Sep 18, 2007

4th Dimension Adventure Racing Olympic Peninsula WA Sept 15/16 2007

So, last night I wrote this post about the rest in good detail and somehow due to either my technology incapabilities or whatever I lost it all and now I have lost motivation to re-type everything. So its going to be much shorter and less detailed than my first entry.

The weekend started on Friday for me. I had to take several buses down to the ferry terminal. I was lucky to run into a girl I had met recently so she kept me company on part of the trip. Anyways, I had lots of stuff and my bike. I arrived at the ferry terminal saw the PCL buses and the two drivers hanging out outside and decided to ask them about the bus service to victoria. They told me I could by my ticket on the ferry but when I mentioned my bike they shook there heads and told me there was no room....oh boy....then mentioned that a city bus could take me to victoria but I was on a time budget as I needed to meet Todd at the Coho ferry terminal in Victoria. By some random chance there happened to be a carriage free on one of the buses that the drivers totally thought was full of luggage so again luck was by my side and i managed to grab a seat on the bus. Could have been disastrous. I met Todd at the ferry and all was good until we figured out I didn't have a paddle. So we just hoped that someone would have an extra at the race....All went smoothly and we made it to the race meeting just in time. At the meeting we found out a couple of interesting things. First it was going to be a 28 hr race instead of 24hrs fine..except that would mean we would miss our reserved ferry back to the island....arg...we would deal with that later. Second, was we had to drive down and drop off our bikes that night that would take about 2 hrs (more if you drive like LINA) Todd set up camp and worked on the maps while I drove the bikes and dropped thenm off. We got to bed at 130am the night before our 28 hr race and had 3 hours of sleep. The alarm went off at 430am and we had to get ourselves ready in the dark and drive down to the race start. We were off at 630am. We should have paddled in a tandem kayak but due to other reasons we found ourselves in 2 singles...and we were fairly happy about our paddle considering our circumstance....the paddle took about 3,5 hours and off we went on our bikes.... on our bikes the first big frustrating situation we found ourselves in was the misplaced check point. We happen to take a different route than most or all teams that involved an easier road but a bikewack (bushwacking with a bike). We prob lost about 45 minutes and some spots going back and forth looking for the checkpoint and after chatting with a bunch of teams we were certain that it was misplaced. So we went on our way passed one or two teams and then found ourselves on the hike a bike (prob one of the longest hike a bikes I've been on thus far and the descend was a hike a bike as well. ) After check point 10 we were faced with another decision (to bushwack or take the long simple route but one that involved a huge climb on the bikes....) we took the road tired of bushwacking and walking with our bikes...we believe it was the right choice.. We arrived to check point 11 in 3rd place...surprised, we fueled up and kep on going. from there we had a lot more biking to go. Again at check point 12 we made a decision to take the longer but probably safer route to 13...a long slog of a climb...but by this point we were getting pretty immune to these climbs so they just didn't seem as long and hard as the first few....we biked through the night (my lights died on me so I had to deal with just my headlamp by the end which for me was sort of tough....) We hit the kayak portion at about midnight and had a wonderful smooth kayak to the beginning of the rogaine/run/trek section. Todd had planned out a sweet route for us in assumption that we would get all 22 controls. As it turns out this was not the case some controls were much tougher than others and involved some pretty intense bushwacking and steep descends and river crossings.... It rained pretty good on us throughout the night but being in the woods you are fairly sheltered from the worst of it...we had a little fight with devils club to get to one of the check points. Todd did an awesome job in navigating us throughout the area. The toughest part for us was the end but also in some ways the most rewarding. It was 9am we had 1 hour left and had to make some decisions...we weren't going to get all the controls we had planned so we decided to grab 2 more and head back on the road rather than try and bushwack our way back. Then it was 9 25am. Todd looks at me and says "lina we gotta run or we aren't going to make it." I take a deep breath, not too happy about this but pick up my feet and start running...we run and run and run and all I want to do is stop and crawl into the woods and sleep or at least walk. It took my all not to start walking....I was just exhausted overall...after 27.5 hours of racing the last thing i wanted to do was run 8km to the finish....but we pulled it off and that is what makes racing so amazing....we rolled in at 10:18am. 2 minutes from 3rd place. We lost 2 control points but still managed to pull off a 2nd place overall finish by one control. It felt great to accomplish that and looking back it was worth the pain and suffering especially that last little bit....

But that was not the end of our adventure we still had to pack up grab our bikes and find a way home....we had missed the ferry we originally booked. Todd was going to drive me to the ferry terminal i was going to walk onto the 515pm ferry and make my way home from there and he was going to sleep and catch the early one back to the island. We neglected to remember that we were exhausted and that driving anywhere would be a problema dn this was soon realized when we drove to pick up our bikes... we nearly drove off the road due to pure exhaustion. So we parked the car and fell asleep to wake up 2 hours later and realizing that i was not going to make the 515pm ferry. So in the end we drove home through seattle. Stopped in Bellingham for some great this point i think any kind of food would have been delicious but it really was good food. Saw my buddy Chris and kept going. I found myself in bed at 11:15pm and asleep at probably 11:16pm. Todd drove to the ferry and slept in his car so he could grab the first ferry to the island...what a trooper!!!! All in all an adventure of a weekend and a fabulous one at that!!!

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