The race, which has become a tradition for both local athletes and those from further afield, includes a 6-mile bike leg through the village of Franconia, up Butter Hill, and through the White Mountain National Forest to Echo Lake; a half-mile swim across the lake; and a 2.5-mile climb to the summit of Cannon Mountain. The total vertical gain from the starting gun to the finish line is a whopping 3,320 feet. Despite the challenging terrain, many families and weekend warriors – along with top notch athletes – compete year after year in the event. This year’s race saw a record number of youth teams participating. Proceeds benefit the Lafayette Recreation Department, which comprises the communities of Franconia, Easton, and Sugar Hill, as well as the Franconia Life Squad. Since its inception, the Top Notch Triathlon has raised over $125,000, which has been used to support an array of projects, from building the gazebo and the new pavilion at the Dow Park to purchasing soccer goals and repaving the multi-use skating rink.