Monday, April 14, 2014

Off Road Rage Adventure Race

A month ago, I talked Oma into signing up for the Off Road Rage Adventure Race.  The race was advertised as 15 miles of biking, 5 miles of running/trekking, and 3 miles of canoeing and should take between 4-6 hours.  This weekend was finally race day and we showed up with our bikes and gear about an hour before race time to check in and get our surprise race maps.  We checked out the route and were able to locate where we thought most of the checkpoints were going to be.  At 8 a.m. we took off running towards a checkpoint, only to realize that the only way to get there was to cut across a muddy field and trek down into a ravine to find the checkpoint hidden on the backside of a fallen log.  And that was only the first checkpoint.  We soon found out that part of the "adventure" was to FIND the checkpoints -- they weren't out in plain sight and most of them weren't even on the beaten path!  It took us 45 minutes to hammer out the first three checkpoints on foot and then we got on our bikes and rode 7 miles into town -- finding a couple of checkpoints on the way.  Then we were back on foot, heading  far north onto the trails at Lakewood park. We had to find checkpoints in 10 foot tall bamboo grass and even crossed a river on a fallen log (and the checkpoint was hanging in the middle of the river!).  But we kept going.  Then we had 3 miles of paddling on the Smoky Hill River.  And when that was done?  Another 5 miles on the bike finding more points.  So as we were seeking out yet another checkpoint, another racer mentioned that we weren't going to make the cutoff time.  The what??  Apparently you had to be at the finish line by a certain time -- we had no idea.  We were 5 miles from the finish and had about 20 minutes to make it.  Unfortunately, that 5 mile ride was completely INTO 20-40 mph south wind.  It was exhausting.  The last 5 miles took us 80 minutes.  80 grueling minutes.  But we made it to the finish line.  No, we didn't finish by the cutoff time.  Actually, we were an hour late, but I could not have been more proud of our team for FINISHING the race.  My mom will be 60 this year, and she is a super bad ass to be able to do this at all.  And, as a big-girl, I'm proud of being able to push my body to do something requiring this much physical stamina.  Our team name was also our motto: "Slow and Steady".  Overall, we raced for 7 hours and traveled over 30 miles on foot, canoe, and bike.  I am proud of our accomplishment and hope that the race is close enough for us to try it again next year!
Pre-race.  Didn't know what we were getting into.

Mid-race -- slowing down, but still going.

Paddling pair.

Go Oma Go!

Finishing together!

Team Slow & Steady finish the race.