In Tubbs’ early years, a woman like Danelle Ballengee would have been described as “a slip of a girl,” and she would have been presumed to be frail. True, this professional multi-sport adventure racer barely comes up to the chin of the shortest of her three male teammates. And while she’s a lightweight on the scale, she is a heavyweight champion in the annals of endurance sports.
Beginning in 1995, Danelle entered some 450 endurance events, finished in the top three in 90 percent of them and won many. Marathons, duathlons, triathlons, mountain races, desert races and such grueling multi-day, multi-sport team endurance competitions as the Raid World Championships, Eco-Challenge and Primal Quest Expedition Adventure Race. Danelle Ballengee has done them all – and done very well indeed. As a member of the Tubbs Snowshoe Racing Team since 1994, she has dominated snowshoe racing. In the stretch between 1997 and 2001, she entered more than 100 snowshoe races and won them all, an unrivaled record that may never be surpassed.
In February 2006, she won the Gold Run Winter Triathlon in Breckenridge, CO, in 1 hour, 50.8 seconds – some 18 minutes ahead of the second-place woman. She came in eighth overall in this event that includes trail running (snowshoes permitted but not required), mountain biking on a snow-covered trail and Nordic skiing.
Danelle won the 10K Jeremy Wright North American Snowshoe Championships at Beaver Creek, CO, with a time of 55 minutes, 17 seconds, nearly two minutes ahead of the runner-up, who came in 57:02, the 3rd place finisher timed at 58:32, and the 4th place finisher nearly a minute after that. Danelle does not just win snowshoe races. She wins big. Just image her trophy case!
She also serves on the Rocky Mountain regional board of the U.S. Snowshoe Association, which promotes both competitive and recreational snowshoeing, sanctions amateur competitions and spearheads snowshoeing’s educational efforts.
A kinesiology and biology graduate from the University of Colorado, she divides her time between Summit County, CO, and Moab, UT, for the mountains and the red-rock desert provide nature’s beautiful training grounds, inspiration and even spiritual uplift – a necessary balance for a woman who otherwise lives by the stopwatch.
Danelle also is a personal trainer and event organizer. I’m Crazy Events, her whimsically named company, puts on numerous events, including Colorado’s annual Swift Skedaddle Snowshoe Race. Clearly, her motivational well runs deep, and she seeks to inspire others as well. She created a video on learning to snowshoe. Her training website, www.TrainingRx.com and her clinics on sports and fitness topics are directed at anyone who wants to become better, faster, stronger or healthier. She counsels people from elite endurance athletes to potato people who want to get off the couch.
She always tells her audiences, to “get as much into each day as you can.” She certainly does.
As you peruse the list of Danelle’s race results below you’ll surely notice something very unfamiliar – her absence on the podium during the 2006/07 season… On December 13, 2006 while out for a routine 10 mile run in Moab, Danelle slipped on a patch of black ice and fell about 60 feet injuring herself severely. Amazingly, and thanks to her dog Taz, she survived 52 hours in temperatures that ranged from the low 20s at night to the mid-40s during the day.
Click on any of the links below to read more about Danelle’s amazing story:
ESPN Outdoors News (http://sports.espn.go.com/outdoors/general/news/story?id=2704879)
Summit Daily News (http://www.summitdaily.com/article/20061222/NEWS/61222011)
Planet Ultra Marathon (http://planetultramarathon.wordpress.com/2006/12/28/the-stunning-rescue-of-danelle-ballengee/)
Everyone at Tubbs is very thankful that Danelle is recovering nicely and slowly getting back into training. We are proud she is on our team and look forward to seeing her up on the podium again!
Significant Recent Race Results
Adventure Racer of the Year, 2002, ‘04 and ‘05 Everest Award Winner: As recognized by Competitor Magazine (’02) and Adventure Sport Magazine (‘04) and Teva Mountain Games (‘05).
