|Epic shot of Gary crossing the low water bridge in Shenandoah River State Park.|
|Howard preparing for the biking descent from Edith Gap.|
A new event came to town last weekend – adventure racing. Our local folks at Appalachian Outdoors Adventures (AOA) were sponsors, and they fielded a four person team in the event. The sport mixes biking, trail running, trekking, and water sports with navigation skills, making for a very challenging adventure that the word “epic” perfectly communicates. As you can see from the pictures AOA’s Gary Drum shared with me here, it’s a very rewarding experience that brings out the best in the individual and team participants.
|The team at the finish...something like 3am, I'm told.|
|Another team shot, working out a plan.|
AOA’s sponsorship included providing maps for the navigation challenges, and the store served as the packet pickup location for the nearly 300 participants. Gary tells me there were 33 teams in the Epic event, and the AOA team completed the course in in 19 hours for 16th place overall – pretty good for only their second race.
|Waiting for the shuttle at the River checkpoint, since the canoe portion was cancelled.|
I asked Gary what his favorite memory of the event was, and he said the slog through deep water and mud on the state park’s Bluebell Trail was best. The most challenging part was the mountain bike course there in the park; this biking portion was in addition to a 40-mile extension that was added to the course to replace the canoeing when it was cancelled.
Gary says that AOA is looking forward to sponsorship activities for future races, and that yes, with all of the fun they had as a team in this race, they’ll likely do another when the time comes!
Here is a link to some addition photo highlights: http://www.daddiophoto.com/AdventureRacing/Rev3-Adventure-April-16-2011/16655105_2sRS49#1255610238_QBG8fjm
Here’s the homepage of the race organizer: http://www.rev3adventure.com/
Gary’s blog (often includes reviews of gear and adventures): http://runtechinthevalley.blogspot.com/
Howard’s blog (often includes reviews of events and other adventure activities): http://adventuresinthevalley.blogspot.com/