Saturday, October 8, 2011

Currahee Challenge

Last weekend we made a trip to my bro's (Alex and T) in Georgia for a little running and a lot of visiting.  A had told us about a run in nearby Toccoa, GA at Currahee Mountain.  Mt. Currahee was used as a training ground for paratroopers in WWII and was the setting for the popular HBO series Band of Brothers. The peak stands at 1735 feet which makes for some pretty challenging climbs.  The paratroopers motto became "3 miles up, 3 miles down" and stands as the race motto today.

We arrived at the mountain early, checked in and fought the cold, upper-40s temperatures as we waited for the race to start.  A&T are the experts at this mountain as they've been running it on weekends and they warned us of steep inclines making up the third mile.

check out my ridiculous trail running shoes. briiight.

The race began with a quick out and back on the road (added to make the distance a full 10k) before starting UP the mountain.  The first two miles were pretty steep rolling hills with plenty of ups and downs.  As warned, mile three was suuuper intense and rounding each curve just gave sight to another crazy hill.  I often felt as though I were running in place and glances at my Garmin confirmed these feelings.


really up

almost there
I was beyond thrilled to make it to the peak.  The views up top were amazing!


Coming back down was awesome.  I felt like I was flying on the steep declines (which is rare feeling for me as I'm usually a "slow and steady" runner).  Unfortunately, those pretty rolling hills on the way up made for some challenging moments on my tired legs on the way back.  Crossing the finish line was a great feeling, especially because I was only 3 minutes behind my speedy husband!  The time for my 10K was 1:03 which placed me fourth in my age group and seventh female overall. 

A finishing- he never stopped to walk- ridiculous!

I absolutely loved my first experience with trail running.  The gorgeous scenes, relaxed atmosphere and new type of challenge all appealed to me.  I'm already finding new trail races to sign up for! 

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