Monday, May 3, 2010
Tough Mudder Bear Creek Event Report - Part Two - The Course
Remember when you had recess in elementary school and all the kids went to the playground and piled on the merry-go-round and the see-saws? Imagine as an adult you have a big-person's playground and 5,000 of your playmates all head out for recess to play. It was THAT fun. People were doing flips, dives, and cartwheels off the 8 ft-high plank into the pond, smiling from ear to ear as they stomped through the thigh-high mud pit, and encouraging each other up the really steep slope. There wasn't a bad mood for miles - just very happy people. Since it wasn't timed, there was aboslutely no pressure - no need to hurry from one obstacle to the next. Yes we ran where we could, but we spent a good bit of time walking up the hills which made it seem like it wasn't really 7 miles. There were only a handful of serious athletes in this bunch. Most were out to have a good time and boy were they ever. The obstacles were SOOO fun - two of them were simply climbing ski slopes. Two were crawling under a cargo net and wire in mud. One was a log carry (small logs) up a short piece of the ski slope. We crawled through a tunnel and the majority of the obstacles were at the ponds which is where it looked just like a playground. There were the planks and swim back to shore in 45-50 degree water (it felt good on a 90 degree day), the ropes over the water, the barrels you had to go underwater under, the walls to climb over, and the part that looked the most fun but we didn't get to do - the water slide. When we got there, about 500 other people or more were standing in front of us and someone said it was about 1/2 hour wait. Our team hesitated on what we wanted to do, stood there another 5 minutes, and chatted about what to do again. Rick mentioned the plastic was starting to tear and some people were getting caught on it as they flew down the slide. Finally, we opted out of the wait. Shortly after that they shut that obstacle down and we would not have gotten to do it if we would have continued to stand there. And the end was running between two rows of fire. This is the very first time I think I was not timed and it truly takes all pressure off and makes it totally fun. We were done in about 2 hours. It takes some getting used to the fact you aren't getting timed, but worth it when reality sets in. They had two trailers of Dogfish beer waiting at the finish line and gave us beer, a headband, fruit, energy bars, and bagels. It was awesome to say the least. Rick took tons of pics, but wasn't permitted to get too close to the obstacles so he didn't get many close-ups. There were a lot of spectators, and for safety reasons, security kept the spectators behind the line -- just like at a big sporting event! Ha. Here's the link to his many pics. They are worth a peek just to see the folks in costumes and how fun people were really having.