I had a blast at the OT100. I mean, I suffered a lot--but that's what you sign up for when you run a hundo--pushing yourself to your limits. And that we did! But, I also had a blast--it was an experience like no other, and I'll never forget it.
The Ozark Trail 100 Mile Endurance run is a point-to-point race--no loops, you won't see anything twice. Most people stay at the Bass' River Resort (which is the location of the finish line) and either take the bus to the start line or have their crew drive them there. It's about an hour drive. There is also a mandatory pre-race briefing & spaghetti dinner the night before the race, when they will go over all of the details you need to know.
Single track trail, 12,000+ feet of elevation gain, many creek crossings, aid stations no more than 10 miles apart. You'll be running the trails using the already established Ozark Trail markers, so keep your eyes out for those. There aren't many additional signs put up by the race organizers, so you really have to pay attention. And the trails are almost completely covered in leaves. My feet were wet for a lot of the race, from all of the water crossings. There is a variety of terrains to cover with some technical parts on some pretty wicked hills.
The aid stations had all types of food--from the standard bananas, gels, chips, soda, etc., to avocado wraps, deer burgers, potato soup, eggs & bacon. Just about anything you can think of that one might want or need when running such a distance. The people organizing the aid stations really get into it and make it an awesome experience. There could be disco lights, music, a bonfire, a happy doggo or two, as well as yoga mats & foam rollers, even space heaters and sleeping bags.
As with other trail runs, the other runners are just awesome. There is a feeling of camaraderie and kinship when people get out on the trails to cover great distances, and this race was no exception. The race organizers are super cool and know everything there is to know about this forest. There is an award ceremony after the race is finished when the finishers gets their belt buckle, and the winners get their awards. This is really cool to get your buckle with the other runners and is a very fitting way to end the race. They even have a plaque for the last finisher, called "Last Mule in the Barn".
I would love to run this one again someday.