Bucket-list Hood to Coast Relay 2015

image

Ironically, I started my blog three + years ago with the hopes of one day being selected for a sponsored  Hood to Coast Team.  Living on the East Coast, I felt my chances of rallying a team and running the epic Mother of all Relays was merely a pipe dream.  Little did I know that my blog would assisted me in being selected for the AnotherMotherRunner.com 2014 SanFran to Napa Ragnar Relay Team.  This epic adventure ultimately lead me, via #BRF Melissa,  to my 2015 Hood to Coast Team!  Many thanks to Melissa for extending me an invitation to join her team.  There was not a moment of hesitation upon the invite.  It was am immediate YES, HELL YES! BUCKET-LIST Baby!  I was ecstatic!

Arrival to Portland! Pittock Mansion. Hazy skies from the wild fires

Arrival to Portland! Pittock Mansion. Hazy skies from the wild fires

No trip to Portland would be complete without a visit with fellow BAMR, Sarah Bowen Shea!  After all, she and Dimity are the only reason Melissa and I know each other.

Sarah, Jennifer, Melissa!

Sarah, Jennifer, Melissa! Rooftop Eastlund Hotel…ok this pic is in the bathroom:)

Weeks leading up to the relay there were significant concerns the wild fires might have a negative impact on the race.  Fortunately, they winds shifted  days before the start and the fires were not going to be an issue.  The next issue was rain, which Oregon desperately needed.  Rain or no Rain, nothing was going to dampen my spirits.

Van #2 We like our "Middle Leg" Hard (horrible name:) but GREAT Team!

Van #2 We like our “Middle Leg” Hard (horrible name:) but GREAT Team!

Ready to go! Warm but not rain! We headed off to the first major exchange Sandy, OR.

Mt. Hood in the distance. I was giddy with excitement each time caught a glimpse.

Mt. Hood in the distance. I was giddy with excitement each time I caught a glimpse.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Roadside Cheering  and cowbell for Manda

Roadside Cheering and cowbell for Manda

Leg 9, 5.38 Moderate, was me! While it was a warm 81 degrees it was nothing like NC 81 degrees.  It felt great and I laid down the best pace I had run in months!

Boaring, OR...Ready for my first leg with teammates Amy and Melissa.

Boaring, OR…Ready for my first leg with teammates Amy and Melissa. Small world as Amy  use to live in Raleigh and was the cross country coach at my daughters high school and her husband and I worked for the same company.

Leg 9- Springwater Trail

Leg 9- Springwater Trail

Each run got us closer to Portland.  Oddly enough exactly where we started earlier in the day.  Amy ran leg 12 into the next major exchange on the waterfront downtown Portland.  What a treat to see the city at night.

Hawthorne Bridge, Portland, OR

Hawthorne Bridge, Willamette River, Portland, OR.

image

Keep Portland WEIRD!  Runners certainly did their share.  This was too good not to capture. He was rock’in those booty VEGAN shorts! I sure hope he was fast.

Benson Bubblers! Historic bronze bubblers in downtown Portland!

Benson Bubblers! Historic bronze bubblers in downtown Portland!  Note relay fashion- Injinji toe socks and Chacos…nice! Anything goes!

Van 1 was off again and we ( Van #2) had our first break. Oddly enough, we were back where we started in Portland.  The perk of running with native Portlanders is we were able to rest at team mates Jenny and Melissa’s houses.  Conveniently, they are neighbors!  It really could not have gotten any easier.  Melissa’s husband ( Sean) had a fabulous meal and beverages ready for us!

The late night spread!

The late night spread! Homemade Spaghetti Sauce he cooked all day!

YUMMY!

YUMMY!

 

Sean...West Coast Hubs!

Sean…West Coast Hubs!

This was posh relay running! Real food, hot shower, and a bed for a few hours.  I almost felt like I was cheating.  It was fabulous!  Certainly a “treat” I did not experience on my previous two relays.  I embraced it! 12:45am we were off to St. Helens, OR to meet up with Van 1 for our next big exhange.

RAIN, RAIN, RAIN!

RAIN, RAIN, RAIN!

The weather took a drastic turn. Rain, high winds, and hail.

Paul's awesome idea for exchanges was an umbrella with lights!

Paul’s awesome idea for exchanges was an umbrella with lights!

