I had circled this half-marathon race as an option but could never find any publicity about it. But at a Wednesday Worship service, I ended up talking with one of the race coordinators. Turned out they had changed this into a “Recession Race.”
$10 entry fee, no t-shirts, no prizes, no corporate sponsors.
Ended up being abut 100 men and women meeting out on a rain soaked trail…and it was awesome.
At the 3/4 mile mark there was a rain swollen creek, and you had choice–walk across the swinging bridge or run through the 2 1/2 foot deep creek. I chose the creek.
Around mile 2.5, my right toe located a hidden tree stump and I took my one and only fall…okay, okay, it as a little root.
From mile 3 through 8, we were on a single-track mountain biking trails, twisting and turning, rising and falling. What is amazing about trail running is that I figured I was hauling and setting a PR pace…my watch later reflected that I was nearly a full minute off my road race pace. I think the turns and the twists give you an illusion of speed, as you have to mentally slow down as not to trip over hidden tree stumps (see mile 2.5).
Mile 9 was mile 4 for the 8k race, and by the time we reached it the 8kers had turned this into a 100 yards of pure, shoe sucking mud. Twice I nearly pulled out of my shoes the mud was so thick.
And the final stretch brought us around a nice scenic lake, which gave you the false impression that it would be flat and an easy finish. Nope. Around mile 11, I nearly puked and was holding onto a tree. But I finished the race…
Updated: Turns out I finished 21st, and missed placing 3rd in my age group by 2 minutes and 20 seconds. of course there were only 4 in my age group…but it all depends on how you look at it.