The Barkley Marathons: the hellish 100-mile race with 15 finishers in 36 years

The Barkley Marathons: the hellish 100-mile race with 15 finishers in 36 years

The Barkley Marathons: the hellish 100-mile race with 15 finishers in 36 ye...

Participants in the Tennessee race must negotiate extreme temperatures, wild terrain and more than 50,000 feet of accumulated ascent

At 6.54am on 8 March 2022, 39-year old Johanna Bygdell from Sweden was perched next to her tent in the middle of Frozen Head State Park, Tennessee, eating breakfast with her boyfriend when she finally heard the noise she had been both craving and dreading. It was the blowing of a conch, marking one hour until the start of arguably the world’s most hellish race: the Barkley Marathons.

“Finally, let’s get the party started,” she thought.

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