Alice Lake 5 Peaks Trail Race 2016

Alice Lake is part of the 5 Peaks Trail Race Series. It kicks of the season of 5 trail races that start in April and then end in August with a bonus race #6 in October just because the weather is still so nice in October and BC/Lower mainland area has so many amazing trails to race in why not add a 6th race into the mix.  For more details on the 5 Peaks Trail Race Series please make sure to check out their website, and here is quick side note for you. The 5 Peaks Series isn’t just here in Beautiful British Columbia you are able to find this series in a few provinces across Canada. Check them out and see if they are in an area near you!!

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5 Peaks BC: http://www.5peaks.com/britishcolumbia/

5 Peaks Series: http://www.5peaks.com/about-us/

 

Bib Pickup:

Bib pickup was pretty easy day of as the allotted time to pick up was from 7:00am to 8:45am.

A few days before the race, the race director sent out a very long email outlining the rules of the land per say. The email was very detailed and nothing was left out, parking instructions with those who had more than 2 people in their vehicles received the closest parking spots to those who had 1-2 people got directed to the further away parking lots and had to walk a bit further. It also provided a great reminder to leave early as not to be stressed out with the long drive and the limited parking spots.

Once parked we walked the scenic 1 KM around Alice Lake to the main area to pick up our bib. The start line/finish line was here plus all the sponsor and little shops around the start and finish line. As you waited for the race to start you could catch up and say hello to friends that you hadn’t seen in a while.

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Trail Race Choices:

A runner has two choices to run with the 5 Peaks Trail Race Series. You could choose the run the Sports course of 9km (Course was changed this year from 8.5km to 9km) or you could pick the Enduro Course which is 13km. This trail event is not just for the adults the family can take part in the trail series, also available are two options for the children. For the younger kids they have a free children challenge of 1km or if your children are older they are able to register for the Timed 3km Kids Race.

  • Sports & Enduro Course Early Bird special before April 1, 2016 $45 and after up until two days before event or sold out $55 (plus applicable taxes and a small processing fee).
  • Children’s 1km Challenge is free.
  • Timed 3km Kid’s Race is $15 for the early bird and regular fee is $20 (plus applicable taxes and a small processing fee).

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Event Schedule:

7:00 AM – Packet Pickup for all Events (No Race Day Registration) 8:15 AM – Start of the 3km Kids Timed Event 8:45 AM – Start of the Children’s Challenge (Free Kids Event) 8:45 AM – Packet Pickup Closes 9:00 AM – Start for Enduro Event 9:15 AM – Start for Sport Event 9:30 AM – Post race food & beverage available in race compound 11:30 AM – Awards Ceremony.

Let the Race being:

The start line was very well-organized for a runner to start the race. The race started off in small waves due to the width of the trails and the importance of the faster runners having the room to run the race with little to no interference from slower runners on the path in front of them. As this was my 2nd trail race run, and with little training on my part as this was pretty much a last-minute choice to at the beginning of the week to run this race before it sold out, I wanted to start closer to the back of the pack as not to be in any runners way on the path if I was running slowly.

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The course started out with us running down a slight hill towards Alice Lake and then up a path and into the forest we went, at the beginning I found it a tad harder running with trail runners on the road surface I don’t recall if it was just hard packed down sand or if it was paved (?). Either way, it was not the trail surface and it was a slight hill going up. Once you got to the top you were into the forest and the fun began. Looking back now I really don’t have that many memories of the course and the race in my mind as it all looked pretty much the same (I guess this is the reason so many unexperienced hikers get lost while out hiking). Lucky for us, the course was nicely marked with flagging and when there were lovely and very helpful volunteers along the course pointing you in the right direction.

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Final Thoughts:

My last thoughts about the trail race are that I have always enjoyed running in the trails and this was a very well-organized race and I would highly recommend it to anyone that would love to get started running/racing in the trails. The word racing shouldn’t be scary to you when you run in the trails during a race, at least for me I am very happy with last placement on the sheet as I am out and walking/running and enjoying the outdoors. So many amazing benefits of running in the trails, one really big one for me now is my IT Band and how unhappy it is when I am running out on the road, and the soreness I have afterwards now-a-days. But when I go out and run/walk/race in the trails I (knock on a wood tree) I am not experiencing the same sort of issues and my IT band has been happy!! I am hoping that I will get stronger as a road runner with the more runs I do in the trails. If you haven’t tried it, what is stopping you (?).

What you are thoughts with racing in the trails? Have you found that it has helped you become a stronger runner? And, lastly how do you add trail running into your normal road training sessions?

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XO… Jacki

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