Service makes last minute changes (which they have done before).

Updates will be posted here as needed up to a couple days before race day.


Saturday, February 7, 2015

2015 LLTH Results and Race Recap

The 2015 race results are in.

The 12th running of LLTH is now history.  There was a record number of registrants & finishers.  Most notable was the big increase for the 6 mile run.
As usual, the weather & course conditions played a part this year.  The course was still frozen at the start & for most of the morning with temps in the 30's.  But as the sun rose higher in the sky & with strong south winds, temps would rise into the 60's & the course would eventually become very muddy.

More PHOTOS by Headfirst Performance can be found here:

Most everything went very well with no glitches or mishaps that I'm aware of.  There were more problems than usual this year with course marking vandalism before the race but could probably be attributed to the unusually large numbers of visitors to the park during the week.  Cynthia Heady (RD) worked Friday night replacing signs & flagging (several times at one location in particular).  With the warm weather, it was quite crowded Saturday on the trails around Tom Wallace Park (near the lake on the 2nd section), but the hikers were very kind to runners & most stepped off the narrow trails to allow passage.

2015 winners:

50k:  Troy Shellhamer  4:41:02                            Jessie Miller  5:46:17

15m: Mike Baird           1:56:49                           Alicia Heyne  2:13:32

6m:   Anthony Kuntz       39:16 (course record)    Suzan R .          53:53


Obtaining the 200 bonus buffs for the race was a real fiasco this year.  Last year was bad . . . this time with broken promises, ignored phone calls & just poor service again, it's been decided to not do business with Buff, Inc. anymore.  The "last resort" order (replacing our lost custom buff order) that was to be overnighted & received Thursday, actually came late Friday.  Somehow, working overtime Friday night, Headfirst Performance was able to add LLTH print to all the buffs. 

For those who went to Ken Combs Running Store for the early packet pickup Friday (6th) & didn't pick up a buff on race day should contact Headfirst Performance if you've not already done so -- or

 shirt & finisher medal:

a look ahead:

Received sad news that Larry Hilton, the Naturalist in the Forest Service who I work thru for the benefit of LLTH for many years, will be retiring this year.  Already LLTH has lost 7+ miles of challenging single track trail in the Yost section of the Forest.  Unfortunately, I don't see this trend ending, especially not having Larry to bat for us.  With management closing the last remnant of the old LLTH course in Yost (prematurely during race week I might add), a new course design looks to be necessary next year & in years to come.

Larry was also most generous & donated 2 large boxes of sox for runners!

Some in the 50k may have noticed this sign on the Siltstone Trail -- this might possibly alter the course here next year:

I do wish to say Congrats & Thanks to all runners who made 2015 LLTH a huge success.  Thanks also to the Headfirst Performance crew & all the volunteers.  Special thanks to Cynthia Heady who made this race happen & once again provided some great homemade soups & quiche for everyone!

If anyone has pictures they wish to share with others, post your link or send it to  Also, you can send any name spelling or results corrections to the same address.  Thanks. 


Thursday, February 5, 2015

2-5-15 LLTH last minute notes

Online registration from the Headfirst Performance website has closed.  Late registration is available at packet pickup on Friday (6th) at Ken Combs Running Store from 12 noon to 6:00 pm EST and on race morning from 6:30 - 7:30 am EST at the Horine Center at the FINISH area.

The time for the free pre-race pasta dinner at Quest Outdoors has been confirmed as 5:30 to 8:00 pm EST Friday night (6th).  The location will be at their store at 2330 Frankfort Road in Louisville.

The Forest had some very light rain & snow last night.  The trails are frozen with a light dusting of snow this morning.  With temps reaching the 40's & 50's the next couple days, you can expect to encounter muddy sections on race day.  Some of the stream beds will have some water flowing, but with careful stepping or jumping, you should be able to avoid the water.  This is on the Blue Trail (about mile 7) at the dam this morning:

Flagging is pink again this year.  Trail junctions will be marked with several flags & major junctions will also have signs or a volunteer on site.  Intermediate flagging is spaced approx. 100 to 200 feet along the entire course.

A couple notes about this week --

Small re-route:

A crew from the Forest Service mistakenly closed off & filled in (with brush & large downed trees) the last 200' of single track trail left in Yost.  The problem is, this short connector trail is used in the 15m & 50k to finish up the Yost loop (2nd section).  Last minute new trail construction (for one time use) is being performed today to remedy this situation.  It will be a little rough & steep but relatively short.  Apparently the Forest Service intends to close out this section permanently, so an alternate course looks to be in store for next year.

Bonus buffs (for 50k & 15m):

A phone call was received from Buff, Inc. on Tuesday informing us the custom designed buff order was somehow lost and buffs would not be available race day.  To hear this was beyond our belief.  This had been in the works since in December (sometimes with daily communications) with assured delivery.  In order to have any buffs for race day, they now have said they could deliver certain buffs from their catalog that they had in stock -- but since they didn't have 200 of any one design, there would have to be 3 different designs:  100 of one design (for 50k) and 50+50 (for 15m) of 2 different designs.  Headfirst Performance has said they could possibly add some LLTH print to the buffs, even with only a day notice.  Of course, this all depends on Buff, Inc. to come thru with delivery today.  The bonus buff is limited to the 1st 200 registered for the 50k & 15m.

Good Luck!


Wednesday, January 7, 2015

1-7-2015 LLTH update

Registration is still available at the official website of LLTH.   Entry fees increase after Tuesday, January 20.  Late registration & also packet pickup is available on Friday, Feb 6, at Ken Combs Running Store from 12 noon to 6:00 pm EST and on race morning from 6:30 - 7:30 am EST at the Horine Center (Lodge) at the FINISH area.

Training runs have been scheduled for Sunday, the 11th and Saturday, the 24th.  Details are listed in the 2015 FAQ.

Quest Outdoors recently announced they're having a FREE pre-race pasta dinner again this year at their store at 2330 Frankfort Road in Louisville (same location as the last 3 years) on Friday night, February 6.  The time has not been set yet, but last year was from 5:30 to 8:00 pm EST. 

The links to each of the courses are listed in the side menu of this blog.  There are no changes to the 6 mile course this year.  Since there are only minor changes to the layout of 15m & 50k, the 2015 course maps are the same as 2014.  Having recently obtained a new Garmin GPS watch though, the new readings suggest the mileages shown on these maps are a little overestimated.

Those familiar with the course will note these trail changes (layout & tread) from last year: 

1. The trailhead for the Blue Trail (start of the 2nd section of the race) has been shifted 200 feet down the gravel road towards the Conference Center.

2. The Siltstone Trail at mile 15.7/27.0 on the out-n-back for the 50k has been smoothed out by a Bobcat loader, filling in the 1 foot to 3 foot deep eroded ditch that ran mostly down the middle of the trail.  About 0.75 miles total of technical single track are now widened, smooth & very non-technical (the hill is still there).

A last minute update, including trail conditions, is scheduled to be posted a few days before race day.