Authors Uncovered: “The Trail Runner’s Companion,” Sarah Lavender Smith, Library, 7/9

Authors Uncovered: “The Trail Runner’s Companion,” Sarah Lavender Smith, Library, 7/9

Sarah Lavender Smith is a seasoned competitive trail runner, coach, and contributor to Trail Runner magazine. She also co-hosts and blogs on A mother of two teens, Sarah has finished more than 70 marathons and ultramarathons. For information about Sarah’s appearances and links to media coverage, please visit

Sarah Lavender Smith is scheduled to speak at the Telluride Library on Sunday, July 9, 6 p.m., part of the Authors Uncovered series. The event co-hosted by the Library and Between the Covers Bookstore. The subject is her latest book, “The Trail Runner’s Companion: A Step-by-Step Guide to Trail Running and Racing, from 5Ks to Ultras.” She will also discuss her family’s role in the San Juans in the realms of recreation and mountaineering and more. Sarah, who took up running in her mid-20s, has guest-coached with Jill Burchmore’s runner’s group and has been a pacer for participants in the Hardrock 100. Sarah’s book is available now at Between the Covers Bookstore.

Sarah Lavender Smith in Deep Creek Half Marathon.

Liza Howard’s review: Liza is a highly respected ultrarunner and coach, and she writes: “Sarah’s book will remind you how fun it is to delve deeply into something. It’ll also remind you how satisfying it is to read something that has been put together thoughtfully and is well written. The book has all the information someone new to trail running might need to run trails safely and successfully. … Sarah’s deftness at weaving stories and examples throughout the book really makes it an engaging read for longtime runners too. Its layout is superb, and it’s easy for runners to find specific information. The scope of the book is so broad, there really is something for everyone.”

Please scroll down to listen to Sarah’s podcast.

Sarah Lavender Smith: runner, author, blogger,mom.

On July 9, 2017 Sarah Lavender Smith, a competitive trail runner, coach, and author will be speaking about her new book, “The Trail Runner’s Companion: A Step-by-Step Guide to Trail Running and Racing, from 5Ks to Ultras.”

Does the name sound familiar? It should: the Lavender family has been in the Telluride region for over a century. When I stopped here overnight and forever in 1985, the first book I read with a Telluride connection was Sarah’s grandfather David S. Lavender’s “One Man’s West,” a personal memoir about hardrock mining (one image that remains in my mind over 30 years later is that of shivering into canvas pants still wet and cold from yesterday’s stint in the dark underground) and ranching in San Miguel County. Sarah Lavender Smith’s father, David G. Lavender, in academia in California, had summers off, so the family spent the season here in Telluride. Since the mid-2000s, brother David W. Lavender and his wife Karen have worked at Telluride High School.

Now living in San Francisco, Lavender Smith continues the adventure of summers in Telluride. From a post in her blog,

“This annual pilgrimage does something to my psyche. Keeps me younger, makes me tougher. Reminds me what I’m made of and where I came from.

“Because I was a wild child, thanks to Telluride.”

In 2015, Sarah and her husband Morgan bought property up on Deep Creek Mesa, beyond the Telluride airport, near the log cabin her father built in the early ’70s. An Airstream serves as home until the house gets built. The important part is, like her parents before her, she comes “home” to Telluride at least part of the year.

Sarah’s great uncle, Dwight Lavender, on the left with two other members of the San Juan Mountaineers circa 1930


Sarah Lavender Smith’s grandparents, Brookie and David S. Lavender, outside of Camp Bird Mine in the early 1930s

The book talk on July 9 should be of interest to anyone who enjoys being in the high country. Or wants to continue being active in the outdoors in the years past her/his jock prime. Or has dreams of running (and finishing) an “ultra” run, such as the Hardrock 100 or the Western States 100. In addition, much of the book is specifically pertinent to the Telluride region. Hey, Telluride, I’m pointing at you! As for me, count me in.

Images of Sarah running, courtesy, Howie Stern.


As Sarah puts it: “I never want to go soft and lose touch with my Telluride side.”

For more about Sarah Lavender Smith, listen to her podcast:

No Comments

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.