Monday, March 9, 2009

Eco Lonestar race

Last weekend John, Dave, and I did the Terra Firma Eco Lonestar race. This year the race venue was moved to the Lake Conroe/Stubblefield area. I like the area for the nav challenges, not so much for the prickly vines (there's a reason we don't do the Stubblefield O-meet anymore).

Shaun Bain and Bob Talamini designed the course, and they made it fun and interesting. All legs required navigation (yay!), no more "follow the ribbons" trail running or biking. We appreciate that.

We got to run on the Texas Lonestar Hiking Trail again - seems like a really nice trail, maybe we'll explore it more someday.

The paddle was really fun - figuring out the channels and the topography to plan our route, gliding around and sometimes over all these dead tree trunks standing in the middle of the lake, even the strong wind wasn't overly difficult. A special test of a "blind orienteering challenge" was right up our alley.

We then had the "wonderful" opportunity to bike on the dirtbike trails that criss-crossed the forest. The trail maps worked well. My ability to bike in the sand, not so much. I tried to figure it out, with a bit of coaching. Sometimes it felt like I actually knew what I was doing (I think Dirt Derby may have helped a bit), then I'd hit a deep sand pile and that was that. Once my Energy Output to Speed ratio went over a certain limit, it was off the bike for me!

Thankfully we weren't required to stay on any particular trails, just find the CP's, so a bit of dirt road riding and powerline riding made the second half of the bike section easier.

One last section - trekking through vines and crap to locate the final CP's. We didn't run this section cleanly, but luckily we had time to spare and still managed to finish the race in first place. Sweet!

Unfortunately, the only reason we could relax in the last section was because Leslie from Team MOAT fell off her bike and broke her collarbone. That SO sucks. Sorry Leslie!

Our team will get more of a race report out in the coming days, probably.
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