RACE OVERVIEW

The Black Hills 100 is a challenging ultramarathon held on the Centennial Trail (Trail #89) in the northern Black Hills of South Dakota. Featuring over 16,000 feet of elevation gain for the 100M event, the race follows an out and back course, beginning and ending in legendary Sturgis, SD. What the Black Hills lack in altitude, they make up for in relentless hills that offer a unique challenge compared to other western ultras.

Course Overview

  • Surface: Dirt, rocks, single-track trail, double-track ATV trail, as little pavement as possible.
  • Course: Centennial Trail (Trail #89) and Deerfield Trail (Trail #40)
  • Elevation Profile: Up. Then down. Then up again. Repeat.
  • Host Town: Sturgis, South Dakota
  • Average Late June Weather: High of 79 degrees, low of 53 degrees, chance of afternoon thunderstorms.

Fun Facts

  • The Centennial Trail was created in 1989 in recognition of South Dakota’s centennial, hence the trail’s name and number. Originally a mixture of single-track trail and old logging roads, over the past 30 years the trail has been rerouted numerous times to create a mostly single-track route. At 111+ miles, it is the longest trail in South Dakota.
  • The top three men and women in the 100 mile race receive a hand painted buffalo skull designed by a local Native American artist. Runners can also earn the special Man/Woman in Black skull by completing each of the four distances we offer (30K, 50K, 50M and 100M). The buffalo skull is also the symbol that appears on Centennial Trail markers and is the inspiration for our race logo.
  • Sturgis, our host town, is home of the world-famous Sturgis Motorcycle Rally, which draws upwards of half a million bikers each August.

Learn about Sturgis, South Dakota

RACE OVERVIEW

The Black Hills 100 is a challenging ultramarathon held on the Centennial Trail (#89) in the northern Black Hills. Featuring over 16,000 feet of elevation gain for the 100M event, the race follows an out and back course, beginning and ending in legendary Sturgis, SD. What the Black Hills lack in altitude, they make up for in relentlessly rolling hills that offer a unique challenge compared to other western ultras.

Course Overview

  • Surface: Dirt, Rocks, Single track Trail, double track dirt roads, minimal pavement
  • Course: Centennial Trail and Trail 40 (50 & 100 Mile Distance)
  • Elevation Profile: Constant ups and downs
  • Hosting Town: Sturgis, South Dakota
  • Average  Daytime Temperature: High of 79 Degrees.  Low of 53 Degrees

Fun Facts

  • The Centennial #89 trail is named after the 100 Year anniversary (1889-1989) of South Dakota becoming a state.
  • Top 3 100 mile winners receive a hand painted buffalo skull. Additional ways to earn a sacred buffalo skull is to complete all distances offered
  • Sturgis, the host town, is also know for having the most popular Motorcycle Rally on the planet.

Event Media

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The real scoop on Little Elk Creek. ... See MoreSee Less

Comment on Facebook

Best photographer ever😂😂

Till more rain comes this weekend. 😉 😂🤣

Last year by the time I got there the robe was broke. Miss Shelley and I had to hold on to each other to get across.

Great update Randy! Thank you!

Thanks Randy

What mile is the creek?

Linnet Lasater Walter

Thanks for the video. A lot of minds at ease now...

For everyone wondering about Little Elk Creek. ... See MoreSee Less

Comment on Facebook

Sweet, looking good! Thanks for the video update

In the two years I ran it was bone dry. I definitely need to get back out there in a wet year just to see that

Thanks so much for the update! Looks absolutely doable!!

Looking good!

First time runner here- do the 18-ers cross this?

Cruz Arredondo

They say that 50 is the new 40. Or maybe it’s the new 49. Whatever the hell it is, the old dude on the right is the big 5-0 today. So y’all give Ryan a big HAPPY BIRTHDAY!🍺🍺🍺🤠🤠🤠 ... See MoreSee Less

They say that 50 is the new 40. Or maybe it’s the new 49. Whatever the hell it is, the old dude on the right is the big 5-0 today. So y’all give Ryan a big HAPPY BIRTHDAY!🍺🍺🍺🤠🤠🤠

Comment on Facebook

Happy Birthday, Ryan!

Happy Birthday Ryan!

Happy Birthday Ryan!!!

HaPpY bIrThDaY Ryan!

Happy birthday Ryan .

Happy Birthday Ryan!!!

Happy Birthday Ryan!

Happy Birthday Ryan!

Happy Happy Birthday!! See you in a few weeks 🏃‍♀️

Happy birthday Ryan!

Happy birthday Ryan!!!

Happy Birthday, Ryan!

Happy Birthday... you don’t look a day over 30 😜

Happy birthday Ryan hope your day is awesome.

Happiest Birthday and many merry more!

Happy Day and to the next !

Happy birthday, Ryan!!🎉🎂

Happy birthday!!

Happy Birthday!

Prime time! Happy Birthday!

Happy birthday!

Happy 50th Birthday Ryan. Enjoy your day.

