2024 Leadville Thread

I did the first ~80 miles to the base of the powerline climb inbound and was about 1 hour off my race pace at similar power numbers. Some of that is riding the descents more cautious because I was alone, but the lack of drafting and slower rolling dirt are the bigger contributors. Besides the drafting between powerline and twin lakes and back, there are other shorter sections. The start is typically really fast rolling with big draft effect, I think I was already 5 minutes off race pace before getting to the st. kevin’s climb.


Just a quick course update…top of Powerline is deep in snow as of yesterday. Gonna check out Columbine today.



Picked up the new leadville sled yesterday. As much as I still loved my spark RC, it’s about 7 years old and the new epic checked every box for me. It’s only ~1/2 lb heavier than my scott with 20mm more travel front and back, holds 2 bottles and has in-frame storage. Much more progressive geometry. I ended up going with the Expert build with GX transmission group and pretty nice carbon wheels. Swapped in an XXSL powermeter crank and an AXS wireless dropper (50% off at planet cyclery). For leadville, I’m honestly not sure this bike is going to make me any faster (maybe a little on the descents), but I think it will be great for some other courses and general trail riding.


Very nice. I will say I did something similar this year - upgraded my Oiz. I’m about 1# heavier, but picked up 20mm of travel front and rear, slacker geometry, and 20mm extra with the dropper.

I just did Wilmington Whiteface which is similar to Leadville believe it or not with long descents and climbs, and I PR’d all of the descents and singletrack sections by a good amount. And that was probably on narrower tires (2.2 Race King instead of 2.4 Wolfpack)

Can’t totally discount me just being better and more comfortable on the day, but I think there’s something to the more forgiving geometry and suspension for most people.

Edit, everyone likes pictures!


That’s a much more significant difference than I was expecting, good to know!

Here’s my stats for the columbine and powerline climbs. 2 from races. 1 pre ride.

They’re pretty close to each other. More deviation on the Powerline climb where fatigue is more pronounced.



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I feel like the Leadville camp is going to be a lot less useful now that it’s in early June. We still have a ski resort (Abasin) open this year. Hard for me to see the value of the camp for first timers if you can’t even get a real preview of Powerline and Columbine.


Here is my Leadville bike, hopefully it will get me a buckle!


Well…from what we’ve seen, yeah, can’t argue with this. Today we went up columbine and hit deep snow maybe 700 feet below the summit? (just a little bit higher than a little log cabin) It was still a pretty relentless climb but it would have been nice to be able to go all of the way. Not sure what they are going to do with the camp but heard rumors of snow removal.


Agree. I was really surprised they moved it up. In past years the Goat Trail was often not accessable, although I think two years ago it was. However usually around that time the snow is gone from Sugarloaf. I think 2019 was an exception when there had been late snow.

While it’s bad for the MTB Camp, the reason they switched it is they swapped dates with the Marathon & Heavy Half - because that group they were shoveling routes for the runners in the high country last year.

We’ve got news, Leadville Family. The Life Time Leadville Trail Marathon & Heavy Half and the Life Time Leadville Trail 100 MTB Camp will be swapping weekends in June 2024.

NEW 2024 Event Dates:

** Life Time Leadville Trail MTB Training Camp: June 13 – 16, 2024*
** Life Time Leadville Trail Marathon & Heavy Half: June 29, 2024*

It’s our commitment to give all Leadville Race Series participants the best opportunity to demonstrate all the Grit, Guts and Determination that goes into your training. This past year, The Leadville Trail Marathon & Heavy Half athletes were not able to summit the iconic Mosquito Pass due to weather complications. In 2024, our team wants to give these athletes the best opportunity to summit Mosquito Pass.

I would personally give thought to going with a group separate from the official “camp”.


Is anyone else volunteering at the camp this weekend? I have a 6:30am - 12:30pm shift at the Hagermen Aid Station. Planning on riding ~4 hours after that shift ends. Haven’t decided which section yet.

I’m not volunteering, but heading up to get out of the heat and will be doing some riding. Latest trail report I’ve seen said things are melting pretty quick and everything is clear except upper columbine and some sections of sugarloaf (but clear climbing up from the powerline side). I don’t expect columbine to be clear in the next couple weeks, but I hope sugarloaf is clear by the weekend.


Did a tune up race here in SoCal this past weekend.

Hardman- 67 miles, 7700ft(all in first ~35 miles). It was advertised as a gravel race but I decided to ride my MTB and test my Leadville setup. Somewhat of a strange course with all the climbing front loaded but a great prep for Leadville aside from the lack of altitude.

Bike was great(2023 Scott Spark RC) but the Maxxis Aspen STs will take some getting used to. Super fast on the flats but got squirrelly on the descents a couple times until I started trusting them more and leaning into corners. I’m going to run them again for stage race before making a final call.

Managed to hold 227w NP pretty steady for the whole race (3.3W/Kg) at an IF of .89 and felt surprisingly strong at the end of a 5 and a half hour race. Sucked down 100g/hr of carbs the whole time with zero GI issues.

All in all a success in my book. Now just gotta do it at 10k ft for an extra few hours.


Thanks, good intel. Looking forward to additional reports on these tires. There isn’t much “technical” cornering at leadville, but some really fast sections on some fire roads with loose over hard (major pucker factor), including some hairpins on lower columbine. I’ll be riding sweep at the stage race all 3 days and I’ll definitely be asking people what they think of those ST’s. It looks like a pretty ideal leadville tire.

That’s a serious IF for 5+ hours. Might be sandbagging that FTP a bit…


Yep this descent had some nice similarities to Powerline and Columbine so was a great test. Visibility was also terrible and that area of the course was generally very slippery which added some nice razzle dazzle to the day. Saw multiple guys go down hard.

I rode the STs in a local faster paced MTB series last week as well and they did great. So far I like them.

Definitely sandbagging the FTP. Depending on who you ask(TrainingPeaks, Garmin, Intervals.icu) I’m between 240-265. Overdue for a test.


Great I.F. for 5 hours. I have managed the same for 3 and thought I was doing well. Also about 3.3w/kg here. Probably will be aiming for 10hrs 30 but might change the estimate up or down after Camp.

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Not sure if anyone here is doing the camp, but there is a small forest fire going on currently in Twin Lakes.

Yikes. Stay safe folks.