What is RUFA?

Running Up For Air (aka RUFA) is an endurance mountain challenge originally created in Utah to raise money in support of the fight for improved air quality for those living along the Wasatch Front in Utah. 

RUFA involves running up and down a mountain outside of Salt Lake, for 6, 12 or 24 hours, with runners asked to get pledges for Breathe Utah, a 501(c)3 non-profit that works tirelessly for the benefit of everyone in Utah who is subject to our unique air pollution challenges.


What is RUFA-CO?

Running Up For Air - Colorado is the Colorado edition of Utah's RUFA, an endurance running event to raise awareness and money in support of the fight for improved air quality for all of us who live along the front range of Colorado, encompassing everything from Colorado Springs to Ft. Collins, and, like Salt Lake, subject to unsightly and unhealthy winter air.. 

RUFA-CO, March 9, 2019, involves running up and down a mountain outside of Denver for 3, 6 or 12 hours.  Here, too, runners are asked to get pledges for Protect Our Winters, a 501(c)3 non-profit that works tirelessly to reduce the effects of climate change, improve our air quality and preserve and protect our natural playgrounds.



Who is Suffer Better?

Headquartered in Boulder, CO, Suffer Better is a nonprofit working with the growing community of passionate endurance athletes who live and train by the mantra Suffer Better. Our mission is simple: To tap the inexhaustible power, focus, dedication, and commitment of the endurance athlete community to work with and support local nonprofits, protect our natural environment and improve local communities. Our platform of people, presentations and events works to inspire men and women to maximize their athletic gifts and give back to those less fortunate.  RUFA-CO is the perfect fit for who we are and what we do.



Why POW? Good question, easy answer.

Let’s start with their mission:

POW turns passionate outdoor people (us) into effective climate advocates. We lead a community of athletes, thought pioneers and forward-thinking business leaders to affect systemic political solutions to climate change.

And they believe, like we do, that achieving their, and our goals, takes collective action and starts with us each taking one step at a time. We’re all over that, since one thing we, as athletes do so well is step, and step again. Together we’ll make a difference.


Run up. Run down. Repeat. Raise $.


The Course

The course is laid out on single track and forest road in beautiful pine and aspen forest.

The course is laid out on single track and forest road in beautiful pine and aspen forest.


The Course

Occasionally steep and rocky, the forest road and singletrack course heads up from the start at 7700' through mature pine forest to the summit at 8500' - what we call Granite Peak.  The loop continues from the Peak, winding down and back to the start, where it all begins again. And again. Each lap is approximately 4 miles, with just over 800 feet of gain, and loss. Times are taken both at the top and at the start/finish of each lap. Inevitably, and not surprisingly, runners lingered over the spectacular view at Granite Peak before heading back down the hill. Check back here for a detailed course map as race day approaches.

For 2019, RUFA-CO, in keeping with our goal to work to improve our air, is taking steps to reduce our own footprint. We will be a cup-free event this year, so bring your refillable cups for morning coffee and your bottles for Skratch and water throughout the race. And we’re inviting all participants to carpool to the event, with a google doc to help you out with that coming soon.



Our Partners

Like most things in this life, you need and get help from good people to make events like RUFA-CO come together. These folks have all generously given us their money, their support and their products.  We cannot thank them enough.