Happy 50th Birthday Ryan! Have a great day!!

Happy birthday

Happy 50th Ryan!

Spent the morning clearing the Centennial trail from the Silver City road back to the Pilot Knob trailhead. Almost seems like we’re making this too easy for you guys. ... See MoreSee Less

Spent the morning clearing the Centennial trail from the Silver City road back to the Pilot Knob trailhead. Almost seems like we’re making this too easy for you guys.

Comment on Facebook

Thanks for the efforts Ryan Phillips

You guys are too awesome!

Thanks for all your hard work! We will appreciate it!

So your saying there's a chance I'll beat the cutoffs... thank you

We sure appreciate you!!!

Appreciate all of the hard work! I know what trying to get a trail in shape before an ultra is like. Lots of weeks of hard work are entailed, especially when Mother Nature is on a tear!

Thank you!!!

Thank you!

AN ELK CREEK CROSSINGS UPDATE AND THE EXISTENCE OF PLAN B

Well, hello there. I bet that headline got your attention, huh? Let’s just start off right away by stating loud and clear that our Plan A for this year’s race is to use our normal course that we’ve all grown to know and love (and maybe hate a little in a love/hate sort of way). But we also have an obligation to give you all a heads up that Plan B does exist.

So here’s the situation: We had a very wet May here in the Black Hills, late May particularly. On May 22nd the Hills got hammered with a snowstorm that dumped 3+ feet of heavy, wet snow in some areas. Right after that, those same areas received upwards of 2 inches of rain over the next week. I’m not the greatest with math, but I do know that when you add all of that up what you get is a shit ton of water that has to go somewhere. One of those somewheres is the normally docile Elk Creek, which our course crosses 5 times within about 1 mile. We checked the Elk Creek crossings last Saturday, June 1st, and the creek was running all out balls (these are highly technical hydrological terms here, so try to keep up). If the race had been last weekend, we would not have been sending runners across the creek. It just would not have been safe. The good news is that we went back out this morning and things were MUCH improved. The creek is still flowing, but has come down significantly and was crossable without ropes (ropes will be in place on race day). If the race were this weekend, we would have been totally fine sending runners across the creek.

In actuality, the race isn’t for another 3 weeks. Lucky for us, we’ve entered a warmer, dryer, much more summer-like weather pattern, and that pattern is forecast to continue for the next couple weeks at least. The creek is flushing out all of that excess water and will continue to come down. We are fairly confident at this point that things will return to a more normal status and that we’ll be good to go with our regular course on June 28th. Having said that, we can’t very well just stand around with our fingers up our noses and just hope for the best. A plan is only as good as its backup plan. Enter Plan B.

We know that by this point all of you who are registered have put in the training, made your travel plans, and are as ready to run as you’re gonna get. Well you’re gonna run, come hell or high water (literally). We’ll skip the nitty gritty details of Plan B for now since it is still Plan B and we don’t want to jumble your brains with potentially unnecessary information. In a nutshell, if something crazy happens in the next few weeks and we can’t cross Elk Creek that limits us to trails north of the creek crossings. In order to avoid having you run back and forth on the Centennial trail repeatedly until you get your mileage in, Plan B would incorporate some recently constructed single-track trails on the Sturgis Trails system, which connects in to the Centennial trail, to form large loops. This is not our ideal course (it’s called “Plan B” for a reason), but the other option would be to not run at all, and that’s a pretty shitty option. Rest assured, if Plan B becomes necessary, these trails would take you to some beautiful places, and they would still give you that good old-fashioned Black Hills ass kicking in the process.

So there it is, you have been given a proper heads up. Because you needed one more thing to think about during taper, right? To reiterate: Plan A is still Plan A. But we do have Plan B in our back pocket just in case. We will provide updates over the next couple of weeks via both Facebook and emails to registered runners. If it did come down to implementing Plan B, we would hope to make the final call by June 21st, one week before race day, at the very latest. Of course, if we do have to implement Plan B, much more information would be coming regarding routes, aid stations, etc. But, yet again for those in the back, at this point we are pretty confident that Plan A will be in place on race day. Stay tuned and maybe do a sun dance or two for good measure to kill the time during taper.

See ya in Sturgis!

Chris and Ryan
... See MoreSee Less

Comment on Facebook

I heard plan B included climbing Bear Butte 10 times. Is this true?

Let's face it, the coolest photos come from the creek crossing

And there it is. I knew there would be a super informational and entertaining message coming. Did not disappoint. 😂😂 Thanks!

Looking forward to it!

Thanks for the update, can’t wait to come back!

Thanks so much for the update!! Whether we run plan A or B it’s still going to be a blast! I’m planning on wet and muddy! Haha

At least the post was entertaining. Thank you for the mind nuggets.

Send em through the creeks!! I’ll donate water wings for the weekend!! 🤣🤣

Pat Johnson Randy Morman Looks like maybe a fun creek crossing this year. 🤷🏻‍♀️ Good thing I’m not afraid of them anymore!

Do you guys need volunteers

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