|Mr. Coastal: "How many have kissed a banana slug?"|
|This is seriously hard to explain. Suffice to say she's not from around here. (She also won the Marathon.)|
While Baby Coastal was thrilled I hadn't dared a longer distance, he tried to convince me to drop to the 5M (or even better, stay here and cut up fruit, but only with a plastic spoon).
Once we got started, it was a lot of fun on the trails. Granted, the "fun" involved a ridiculously long uphill climb, and for some, an attack by a group of irritated wasps. (We've probably done a dozen races out of this park and have never had wasp problems before, so this was a bit of a surprise.)
Eventually I made it to the top of that long hill and to the first aid station, where Drannyl (not his real name) asked what took me so long. (For the record, I wasn't in last place. But I wasn't missing it by much.)
|Mrs Notthat pausing for a picture. Then taking off like a bolt of lightening.|
|It's REALLY hard to miss the Half turnaround.|
After that out-and-back, you end up back at the aid station. I asked Drannyl if I had a chance of catching Mrs Notthat. I've never heard that guy laugh so hard before. (Also for the record, I really had no chance. But she turned out to beat me by only 16 minutes.)
|That's Mr. Coastal trying to decide whether it's safe to cross the finish chute in front of me. That was so cute! He could have crossed a dozen times before I finally made it that far.|
|A group of great runners swapping trail horror stories.|
|I believe Ynnep (not her real name) is having too much fun playing doctor.|
This was the last of the really cool moments of the day's race. I had found out about three weeks before this race that a coworker, whose office is close enough to mine that she has intimate knowledge of the words I use when my computer fails to play nice with me, was running the 50K in this race. Before that day, I had no idea she even knew what a trail race was. Even more bizarre, we actually ran the same race once and didn't know it (she is a proper runner and is MUCH faster than me).
And what made this special was that it was her first 50K. And she nailed it!
The race was a blast! The trails were amazing (as always) and the volunteers were stunning. And to top it off, Mr. Coastal spent a lot of quality time with a grill and there were a lot of tasty things to eat.
And that's about it. We have one more race out of this park this year, and I can't wait.
Although hopefully the wasps can't wait either and will have moved on by then.
That's it - move along…
PS: You can see a lot more pictures here.