Well, the Canadian Death Race once again, proved to be one of the most difficult things I have ever done. The 125km Canadian adventure race through the foothills of Grande Cache, Alberta is considered one of the toughest adventure races in the world, here is the full course description of all five legs.
After running the Leg 4 last year in 4:20min, making the grueling 6500ft climb to top of Mount Hamel followed by the 30km of decent which was just a brutal as the climb. This year I tackled Leg 2, climbing the two summits of Mount Flood and Grande. The weather was definitely not on our side this year, having poured the days leading to the race, plus scattered showers throughout the entire day, the course was muddy and sticky.
With both climbs combined, the total elevation gain of Leg 2 is 6000 feet. Considered to equal in difficulty to Leg 4, I found Leg 2 to be much more technical. The descents were sharp and at points, almost completely vertical, leaving only the option to scramble down the muddy surface avoiding the scattered rocks, clinging to trees to slow your fall. Slugfest, one of downward sections is given the name for good reason, the entire descent feels like you are being pounded over and over, testing your will and strength. Luckily I escaped without injury, but several people were not so lucky, receiving dislocated shoulders and blown ankles. The grueling 3hours 50minutes to complete Leg 2 and the feeling coming into transition point and seeing your teammates, its an amazing feeling I will cherish forever.
Being one of the toughest things I’ve done, my heart goes out to all the soloist who battled the 125km alone. Our relay team finished in 15hours and 10minutes, the first place soloist finished 2 minutes before our relay team did, amazing to think that a single person covered as much ground as five people did, crazy.
Our return to Grande Cache this year also carried special meaning, after the tragic loss of our teammate, this year Jim carried memorial to top of Mount Hamel. I’m sure all my teammates would agree that every step of the race Bruce was right there running beside us.
A special thanks to my teammates Jean Torrens (Leg 1), Heather Rempel (Leg 3), Jim Newton (Leg 4) and Danny Anderson (Leg 5) for being such amazing runners and friends, it was your strength that helped carried me through Leg 2, I’m proud to be part of Team Fubar.