Snowshoe Racing: Over 100 first place finishes including a 3 year undefeated streak. Winningest snowshoe racer in world. (1994-2006)
Colorado 14ers Female Speed Record: Amazing record attempt involving climbing all of Colorado’s 55 14,000 ft. peaks. Solo female record: 14 days, 14 hours, 49 min. Record set in July of 2000.
Eco Challenge Adventure: Week long expedition race including trekking, biking, kayaking, and rapelling. Teams of 4. 2nd Place 2002.
Adventure Racing World Championships: 3.5 days through Newfoundland, Canada. Teams of 4, race includes biking, running and kayaking. 2004 World Champions.
Hi-Tech Adventure Race Series: 2002 and ‘01 National Champions (1st place) and winners of the Series, including 1st place in 5 of 8 races. Winner of the Series final in 2004.
Balance Bar 24 Hour Adventure Race Series: 5-race series, Teams of 3. 1st Place in Series, Series Champions, 2002 and 2003.
Primal Quest Adventure Race: The worlds “Richest” Adventure. 4-7 day team adventure race. 1st Place Team in 3 of 3 years of the event. 2002, 2003, 2004.
Raid World Championships: Prestigious 5 day adventure race in Patagonia, Argentina. Canoeing, running, inline skating, horseback riding, climbing, and biking. Teams of 4. 1st place in 2004.
Mt. Taylor Winter Quadrathlon: Prestigious bike, run, ski, and snowshoe race to 11,000 ft Mt. Taylor and
back. Winner (1st place) in ’94-95, ’97-98, 2000-05 Course record holder.
Adventure XStream: Solo adventure races including biking, running, kayaking, ropes, and navigation. 8 of 8 1st place finishes from 2001-06.
Winter Triathlon National and World Championships: Event including running, biking on snow, cross country skiing. National Champion 2006. 8th in World Championships.
US Rogaine Championships: 24 hr orienteering race. 1st place 2006, 2-person team. Team Spyder.
Wild Onion Urban Adventure Race: 24 hr team race including running, canoeing, biking, scootering,
skating, orienteering, kayaking and coasteering. 2nd place team, 2003-01.
Extreme Adventure Hidalgo: 4-day, 3 stage adventure race through Mexico. 1st place team. 2002 & 04.
Salomon Winter Adventure Race: 2 day, 2 stage Winter Adventure Race (skiing, snowshoeing, mtn. biking.) U.S.’s most prestigious winter adventure race. 1st Place Team, 2002.
Firecracker 50 Mountain Bike Race: Challenging bike race in Rocky Mountains. 1st place overall, 2004.
24 Hrs of Moab Mountain Bike Race: Solo bike race in Moab, UT. 2nd overall in 2005.
Pikes Peak Marathon: Notable marathon to summit of 14,000 ft Pikes Peak and back. 4 of 4 time champion: 1994-97. 2nd in 2005.
Recent Awards, Honors & Achievements
2006, 2002-04, 1994-00 National Snowshoe Champion
2005 Sportswoman of Colorado Hall of Fame inductee
2005, 93-94 Sportswoman of Colorado, Triathlon and Adventure Racing
2005 “Everest” Award Winner for Excellence in Sport/Adventure Racing
2004 Female Adventure Racer of the Year, Adventure Sports Magazine
2003 Adventure Team of the Year (member), Team Nike ACG/Balance Bar, Adv Sports Magazine
2002 Adventure Racer of the Year, Competitor Magazine
Bob began his hiking career at the age of 6 and has been active in the outdoors ever since as an experienced hiker, climber, snowshoer, and trail maintainer. He has climbed the NH 4000 footers and the winter Catskill 3500 foot peaks in addition to hiking throughout the US and Canada. He acquired his first pair of Tubbs snowshoes over 35 years ago and has never stopped playing in the snow.
Bob is a volunteer trail maintenance supervisor for the New York New Jersey Trail Conference and a hike leader for the Appalachian Mountain Club (AMC), Green Mountain Club (GMC), and Catskill 3500 Club. He has lead hundreds of hikes and snowshoe trips throughout the eastern seaboard with particular emphasis on the northeast.