Ready for night leg!

Ready for night leg!

3:30am, I was off on my 2nd leg 21, 5.06 Moderate.  The sky absolutely opened up.  It rained so hard I had a hard time seeing in front of me.  The thunder and lightning absolutely freaked me out.  All I could think about was that I had on Melissa’s bib with her emergency contact.  I was going to be dead from a lightning strike and they were going to call her hubs ( Sean) instead of mine.  I prayed and ran as fast as I possibly could in the pitch black.  Despite being slightly rattled, the run was great and I enjoyed it.  I lived to tell! I was completely drenched head to toe when I was done.

Last major exchange Astoria, OR at dawm

Last major exchange Astoria, OR at dawn

Chilly and breezy, the rain ceased and the skys started to clear.  We headed to our next exchange so we could get some sleep.

SUN!

SUN!

Downed trees, limbs, leaves. The roads showed the aftermath of the wind and rain.

Downed trees, limbs, leaves. The roads showed the aftermath of the wind and rain.

The van lots were a muddy mess so we moved to plan b and slept in the van.  While not ideal we all caught some z’s.  We got another round of wind and rain.  I was so scared a tree was going to fall on our van as we slept.  It was insane!  It was so windy the “Honey Buckets” aka Porta Potties on the east coast BLEW OVER!

Blown over Honey Buckets! Melissa anchored down the one on the far right. She felt it rocking! Lucky girl!

Blown over Honey Buckets! Melissa anchored down the one on the far right. She felt it rocking! Lucky girl!

We all caught some zzz's. I slept in the drivers seat!

We all caught some zzz’s. I slept in the drivers seat!

Blue skies!

Blue skies!

We had gotten word that the finish line had to be moved off the beach in Seaside due to gail force winds.  We were just happy the we were able to still run given the crazy hurricane like weather.

Van mates! Manda was running!

Van mates! Manda was running!

We were off on our final legs and our journey to Seaside.  The sun came out and temps rose into the low 60’s.  Perfect running temps! WINDY!

 

Ready for leg 33!

Cold weather clothes shed…..Ready for leg 33!

My last leg 33, 7.72 hard, was beautiful.  I enjoyed every minute of it and just took in the beautiful Oregon country side. image

image

My wonderful team mates, who for the first time were able to support me during my leg.  I could hear them way  before I saw them!  They were so great!

image

image

Loved the bicycle fence.

Loved the bicycle fence.

So excited when the Dead Jocks in a Box, featured in the Hood to Coast Documentary, passed me.

So excited when the Dead Jocks in a Box, featured in the Hood to Coast Documentary, passed me.

 

 

I was obsessed with the birch trees. Melissa, collected me some birch twigs while I ran! hehe

I was obsessed with the birch trees. Melissa, collected me some birch twigs while I ran! hehe Post run, cool temps were back!

Exchange 35-36, we found food and set Amy off on the final leg into Seaside, OR.

YUMMY!

YUMMY! Burger and Craft Beer!

Chilly and so happy to be almost done!

Chilly and so happy to be almost done!

Melissa's Vuvuzela performance made the H2C news coverage!

Melissa’s Vuvuzela performance made the H2C news coverage! Beer, Cowbell, and vuvuzela…this girl has talent!

 

image

4:00pm ish Seaside here we come!  The finish line was moved to the boardwalk. The beach finish line area looked like a war zone.  The wind was still whipping.

image

waiting for AMY!

DONE!

DONE!

Cheers!

Cheers!

Van 2 Celebration!

Van 2 Celebration! Phones in hand!

image

Hood 2 Coast Relay DONE! Bucket list checkoff! You don’t do it for the medal!

Sunday am storm aftermath.

Sunday am storm aftermath. I can honestly say I experienced all weather that Oregon has to offer!

H2C did not disappoint.  I had an absolute blast!  Fabulous experience!  Thanks Melissa for making this happen!  I cannot wait for round 2!

Despite the finish line being closed on Saturday we got our official picture on Sunday am!

Despite the finish line being closed on Saturday we got our official picture on Sunday am!

 

 

Advertisements

One thought on “Bucket-list Hood to Coast Relay 2015

  1. Pingback: Croatan24 Race Recap 2015! | BoxerRunner

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s