Thanks again for a great race last weekend. I thought Bon Echo was great last year and was blown away by how beautiful Fort Coulonge was this year. Loads of fun too!
Alison Waddell, Team Treesome
by Wayne Leek (Team Lather. Rinse. Repeat.)
Esprit Rafting is a world class spot to watch a sunset.
The grass is a nice place to pitch a tent - except when you have to listen to them loading all the bikes on the bus. Note to self: next time, register earlier, book a real bed and hopefully get more than 2 hours of sleep.
Why do I always get car sick on bumpy school bus rides in the middle of the night?
A conversation you don't want to have on the bus: "We didn't bring a pencil, did we?" (Many thanks to the Soggy Bottom Boys for sharing their spare).
Amusing to see all these guys lined up heeding nature's call before the start ... just before the race starts and we all walk right through where they were peeing.
Truly one of my favourite things: the thrill of starting off on a night bushwhack. You're feeling good (save for the carsickness), adrenaline is pumping, and you charge off into the night. Of course, after a couple hours, the thrill wears off a little.
Heading to CP2 and got to top of a cliff of undetermined height. Threw a stick and waited a little longer than we wanted to for a splash.
Ju-jubes at CP3! Sweet!
Having lost a passport in the past, I totally understood the relief on Young Buck solo's face as we gave his back.
I keep racing by these beautiful waterfalls. Someday, I'll have to come back and admire them.
Love it when a plan works out: Geoff said CP5 was tricky, so we decided to loop back and do it in the light, which was the right call for us. Finding the trail up around the back was another bonus.
3 guys in a whitewater canoe: almost capsized off the start; got hung up on a log once; no keel made steering a little tricky and resulted in a lot of "lazy s's" down the river.
Changing into dry socks does a tired soul a world of good.
And on and up we ride. And up. And UP. There's no shame in getting off and walking, right?
Thanks again for putting together another terrific race. Esprit’s always an awesome place and the surrounding Ottawa valley is so dynamic for a race, especially heading up to that lookout, wow! - Adrian Makurat, Team KURA
The volunteers at the lookout were great - raised everyone's spirits after a tough climb.
What goes up, must go down. Yee ha.
"Old ATV trail". Like, from before they invented ATVs?
What the @#$%^ are those *&^%$#@ prickly things that keep grabbing me? I'll call them "Geoff bushes".
Who laid down all the trees?
Finally on the way down. And down. And up. And down some more.Why would the same road be gravel, then paved, then gravel again?
Holy Chute, Batman. Yet again, a beautiful spot that I am too tired and in too big a hurry to appreciate. And now I can't get the Pointer Sisters out of my head.
Even tucked into the draft on the rail trail, there's no power left in the legs and the pace is too much.
Finished. And showered. And even a little nap before supper. It's all good.
As I put all the wet stinky gear into the big black garbage bag, I dread the thought of having to take it out when I get home. Why can't I just throw out my gear and buy new stuff before every race?
Old guys over 40 just have to race smarter. 5th overall feel good when you look at the great (and might I add younger) teams ranked above you. And to whomever had the brainstorm to put the 3 solo guys together the night before and cost us 1st in the male division: thanks for nothing (Kidding. Congrats to Andrew, Alex & Joe).
Really enjoyed the course. A challenging trek, good paddle, and a monster ride. Our nav was dialed all race. The only way we go faster is being stronger (and younger), and getting lucky with a trail or two. We do like bushwhacking, but ALL bushwhack from CP1 to CP3 was a little much.
The 4 hour drive on dark, rainy highways may not have been the smartest choice of post-race activity, but the bed at the end of the drive was worth it.
Truly a Fall Classic. Congrats to all the racers (especially first-timers) who rose to the challenge. Well done, Geoff and crew. Hopefully see you all next season.
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