Train to Hunt competition comes to Eagle for first time |

Train to Hunt competition comes to Eagle for first time

A Train to Hunt competitor completes one of the event obstacles.
Special to the Daily |

Train to Hunt Eagle

Saturday, June 18

7-8 a.m. — Check in

8:30 a.m. — Mandatory competitor meeting

9 a.m. — Hunter 3D Course starts

12:30 p.m. — Results of Hunters 3D course posted and heat assignments for the Meat Pack event will be available

1 p.m. — Mandatory competitors meeting and weight assignments for Meat Pack

1:30 p.m. —Meat Pack starts

4:30 p.m. — Meat Pack and Day 1 results posted and heat assignments for the Challenge Course

Sunday, June 19

8 a.m. — Mandatory competitors meeting

9 a.m. — Challenge Course starts

2 p.m. — Results of the Challenge Course posted

2:30 p.m. —Awards ceremony

Competition divisions

Train to Hunt includes 10 divisions:

• Men’s Open

• Women’s Open

• Men’s Masters (age 40-plus)

• Women’s Masters (age 40-plus)

• Men’s Super Masters (Age 50-plus)

• Women’s Super Masters (Age 50-plus)

• Archery Open

• Men’s Team

• Women’s Team

• Co-ed Team

Registration is $110 for all divisions. Competitors can register and find more information at

A stroll through the Eagle City Market during October is all it takes to experience the popularity of hunting in the Colorado high country.

Beginning with archery seasons in the late summer and stretching until the final rifle season in November, big-game hunting produces a huge influx of visitors, particularly for the downvalley communities of Eagle and Gypsum. So it seems only natural that a competition aimed at making sure archery hunters are trained and fit for the season ahead would find its way to this valley. This weekend, that’s exactly what’s happening when Train to Hunt comes to Eagle.

Train to Hunt is the creation of athletic trainer Kenton Clairmont and is headquartered in Edwall, Washington. About five years ago, Clairmont was training athletes for their various disciplines when he had what he refers to as his “lightbulb moment.”

“I thought, ‘You know what, no one is out there training the hunting athlete,’” he said.

He followed that thread of thought and realized that hunters needed a competitive motivation for training through the winter and spring, when their fall seasons seem very far off. He then created his first Train to Hunt competition.

“It has grown from one event that had 30 people in it to 13 events with about 1,000 participants,” Clairmont said.

High country venue

This is not Train to Hunt’s first year in Colorado, but its previous Denver-area venue was not available this summer. When Clairmont cast out inquiries about possible locales, a fellow who has hosted archery events in Eagle recommended the community. Clairmont researched Eagle and liked what he saw.

“There are so many miles of rough trails and rugged terrain,” he said. Additionally, he noted that the town’s BMX track is a great location for the course challenge event.

“Eagle is a really good spot for people to come as spectators for the event,” Clairmont said. “I would encourage locals to come out and see what Train to Hunt is all about.”

Organizers describe the two-day archery and fitness competition as a way “to extend wellness and longevity, as well as improve performance for hunters. The workouts are a launching pad for serious outdoor enthusiasts who want to learn the best way to be fit for their sport.”

The Train to Hunt challenge series tests competitors’ readiness in three separate events and will be contested at venues along the Haymaker Trail in Eagle on Saturday and Sunday

Hunters’ 3-D Course

This part of the event is designed to test shooting ability in a variety of hunting situations. It is not a timed event, and it carries a maximum of 100 points.

When they arrive, competitors are assigned a specific target and divided into groups of three to four individuals. While they are allowed to use any form of release and any stabilizer length, participants must use the same setup for all three completion events.

Competitors will shoot at 20 targets ranging from three yards to 60 yards. Range finders cannot be used on the course and the target ranges will not be identified. During the competition, there will be three timed shots where judges will be stationed.

Meat Pack

This event is designed to test ability to move over changing terrain while carrying a weighed pack. It is a timed event.

Competitors will face a one- to two-mile course and be placed in groups of four to 10 people. Heats will be determined based on scores from the 3-D shooting results.

Each competitor must pack a bow, stabilizer, release and three arrows, along with the assigned weight, through the course. The course will be well marked with arrows and lined with judges to assist with drink stations.

The top finisher in each division will be awarded 100 points. The second best time will start at 99 points, and then 1 point will be subtracted for every block behind the first-place finisher. The scoring system is designed to award people for finishing well in front of the people or teams behind them.

Challenge Course

Competitors must use the same bow, release, stabilizer and sight used in the 3-D course. A one- to two-mile courses will be set up and groups of three to four teams/individuals will be assigned. Heats will be determined from the results of the Meat Pack event.

During the Challenge Course, all men pack a 20-pound sandbag. All women will pack a 10-pound sandbag. Archery competitors must carry six arrows in a quiver or in a pack. Carrying arrows by hand is not allowed.

Competitors will start the race with a physical challenge, followed by a run to the first target. They will shoot at target No. 1 and immediately proceed to the next physical challenge. The challenge, run and shoot pattern will continue throughout the race. There will be a total of six physical challenges and six targets spread throughout the course.

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