The Vapor Trail 125 (VT125) is an ultra-endurance Mountain Bike Event. Not for the faint of heart. This event will challenge and push you to extremes you’ve most likely never experienced! For 2021, the event will start at 10 PM on August 27th, with riders finishing August 28th.
The VT125 is somewhat unique among endurance mountain bike events. It’s an all-night ride, but unlike a 24 hour race you won’t be at a place where you can re-stock, get shelter, or quit. During the 8 hours of darkness you will visit only one (1) Aid Station, and will enter a portion of the course where medical assistance is hours away. It gets very cold in that portion of the course, and you’ll need to be carrying any clothing changes you might need.
There are long sections of technical single track, some navigated in darkness. Riders have to have very good bike handling skills in addition to their climbing fitness, and must have demonstrated that they know how to ride carefully and self-rescue if they have a problem.
We often get requests for entry from people who, for example, just finished the Leadville 100. They think they’re ready for something 25% longer. But the mileage doesn’t tell the tale. Veterans of both the Vapor Trail 125 and Leadville 100 would agree with this statement:
The Vapor Trail 125 is like riding two Leadville 100’s in a row, and one of them is at night.
You may have done lots of racing, and you may be very fast. But if the events you conquer are the kind where you can get away with a water bottle and a couple gels in your jersey pocket, you haven’t done anything like the Vapor Trail 125. Races like that are great, we have great respect for the Leadville 100. Nothing wrong with dirt hundies and 24 hour racing, but we need to have an idea that you’ve seen some adventures with a little less structure.
The event starts at 10 PM on a bridge over the Arkansas River at 7,000 feet elevation. Participants ride through the night, and most of them through the entire next day never dropping back below 9,000 feet until the last 8 miles. The course draws a large circle through some of the highest mountains in North America. There are multiple high points near or above 12,000 feet. There are six long sustained climbs that each can take 2 hours or more to complete.
It can rain, it can snow, it can be windy and/or cold. The night is always cold in the high country, temps below freezing can be expected for 6 hours or more. There is roughly 17,000 feet (~5,200 meters) of cumulative climbing (accuracy confirmed by Strava).
There are 4 aid stations, and there are some people out on the course during the event, but people who get involved in this event need to know how to take care of themselves. On many parts of the course a rider can be 10 or more rugged miles from any kind of help. That rider needs to have the clothes needed, skills and tools for fixing a bike, water and nourishment, and good judgement. The people who participate in this event have to have done this sort of thing before and proven that they know what to do and what to have in order to take care of themselves. For this reason we require each rider to submit a ride resume prior to being allowed to register.
Officially, all riders are required to have at least one strong light suitable for riding on technical single track with a burn time of 5-7 hours. This light should be rated to 200 or more lumens. Also each rider must have a backup lighting system with a burn time of 8-12 hours. This backup light needs to be bright enough for the rider to use to ride slowly on a dirt road and be seen by other riders and vehicles, and bright enough to be used to get out of the woods in the event that the primary light fails. Each rider also needs a rear blinky light which can easily be seen by vehicles overtaking the rider and other riders.
To review our Frequently Asked Questions, click here.
Registration for the 2021 Vapor Trail 125 is now open! Click the shiny button below to get registered at imATHLETE.com.
The entry fee for the Vapor Trail 125 is $200 for solo racers and $225 for duo teams. There are early-bird discounts going until August 13th so don't delay, get signed up!
The fee is non-refundable, and your paid entry cannot be transferred to someone else. We understand that between on-line registration and race day life happens, and you may not get to fulfill your desire to race after paying. Entry fees are non-transferable and mostly non-refundable. Depending on your personal circumstances we may or may not be able to offer a partial refund.
NEW FOR 2021
We are adding Two Person Team Relay category in men’s, women’s and co-ed. The first rider of the duo team will race from the start of the race at the “F” Street bridge to Monarch Pass. This leg of the race is slightly longer and a tad more technical / difficult than the second leg of the race; which will start at Monarch Pass and follow the second half of the race course, finishing in Salida.
Monarch Pass is the ONLY place teams may switch from Racer #1 to Racer #2, (NO EXCEPTIONS)
In the two person duo team relay, only one racer is allowed on the course at a time! Violation of this rule is grounds for immediate disqualification of both team members.
Live Satellite Tracking
For 2021 the Vapor Trail 125 has partnered with Trackleaders to provide LIVE satellite tracking. You can use your own tracker, or rent one from Trackleaders.
Rental trackers will be available for pickup right after the rider's meeting at Absolute Bikes. Scott Morris from Trackleaders will be distributing trackers and be available to answer questions. The rental SPOT Gen3 trackers include batteries that will last the duration of the event.
The live tracking map will be hosted here: http://trackleaders.com/vapor21 and participants will show on tracking map within a half hour of registration.
Participants renting SPOTs are responsible for returning their trackers to race staff upon finish or scratch of the event. If you forget, you are responsible for timley shipping the device back to Trackleaders.
Questions? Email firstname.lastname@example.org
July 7, 2021
9:00am-11:00am — Online registration for Solo Men’s and Solo Women’s categories
11:00am-1:00pm — Online registration for Two Person Team Relay categories. Men’s, Women’s and CO-ED teams.
August 27, 2021
12:00pm-4:00pm — Packet pick up and racer sign in!
5:00pm — Racers meeting (Mandatory)
10:00pm — Race Start at the “F” Street Bridge!
August 28, 2021
10:00am-8:00pm — Race Finish
August 29, 2021
10:30am — Brunch and Awards