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Adventure Racing Tidbits January 16, 2009

Posted by Dave Of Prescott in Adventure Racing, Adventure Recreation, extreme sports, Just Stuff.
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Here is a quick overview of the History of Adventure Racing, that I found just tag surfing this today.  While it only really covers the big expedition events, it is a decent primmer.

Wikipedia has a much more extensive article about AR, and it even has a link to a race that I am the director of, the Gilmore Adventure Race.  Speaking of Wiki, we all know not to trust it as a reliable source right?  That is because anyone can go onto it and change info at any time…so reading from it is more like saying, “Someon told me……”  Lots of good info in Wiki, just use other sources to verify it!

Also found this article called Why I love Adventure Racing, and You Should Too! This is a re-publication of an article that world class adventure racer and all around AR stud Ian Adamson wrote a while back.

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We Made it Back Alive October 20, 2008

Posted by Dave Of Prescott in Adventure Racing, Adventure Recreation, Events.
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This is just a quick post to say that Team GO-AR successfully completed the Sand Storm III Adventure Race held just outside of Tucson last weekend.  Tired and sore, but alive!

A full race report is in the works. The full race report is HERE

Gilmore AR was a Sweet Success! September 23, 2008

Posted by Dave Of Prescott in Adventure Racing, Adventure Recreation, Mountain Biking, orienteering.
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I just finished putting on the 7th Annual Gilmore Adventure Race this last weekend, and boy oh boy was it awesome! The weather was great and the scenery was stupendous!

We had over 185 racers compete in two different length courses.

The short course was 3 miles of trekking, followed by 10 miles of mountain biking (some teams turned this into 12 or 13), and there were 2 mystery events thrown into the mix too.  Then after that they were given a map with 13 orienteering points marked on it and told to find as many as they could before their 2:00pm cut off.  So total distance for short coursers was between 13 and 18 miles!

The long course was 4.5 miles of trekking, followed by 22 miles of mountain biking (1mile of which was a tough hike-a-bike down a narrow rocky canyon), and they also had the 2 mystery events.  Then they were given a the nav map with 13 orienteering points marked on it and told to find as many as they could before their 3:00pm cut off.  So total distance for short coursers was between 27 and 32 miles!

At the beginning of this post I said “I” just finished putting on the race……well, I was the race director, but there is NO WAY that the event could have gone off without the unbelievable efforts of our awesome volunteers!  They are really the ones that put on the race, I just put it and them together.  Thank you guys!

The vibe at this year’s race was really great.  Many racers brought their families and friends to cheer them on, so we had lots of people and lots of fun.  I didn’t expect so many people however, and we ran out of food and snacks.

Here are just a few photos that will be available to view on the GAR web site as soon as I get around to putting them up there!

Finally got my bike back April 5, 2008

Posted by Dave Of Prescott in Adventure Racing, Adventure Recreation, Mountain Biking.
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Monday I dropped my bike off at the lbs, and told them how bummed out I was with the troubles I had with it at the Desert Rage Adventure Race.  I told them I was going to be busy all week and that I wanted it fixed more than I wanted it back in a hurry. Remember it gave me fits at the race, and  Team Gilmore Adventure Race (that’s us), didn’t have time to get all the nave points.

Well, I went and got it this afternoon, and can’t wait to get out and see if it’s 100% again. A full week off is killing me.

Sand Storm Race Report March 12, 2008

Posted by Dave Of Prescott in Adventure Racing.
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The final climb to the finishTeam Gilmore AR was made up of Kent Keegan, Jonea Mounsey, and me Dave Sewell. Not sure, but I think we might have been the 3 oldest racers that day. We started out with an uphill run of about 600 yards to pickup our passport, then out into the hills to pick up 4 other CPs in any order. We jogged down part of the Arizona trail past Kentucky Camp’s old adobe buildings and out into Kentucky Gulch. There was a point high up on a ridge, and we chose to go up the ridge-line to it. Once we had the point, we bailed straight off into the gulch and then followed it about a half mile to the next point. By now, my knees couldn’t run anymore, so we fast hiked. From that point we went over the shoulder of a hill into a narrow gully that we followed uphill to the 3rd point. We climbed out onto a road and followed it for a few minutes then descended into yet another draw to get the 4th and final point. From there it was half a mile up the road to the TA.

