Last week some of west coast AL13 team packed up their running shoes, tents and a big heap of anticipation as we headed out to Grande Cache, Alberta, to compete in this years Death Race. For those of you who are unfamiliar with this grueling event here is a little back ground on the race:
Since the start of the millennium, elite racers have come to the Canadian Rockies to cheat Death in one of the world’s toughest adventure races. The 125 km course begins and ends on a 4200 foot plateau, passes over three mountain summits and includes over 17,000 feet of elevation change and a major river crossing at the spectacular Hell’s Gate canyon at the confluence of the Smoky and Sulphur Rivers. Extreme athletes, individually and in relays, push themselves to the limits of their endurance against the breathtaking background of the Canadian Rocky Mountains. Each year, well-trained and totally committed, they battle heat, cold, altitude and themselves. Finishing is the prize. And the bragging rights are priceless….
Our team was taking on the relay course. Each section gives its own set of challenges; river crossings, extreme elevation gains, muddy technical single track, never ending wet boulders, rocky drop-offs, running at night in the torrential rain, deep mud bogs, whipping winds, chaffing skin, blistered skin, burnt skin and some good old fashion long distances were all on the plate for us. It wasn’t pretty, it wasn’t easy, it wasn’t always fun but we got it done in a respectable time for a team of semi professional of the couch athletes. Above all we found a new passion for trail running and a desire to do it again next year with a more dedicated training schedule. This renewed sense of adventure, both as a team and individually, has been a real unexpected bonus to the whole adventure.
Maybe think about putting it on your plate for next year. Its killer!
After the race we traveled to Valmont B.C for some much need relaxing. Fishing, rafting, jet boating… times were had!