- I somehow managed to get us registered before it sold out. Several times we've decided to do this race only to find it's sold out. (One year I volunteered instead, which was its own kind of fun.)
- It was going to be my third weekend in a row running a Half Marathon. I hadn't done anything that aggressive since February of 2014.
- These trails are some of the best around. And since this was an out-and-back course, I'd get to see lots of friends - even the faster ones - during the race.
Horseshoe Lake is up on Skyline Road in the middle of nowhere (right Ynot, not your real name?) with no cell service.
It also had no heat.
|I thought Canadians would do better in the cold.|
But the cold was mostly temporary - once we started on the trails, we warmed up pretty fast. We started with a sprint through a parking lot, allowing us to sort ourselves a bit by speed, then turned on to some fun single-track. It was a bit of a conga line for a while, but it went fine.
|Conga lining up the switchbacks was kind of fun.|
After a bit, we ran along the edge of the woods on a wider trail, and the conga lines were no more.
|Wow - this trail was so much fun!|
|"Hi there Eiram! Not your real name!"|
|"Hi there Drannyl! Not your real name!"|
|Pick a color. Any color.|
|"Hi brave Nelle, not your real name!"|
|"Hi Mrs Coastal, not your real name!"|
|Photo by Mrs Coastal. Dorky look by me.|
|Photo by Mrs Coastal. Happy smile by Mrs Notthat.|
|Mrs Notthat and Not a Canadian came out a bit to see if I was still alive. That poor guy in the middle was just out for some peace and quiet. This was not a quiet time.|
|Not a Canadian: "Do NOT stop and play with these! Keep running!"|
A funny thing about this race - there is an aid station about 50 feet from the finish. It's for the long distance people who turn around and head back out to do the course again. They made sure I didn't stop, tempting as it was.
|The medal, shirt, bib, and anguished over rubber band.|
This course is a blast - if you are a faster runner and don't like conga lines, start nearer the front, or if you are like me, be sure to start nearer the back so you don't end up holding up the conga line. The fact that there even is a conga line means you're on single-track trails, which is always a great thing.
This felt a lot harder than a Half with 1800' of climbing should feel, but the variety of trails, views, and high fives on the out-and-back made it go by pretty quickly. A huge thanks to the volunteers and Coastal for putting on such a fun event - I'm so glad we finally got to run this thing!
That's it - move along…
PS: You can see more of my pictures here.