We transitioned to bikes, remembering to pack our trail shoes for the trek we had been told would be somewhere on the bike section. We headed out down the same section of Arizona trail that we ran down before. No sooner had we turned up a rocky forest road than my back tire felt mushy. It was going flat. We stopped and began our best pit crew impression and got it changed is just a few minutes. Then back on the bikes and up into the hills. The we arrived at the next CP at the same time as 3 other teams, it was on an old piece of equipment in a field by the road. The other teams out-climbed us to the next checkpoint, but the blew right by it and we got it before they figured it out and came back to get it. Shortly after that, there was a big nasty rocky section that we had to hike-a-bike. At the top, we stopped to make a route choice decision and while we were doing that 2 teams went by us on up the forest road. 2 other teams were also looking at their maps and we all decided to to take a single track down to some hairy-steep switchbacks that went down into Gardner Canyon. We got onto Gardner Canyon Road and followed it up to the third biking checkpoint which was also our bike drop. While we were changing our shoes, the teams that had chosen to continue on the forest road arrived.

The first trekking point was back down the road we had just ridden up about a mile then up a canyon to the mouth of a cave. Only one team member was required to go into the cave to punch the passport, but all three of us wanted to see the cave! So we probably gave up about 5 minutes so we could enjoy the experience. After that, the next point was back on the other side of the bike drop at the very peak of a mountain. We decided to to go to the drop and get rid of our helmets (they were required in the cave). From the bike drop it was about a mile and a half of up hill, and more up hill on a seemingly never ending rocky forest road. We encountered teams coming back down as we were going up, and vice versa. One the way up, Kent said he saw something in the road ahead of us, and then it was gone. A minute later he saw it again (hallucinations?), nope he did see something, it was a grey fox trotting a few yards ahead of us up the road. It had a huge bottle brush tail. We got several good looks at it until it left the roadway on a bend and disappeared into the tall dry grass. Coming down was hard work, it was steep, and hard on the knees and feet.

We got back on our bikes and had to ride another 3 miles up Gardner Canyon Rd. At the 4th bike CP we had to take a hike-a-bike trail up a creek-bed then switchback up through a fairly recent burn area to a junction with another forest road on the spine of ridge. We road down the forest road and crossed the creek several times, getting another CP along the creek. Then we followed the road back around the mountain to the Gardner Canyon Rd again. Here we followed it back down to the base of the same hairy-steep switchbacks we had descended earlier in the day. Now, we pushed our bikes up them. We got to ride about 5 miles of the Arizona Trail on our way back to the TA, and it wound through some beautiful country. The final hill up to the finish was enough to put me over the top, as my legs had turned to silly putty. We finished in 6 hours and 12 minutes though, not bad for a team whose combined age is 136 years!

Adventure Racing is Hard to Beat March 10, 2008

Posted by Dave Of Prescott in Adventure Racing.
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Our team just raced on the long course of the Sand Storm II Adventure Race in southern Arizona, and boy oh boy was it cool!

This race was put on by a company called Monsoon Adventures, 2 guys that have raced in the Gilmore Adventure Race the last few years under the name of Team Chupacabra. They did a super job of organizing and hosting this race. It was very challenging (for our team anyway), and took us through some very scenic country.

When most people think of Arizona, especially southern Arizona, they think of flat, hot desert. Well this was anything but that. We started at a place called Kentucky Camp at an elevation of about 5200′. The terrain there is rolling hills leading up to steep mountains that still held snow on the NE face. At one point in the race we were up as high as 6000′.

Once I get my photos sorted out, I will post a complete race report, but until then, I will just say that our team comprised of 2 forty-five yr olds and a forty-six year old were very proud of our finish.

Heading Down to the Sand Storm AR March 5, 2008

Posted by Dave Of Prescott in Adventure Racing.
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This weekend my two team mates and I will be driving the 265 miles down to Kentucky Camp to compete in the Sand Storm II Adventure Race.

We have done very well the last 12 months in the co-ed division on the short courses of the Desert Rage Series, so we are going to move up and try our luck on the long course this time.  They promise us 30+ miles to be comprised of mountain biking and overland trekking with some surprises thrown in to boot.  We (or should I say “I”) don’t run very well, so on the trekking legs we have to depend on good navigation and smart route choice.  We usually do fairly well on the mtb legs.

Our female team mate broke her foot not long ago, but swears she is ready to go.  I am sure she is because she is one tough cookie.  Our other male is strong on the bike and on the treks, but has had some problem keeping fueled well enough on longer outings, but he too swears he is ready to go.  After writing about my two team mates, it occurs to me that I am definitely the weakest link on our team.  The must just keep me around out of pity.

Good Lord willing and the creeks don’t rise, I will live to tell you all about how it went.

Phoenix Urban Adventure Race March 1, 2008

Posted by Dave Of Prescott in Adventure Racing.
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Tracie and I just got back from a fun day as volunteers at the Phoenix Urban Adventure Race that is put on annually by Rick Eastman of Sierra Adventure Sports.  I race in AR several times a year, and am the Race Director of the Gilmore Adventure Race in Prescott every September, but I don’t find the time to volunteer very often.  We had a great time out there.  We manned two different CP’s, one one the mountain biking section, and another on the scooter or skate section (remember it is urban!).  There were several first-timers, and they all did very well!