The main problem with the course I had was the turn around...it was a dead stop turn. The 2nd water stop was well organized but the 1st was not. Lots of people there but they weren't passing out drink. The only other thing I may change would be some way of letting top runners know what place they were in during the race. I enjoyed the post race food.
Fantastic event! I will admit some bias because it is organized by my home-town track club and I know the people sweating away to make everything happen. Salem Lake is a beautiful location and combines some aspects of a road course and a trail course. The surface is mostly natural packed dirt (short sections paved) and the path is wide enough for four or more runners abreast in most places. It was a little soft in places from recent heavy rains, but there was clearly significant maintenance done for the race because problem spots had been filled and graded. It is mostly flat to rolling, in 50k I accumulated less than 700 feet of total climbing. Pre-race communication by E-mail was timely, complete, and clear. Packet pickup was at the race location either the night before or the morning of the event - my night-before pickup was quick and easy. Weather this time of year is variable, but that means we at least have a chance of perfect, and that is what we got this year. The volunteers are awesome, directing people at turn-arounds, and running the aid stations. There were lots of choices for fuel at the two (kind of three) main aid stations, everything from doughnuts and cookies to pb&j sandwiches to go with the typical water and sports drink. The fact that the course is made up of 12.5k loops and the start/finish is at the lake clubhouse is great for spectators. With binoculars fans can follow runners around much of the course from the clubhouse deck. My favorite part is the people, Twin-City Track Club is top-notch! I had a delightful 50k experience and I will always have one of these events (50k, 25k, or 50k relay) on my calendar each year.
Very well organized race on a fun and scenic course. Just enough elevation change to keep it interesting and allow you to run fast! The looped course allows you to access your vehicle or drop bag every 7.8 miles. This would be a very good option for someone looking to run their first ultra-marathon.