The 5 Peaks Trail Running Series is known to get newbies hooked into trail running. I can tell you now that it is true. I signed up for the Mt. Seymour race a few months ago, I heard it was quite technical and fun. Everything they said is true, folks!
Cuski and I signed up for the Sport course, the shorter route at only 6km. The price was reasonable and we got a coupon code for $5 off. It was easy and quick to register online and the update emails they sent out were detailed and awesome… Especially for the Enduro racers whose course was still up in the air due to snow. Once they’ve flagged that course, they sent an email blitz to let us all know. Packages could’ve been picked up on Friday night at Distance Run Wear in North Van or at the mountain on race day. We decided to just go early to pick them up in the morning and were lucky to find no lineup. We got our bib, safety pins and our souvenir 5 Peaks trucker hat (which I was so grateful for that day).
6 km of hilly, rocky, tree-rooty, and in that day’s case, muddy goodness. You can check out the map here as I don’t really know how else to describe it. It can be challenging for an absolute newbie but it’s doable. It was fun to run across logs, tree stumps, mud pits, and bridges. Trail shoes were a definite must and perhaps some taller socks if you want to be more protected.
How Did I Do?
I was excited and nervous for my first trail race. We headed up to Mount Seymour and when we arrived it was 5 degrees, raining, and foggy. I thought I was gonna have a panic attack. I really really didn’t want to get lost in the woods. But I sucked it up and off we went. I ran with a friend from November Project, Steve, who waited for me and cheered me on throughout the race (thank you!!). I was freezing for the first few hundred meters but as soon as we got to the trails, I completely warmed up. The first part was a descent and this was the first time I ran down a technical trail. I had to stop a few times to let people pass but I think I was able to manage myself no problem. I was more cautious than fearless. I did have a great time despite the challenging terrain. I thought that I wasn’t gonna be able to climb over this rock but someone behind me gave me a tip and encouraged me to move forward. I love how supportive the community is, even when it’s a competition. When we got to Goldie Lake, we knew it was the home stretch so we took photos. What a great backdrop. The last challenge was running up a ski hill back to the parking lot. We decided to walk it and then sprint to the finish. Finishing felt amazing!
I was soaked and muddy but I didn’t care. Running through the woods was, in a way, meditative. I only focused on what was right in front of me and I was able to enjoy the scenery (despite the rain and fog). I felt really hardcore lol! I see photos of trail runners all the time and I felt like I was one of them (even though I sucked haha). Either way, I caught the bug and we signed up for the Cypress race in July. Cuski did AMAZING and finished 42nd overall with a time of 46:08. I finished at 1:08:16 which is ok I guess 😛 I’ll take it. I’ll see you at the next race!
Official race photos by Rob Shaer Photography