Eagle Resident Lucie Hanes Places Second in Her Debut Leadville Trail 100

When Lucie Hanes of Eagle first started running four years ago, she had little expectation she’d reach the level of success she’s surmounted. At the 40th annual Leadville Trail 100 Run last Saturday, Hanes placed second for the women’s division with a time of 23:16:51. Known as one of the most challenging courses in the nation, runners encounter 15,000 feet of net gain over 100 miles, topping out at 12,532 feet across Hope Pass. Historically, less than 50% of entrants finish.

Hanes toed the start line at 4 a.m. on Aug. 19 with a buzz she knew allowed for extra speed. She had paced Eagle local Genevieve Harrison in her second-place finish in 2021 and learned valuable lessons that she says inspired her own journey to the Leadville 100.

While Hanes’ ultrarunning training regime is impressive, it’s how she balances being a full-time freelance journalist and competitive rock climber that takes her monumental achievement to the next level.

Hanes initially started running as a rest activity from climbing shortly after moving to Eagle because of the abundant access to trails. “I have a little bit of an all or nothing personality, so I ended up diving pretty deep into running without really realizing it,” she says. After her first race in the 2019 Leadville Marathon, she was hooked.

“Running gives me the chance to think about everything and climbing gives me the chance to think about nothing,” she explains. “I recently found out that I’m on the autism spectrum and that was really insightful for me because it made me realize there’s a reason that I’m looking for all these different ways to move my body … These two activities give me the mental space that I can’t find in normal day to day life.”

Outside of writing for outdoor lifestyle-inspired publications like Covered Bridge, Hanes helps organize the annual Outdoor Media Summit and offers sports psychology coaching, which she earned her degree in. After overcoming a major health crisis in 2022 due to overtraining and under-fueling, Hanes became particularly passionate about educating athletes on the importance of listening to their bodies.

lucie hanes

Photos courtesy of Life Time.

Hanes climbs three to four days a week at Rifle Mountain Park when weather allows, and on those climbing days she also completes a low-intensity run that’s between 45 to 60 minutes. On the days she’s not climbing, she does a long run between three to five hours or a speed interval workout, with a complete rest day once a week.

She says her support crew of Lina Simpson, Joel Simpson, fiancé Ben Rathbun and running coach Kelly Lutz remind her of the importance of community in the face of challenge. The last 10 miles of the race tested her physical limitations, but her and her team’s resilience enabled her to smash her goal.

“There will be countless highs and lows, and experiencing a low does not mean that there’s anything wrong, it’s just means that’s part of running 100 miles,” Hanes says. “The only way to get out of a low is to keep going.”

Hanes’ next goal is lasered on her biggest climbing project yet — sending a 5.14a mark. In her best single week as an athlete so far, she won the Ring the Springs 100k and sent 5.13c within days of each other.