It all started in 1955.
Wendell T. Robie sought to prove horses could endure 100 miles in one day. Robie and five other horsemen rode the Western States Trail from Tahoe City to Auburn. From there, the Western States Trail Foundation and Tevis Cup were born.
The Tevis Cup has been held annually since. Riders from around the world come to test the world-famous Western States Trail and try to complete the race in under 24 hours.
Tevis veteran Gordy Ainsleigh sought out on his own journey to prove he could complete the Tevis Cup course on foot. He crossed the finish line in Auburn 23 hours and 42 minutes later.
The run gained popularity in the 1970s, growing from one runner to 14 in 1977 and to 143 in 1979. Today, the Western States Endurance Run has become one of the elite trail running events and is the oldest ultra run in the world.
Runners locally and internationally try their luck at the trail every year at the race that begins at Tahoe’s Olympic Valley and ends at Placer High’s LeFebvre Stadium. Western States is an exclusive club, as runners have to either qualify for the race or be selected through a lottery.
In 2023 another run.
One qualifier begins in Auburn and has grown into one of the elite trail running events in its brief history. The Canyons Endurance Runs is a part of the UTMB World Series and one of four races in the U.S. that has a golden ticket to the Western States.
The 2022 edition took place April 23, when the 100k course records for men and women were broken. The Canyons features 100k, 50k and 25k events and is adding a 100-mile race in 2023.
With three major trail events in the city, Auburn has earned its endurance capital title. Many runners in these events flock to Auburn for training, while the locals proudly talk about their advantage from running the race courses.
Auburn has become a home for endurance enthusiasts, by foot and hoof.
-by Jordan Georgeson
CLICK HERE to see the original article and photos in Gold Country Media.