Photo by: Hanna Whirty
We recently conducted an interview with Julian Carr - X Games Gold Medalist, 210 foot world record cliff jumper, and Cirque Series Founder.
While we've been friends with Julian for a while now, it was excellent to get a deeper view into his life, values, career, and his own fitness and nutrition.
Here's what Julian had to say:
Q: How did you get into skiing?
A: I grew up skateboarding and playing team sports like basketball, soccer and football. In 5th grade I first tried snowboarding. I crashed on my very first run and sprained my knee! I didn't touch snow again until 8th grade when my mom talked me into going with her. I'm sure glad she did. I immediately fell in love--knew I'd be skiing for life. It's kind of weird. If I wouldn't have tweaked my knee that first day snowboarding, I'm positive I would have never touched skis. Crazy!
A couple of my buddies did forest summer fire fighting. They said to be in their crew you had to run to the stream about 1/3 of the way up Olympus in under 30 minutes for eligibility to be a firefighter. I was like, I got this! I am boot-packing all winter long, etc... So next time I hiked it, I hiked as fast as possible. I got to the stream in 31 minutes! So I got addicted to hiking Olympus, chipping away at my time.
That first spring/summer/fall of trail running, I was hiking Mt. Olympus 4-6 times a week. I got my time to stream down to 22:51. A nice byproduct was I was seeing the beautiful sunsets and sunrises on these hikes and I was in the best shape of my life. For those that don't know, Mt. Olympus is approximately a six mile round-trip journey with a 4,000 ft. vertical. It's straight up and straight down. It was a mountain adventure in all respects. It certainly didn't feel like an insignificant "run". It was all out redline hiking, jogging when possible, just brutal awesome effort up the mountain. The way down was a full on agility test, tons of fun, almost felt like I was skiing. I would invite my friends. Most of them were like, "I'm not a runner", which is understandable. But I was like, "I'm not really a 'runner' either." This is different.
Anyway, fast forward a couple years. I was on the lookout for a mountain running race with stats similar to Mt. Olympus--six or seven miles with 3k' to 4k' vert. I was shocked to only find ultras, mud runs, obstacle course races, color runs, relay races, and lots of traditional marathons and 10k's. I couldn't believe I couldn't find a single real-deal mountain run race up to a badass peak and back down in the entire lower 48. From there I had a fleeting idea to create my own. Well the idea went from fleeting to top of mind. Got 'er done.