Loud Thunder

Loud Thunder Forest Preserve in Illinois City offers 10.5 miles of trails.


With just under two weeks until the Q-C Marathon, I’m sure everyone is starting their taper. For me, these are the most challenging weeks of a training block. Just make sure you are eating and sleeping well over the next few weeks. Taper can bring out the best in people, so for the support network around them, understand they may be a little irritable!

On September 28, 4sta Hike will be returning to the Loud Thunder Forest Preserve.

I created this race due to the challenges training for mountain races can be living here in the Quad-Cities. While the course is a short 1-mile loop, it boasts 300 feet of elevation gain and 300 feet of elevation loss packed in it. You are going to work muscles you didn’t know you have on some of the steep hills. Yeah, we don’t have those big mountain views, but we’ve got some tough terrain that is synonymous with many popular Beast Coast races.

While the course may be challenging, it’s doable for all fitness levels. Being a timed event, 4 hours, it allows everyone an opportunity to run as many loops as they want. Some folks will be out there moving quickly for all 4 hours while others will be enjoying the scenery at a leisurely pace. While it is a race, you will find yourself among some great individuals on the trail.

The best part of the event is that all proceeds from the race go back to Loud Thunder! If you’ve spent any time out there, you know it’s a gem. The proceeds from the 2018 event were used for trail signage in the heart of the park. I’m not going to lie, I have found some of the most challenging terrain in the preserve and make sure you get to know it on a personal basis.

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Become a Member

This event wouldn’t happen without the support of some amazing sponsors as well. All the companies below have stepped up to help in a big way (in one form or another). A huge thank you to each of them for offering to support the runners, race and the preserve!

You can Google 4sta Hike for more information or sign up for the race here: https://ultrasignup.com/register.aspx?did=68616

Jeramy Duffee is an RRCA Running Coach and an ACE Certified Personal Trainer with racing and coaching experience ranging from 5K’s to 100+ mile trail races. For running or coaching inquiries, he can be reached at swingthegate@gmail.com

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Jeramy Duffee is an RRCA Running Coach and an ACE Certified Personal Trainer with racing and coaching experience ranging from 5K’s to 100 mile trail races. To submit future column topics or for any running related questions, he can be reached at swingthegate@gmail.com