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7:03 AM Mon, Dec. 17th

3 finish grueling Glassford Hill run in under an hour

Run for the Hill of It participants exceed expectations in annual ‘fun’ event

Three runners finished their trip up and down the Glassford Hill Trail in less than an hour on Saturday, Sept. 29, during the Run for the Hill of It, a demanding 10K “fun” run.

About 25 runners ran/hiked in the 5K fun run, said Brady Peck, recreation coordinator with the Town of Prescott Valley.

The 10K runners left from Glassford Hill Middle School, ran to the top of the hill and back to the school — about 6.2 miles — in what Peck called an “impressive” performance.

“I have a hard time thinking about it,” he said, as his expectation was that the run would take over an hour.

The races were not timed, but Peck, stationed at the finish line, said three people completed the 10K in less than an hour, with the fastest runner crossing the line in 48 minutes.

“It’s really more of a fun hike environment. Partnering with timers is something we can consider for the future,” Peck said. “Most of the feedback, however, indicated it was a nice fun environment, not competitive, for those who just wanted to enjoy it.”

The trail, of course, is not flat and not conducive for people looking to create a best time or qualify for a half or full marathon. Also, the trail is not paved, and the town does not advertise the event as a race.

“It is a completely different beast. There are rocky areas where you really need to watch your footing on the way up,” Peck said.

The Glassford Hill Trail on the west side of town opened in 2016, the first year of the Run for the Hill of It. The following year had few participants and the town declined to hold the event. This year, with better advanced notice, and temperatures in the 70s, the race had a great turnout. Peck said he expected about 50 and was pleased to see 70 people participating.

Parks and Recreation employees drove all the water and first-aid equipment to stations up the trail in a utility task vehicle, not an easy chore, he said.

The 5K run begins at the base of the trail and goes up about two-thirds of the way and back down. Peck said he’d like to see even more people join in the event next year, which probably will take place the same time of the year, the last Saturday in September.

It depends on hunting season. Much of the trail is on Bureau of Land Management or Arizona state land, Peck said.

“We have to take the opening of hunting season into consideration,” he said.