Vail’s Kloser ends one adventure, begins another
Vail, CO Colorado
VAIL – Vail’s Mike Kloser crossed the finish line of his adventure racing career Thursday.
His team came in second at the World Championships in Spain, falling short of Kloser’s personal goal of retiring with a fifth world title.
“Ultimately, we’re disappointed in second place but we’re really happy with the effort everybody put in,” Kloser said.
Kloser’s Team Blackwater completed the race in just under 4 1/2 days, finishing 1 hour and 28 minutes behind the winning team.
Perhaps the most difficult part of the 500-mile race – which required orienteering, running, trekking, mountain biking, kayaking, inline skating and mountaineering – was staying awake through it all.
“We only slept about five hours over the course of 4 1/2 days,” Kloser said shortly after the race. “I’m extremely tired now and I’m looking forward to sleep.”
His four-person team also included Chris Forne, Nathan Fa’avae and Monique Merrill.
The race marked the end of Kloser’s 13-year adventure racing career. At 50, he has won three Eco Challenges, four Primal Quests and four world championships – and now he’s ready to turn his attention to other things.
“I’m really looking forward to spending more quality time with my family,” he said.
Kloser is also using his knowledge of racing to develop a line of adventure gear.
Although his career may be drawing to a close, his children’s may be just beginning. His daughter, Heidi, 18, made the U.S. Freestyle Moguls Team last spring, and his son, Christian, 16, is involved in endurance sports.
Wife Emily Kloser will be relieved to see her husband hang up adventure racing. She had worried at one point during the race when the GPS Mike Kloser was carrying froze up.
“This cannot be healthy for a body to go nonstop for that many days,” she said.
Although she’s ready for it to come to an end, Emily Kloser is proud of her husband’s 30-year career.
Mike Kloser first skied on the Pro Mogul Tour then won a cross country mountain biking world title in Switzerland. He was honored in the Mountain Bike Hall of Fame and is considered a pioneer in the sport.
“There’s no way he can look back when he’s old and in a rocker that he didn’t have a wonderful career,” Emily Kloser said.
Staff Writer Sarah Mausolf can be reached at 970-748-2928 or firstname.lastname@example.org.