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Atomic AR rewview

17
May

Atomic AR rewview

This was a 24 hour Adventure race

trekking, canoeing, mountain biking
David and Laura B. ran with me in it this year.

in short we had to bail out due to David hurting his knees and feet around midnight which was 17 hours into the race.  But at that point we were in 13th place.

We started with a few issues the night before in the hotel room.  While preping our gear, Laura found a hole in her water bladder.  Fortunately I had brought my tiny one so she swapped out.  I then dropped my dinner on the floor (boo) so i was a little hungry that night.  We had some flat-ish tires that we thought might hold.  I also left my lamp harness at home … DOH!  but I had a back up… YES!

We started the race with a small run to spread the crowd out then ran from the bottom to the top of Amicalola falls.  We followed the pack up this falls.  The biking this year went north into the state park.  We mostly followed Forest Service roads.  The neat aspect of this part of the race was that we kept passing folks.  We made one nav error (my fault) which cost us 30 min but had we communicated better (me listened) we could’ve hit the point on the way out.  Anyhow…

We were giving a hard cutoff time of 4:30 pm to be at the canoes.  So we focused on getting there before time and not being booted from the race.  With this in mind we chose to skip CP4 which was all alone up a water fall with about a 6k m there and back trip.  When we passed the CP we were actually in the LEAD!!!! minus the CP.  the 3 teams battling for first place passed us on the road.  Each team was over heard saying things like “what the! they have a girl and they are ahead… the must have skipped CP4”.  Having a girl puts us in the ‘elite’ group and there for a threat to them.  It was fun having them think we were beating them.

We made it to a rogain section and picked up the mandatory 4 of 5 CP’s.  Upon reaching the manned TA where folks from CP4 and CP11 would meet back up we found that CP 4 took some teams 3 hours to get and others 3 hours not to ever find.  So skipping was a great call.

David was convinced the HEED mix would take care of his electrolights so
he and Laura mixed that nasty stuff into their water.  Later after his
legs cramped up and he fell off his bike we decided in fact that that
junk not only tastes bad but doesn’t work.  We all switched to the
Hammer pills.  In a side note, he did take of his tight bike pants and
that did seem to help for a bit.  Point here is to know your gear and food and what it will do to you.  He got better but mostly he just sucked it up and pushed through it.  His ability to push through pain is something to be admired.

We made it to the canoes around 3:00pm.  This part of the river was pretty hairy.  I’m a descent canoeer but this even made me a little nervous.  We had some nasty rapids, a few water falls, and loads of treacherous rocks.  At one water fall they made us portage around… it was about a 10ft drop.  We hit one rapid with a shoot and a semi hidden rock that caught us.  I yelled paddle backwards and david and laura only paused for a moment as they decided to trust the moron yell to “paddle backwards”.  We went down the rest of the rapids backwards!!!  in the middle I did an E break and swung us around and had them motor us over the next section.  No one got wet!

behind us the team in matching gear smashed head long into a rock and the front guy when shooting out.  David, being a nice guy, asked if they needed help.  Little did he know I needed all the help he could give us at that moment.

So the canoeing was fun but we did get hammered finally.  Laura said “wow what a great job Andy”.  And of course not 5 minutes later I hung us up on rocks 4 times.  Filled the canoe with water (not a tip) once and general messed up a lot.  Then it started to rain and thunder and LIGHTENING.

This was pretty scary.  It was getting late and dark and nasty and some racers we passed said it was another 45 min of rowing.  Little did they know we had Laura and the fear of a mother that crossfits onboard.  She paddled with massive strokes.  we did the 45 min part in 20-ish minutes.

We had to beach the canoe 3 times to dump all the rain out.  It was crazy.

We made it to the next manned TA where we were to plot our next points and wait till midnight to continue.  We found an abandoned house to squat in for a bit to stay dry and plot.  By midnight we were ready to go with a great plan.  but we missed the part where the RD said the FORD is out.  So of course we went to the FORD and well it was out.  So we turned around.

after getting back to that TA david was in some serious foot and knee pain.  we stood there for 10 min talking about stopping.  he decided to try it out and on his first step almost fell over.  So we called it a day.

It was a fun race with some crazy sections fraught with danger and excitment.  We’ll have loads to laugh about when looking back on it.
So thanks to the Battista’s for a fun race.

We learned about our gear and refueling and next time will crush it.

-Andy

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