For those who have never done trail races, they are amazing and make you walk away proud of yourself just for finishing every time. Any outdoor enthusiast would get addicted.
And now for the race. Sunridge, so cleverly disguised as a ski hill by winter, is in fact a treacherous and technical not-for-the-faint-of-heart trail race by summer. Just so you can fully appreciate some of the challenges, I've posted below some pics of the practice run from a week ago:
Last week, after a ton of rain, the river had overflowed, and trails were literally washed out. For todays' race, they re-routed some of the less passable trails without sacrificing the technicality of the race.
The race began in waves: I ended up in the last wave because I was doing one final potty break behind a bush.
The race had two options: 7.5K (one loop) or 15K (two loops). I did the 15K and actually found it easier on the second loop just knowing what was coming ahead. There were some 15K runners who bailed after the first loop but the challenges of the race combined with the good company - I ran with a friend - made the time fly.
The photo below is of a downhill portion that the picture doesn't do credit. It was almost straight down. My run buddy is a really fast downhill runner but one slip of the foot and ai-yi-yi...I told him that if he tumbled, let me know so I could at least tuck before he hit me :)
We took some time for photos - why not! In the photo of me, I had made John stop to take a pic of the parks and cityline but he decided to include me so I hammed it up.
I haven't been running much, mainly biking, so I was glad to run with a friend and take a slower pace than I'm used to. I enjoyed the scenery and even picked some wildflowers for my girls along the way. We finished in 2:02:00, pretty slow, but I think I'd run with him again just for the enjoyment.
Speaking of the girls, there was a 1K kids' race before our race. The girls ran strong and finished well, very proud of their accomplishment.
Both our spouses and some other friends cheered us on. The crowds were very supportive and vocal, a great group. The awards ceremony included a watermelon holding contest for free running shoes. Lots of fun. 5Peaks is really one of the greatest trail series and I'll be back for more. John and I will be running the September half-marathon trail race, and I'll probably do a couple more in between. Stay tuned :)
Read more: http://www.tribalrunning.net/p