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O n the morning of July 8th, 2017, 600 riders from around the world will descended on the quiet community of Beaver, Utah for the 6th-annual running of the ‘Crusher in the Tushar’. Come see what all the fuss is about as the sixth edition beckons…ok, taunts those who dare toe the line.
This uniquely formatted race begins in historic downtown Beaver, Utah the birthplace of famed outlaw “Butch Cassidy” and finishes at Utah’s newest ski and Summer resort, Eagle Point. Featuring a 40/60 split between tarmac and dirt & gravel sectors, the 70 mile course accumulates over 10,000 feet of elevation gain and affords riders the opportunity to explore the stunning back country of Utah’s little-known Tushar Mountains and Fishlake National Forest.
Starting on pavement the route heads East on Beaver Canyon Road (State Road 153) climbing gently as it parallels the ambling Beaver River.
At mile 11 the real climbing begins as the course makes a right turn onto FR 137 where the road takes on an aggressive increase in gradient and riders encounter their first dirt sector lasting the next 21 miles. Soon thereafter the first of five generously-stocked First Endurance Aid Stations will greet riders at mile 18. The climbing continues for another 4.5 miles where the outbound portion of the course tops out at an elevation of over 10,000 ft!
Here your inner Speed-Demon will revel as you negotiate a white-knuckle, switch-backing, graveled & washboard-filled descent with nearly 4,000 ft. of elevation loss. This delivers riders into the picturesque Piute Valley where the pavement resumes at mile 31.
From Junction the course heads south onto Utah Scenic Byway US-89 as it rolls for 5 miles alongside the Sevier River, a designated Blue Ribbon trout stream, and into the town of Circleville.
This is where the route heads back onto dirt at the notorious Doc Springs Road (affectionately referred to by some as the “Sarlacc Pit“) with it’s deceptive grades, ruts and loose conditions.
At it’s termination 5 miles later, riders can pit-stop at the penultimate First Endurance Aid Station where a left turn back on to State Road 153 begins the leg-busting, lung searing & soul-crushing climb of the “Col ‘d Crush” !
At the summit riders will reach the ProForm King/Queen of the Mountain line at 9,400 ft.
3 miles beyond the KOM/QOM line the cool mountain air and ubiquitous aspens beckon along with the final First Endurance Aid-station at Bentenson Flat where the route bears North.
As Puffer Lake shimmers off of your right shoulder, this will signal where the dirt turns back to pavement for a final time as just under 4 excruciating miles now separate you from the finish line at the uppermost lift of Utah’s newest ski resort, Eagle Point.
With the final turn on to Upper Meadows Drive comes one-last kick in the proverbial nuts as a truly rude mile of pavement delivers you to a finishing elevation just shy of 10,500 ft. above sea level!
After crossing the finish line participants will be carried by stretcher (kidding…sort of) and treated to a post-race lunch at our finish line at Eagle Point Resort’s upper lodge. After awards, coast down the road to their lower lodge where you can also enjoy some fine libation from Uinta Brewing and watch that other bike race happening in July on one of their big screen TV’s.
Congratulations my friend, you’ve just Crushed the Tushars. And, yes, that pain in your legs may last a few weeks, but the bragging rights last forever!