Sorry for the slow posting. I have been tired this week. Can’t figure out why (kidding).
I left off at the Orienteering course. Turned out this was my make-or-break spot, as it was for several others that day too. The course had 19 checkpoints and only 3 were along marked trails/roads/other obvious features. Everything else was totally cross-country, and every checkpoint seemed to be on top of a hill (still trying to figure out how they managed that). We thought it would take us 2 hours or less when we started – it took a little over 3 hours. Wes caught his second wind a few CP’s in, and I started heading downhill.
I had been nauseated all race, and it started getting worse. I was feeling hot, and weird, and very tired (go figure). Somehow we pushed through it, I don’t have any miracle story, but once again it was my old friend: not eating or drinking enough. No matter how hard I try. Wes was a total rockstar. I would sight him in as he ran ahead of me until we found each point. It was great team work, something the Wonder Pets would be proud of.
We were SO happy to get back on the bikes because the climbing was behind us now – a downhill and singletrack ride to CP’s 7 and 8 on the main course. The Mainline trail was a real treat – lots of hard fast singletrack between little cut canyons. We passed 3 teams and a solo dude there.
Then we were riding by the first few checkpoints and soon enough, we were at the Tyrolean Traverse. The 350-foot rope traverse goes over where an old railroad trestle once was. The guys said “Oh, you’re the first woman so far today” and I started to get a little excited, which helped with the fear factor. Wes was so kind as to go first, hanging upside down over a big old chasm and pulling on the rope to get across. Once I got out on the rope, it was far less scary than it looked. I got determined, and before we knew it we were back on the bikes. I was FLYING down to the finish, super amped and full of adrenaline. Wes was a little peeved at me, but we had a good strong finish and it was so great to see our support crew again!
in the image above, you can barely see someone going across the ropes – trust me, it was way scarier looking from on top!
We set up the GT tent and it was starting to get dark. I had brownies, but no takers, so we all indulged. We did chat with a few neat people, but the end of an adventure race is a slow, slow trickle with lots of very tired and dirty people who want beds & showers. We packed up after an hour and headed back to the cabin.
What a day! We had a great time together and I don’t think quitting ever crossed my mind (Wes said it did his, but he was awesome). We don’t have any more planned in the near future, although we have our eyes on a couple for a few years from now. The expense and difficulty of just getting ready for a race like this was far harder than completing the actual race!
We definitely could not have done with without our incredible support crew – Troy, Sonja, and Annie. I couldn’t have felt so well without my new climbing machine of a bike – the GT Marathon Pro. I wouldn’t be running, let alone racing, without the incredible physical therapy I received (this race was 7 weeks post-surgery). And I know I wouldn’t have finished at all if it hadn’t been for this guy:
Final Results: 9hours 55 minutes, 1st of 2 coed duo teams, 5th of 18 all duo teams (mostly 2-man teams), 1st woman finisher.