One of the most interesting and challenging backcountry ski races on the planet celebrated 11 years of memorable moments and amazing athletic feats in 2008. The 11th annual Elk Mountains Grand Traverse is a backcountry ski race that follows mail routes that connected the Colorado mining towns of Crested Butte and Aspen in the 1880s.

It kicked off at the stroke of midnight, March 28, and is a one-of-a-kind test of endurance and smarts, requiring avalanche awareness, backcountry athleticism, winter camping knowledge and map reading skills all wrapped in one.

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Racers traverse behind the San Moritz Condos on Hunter Hill Road about an hour after the start.

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