Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Light at the end of the tunnel marathon

July 15, 2012

Quick recap:

Hyak Tunnel
After the marathon, Crystal and I stopped at the start line to capture some pictures
Dark Hyak Tunnel 
Tunnel Entrance
My daughter, Crystal, and I were headed to a college orientation that would start Monday and my marathon was along the way so we made a pit stop at my cousin's house on Saturday. We were treated like royalty and while Crystal slept in Sunday morning, I made my way to the Ole Cedar Mill Mini Storage to catch the bus to the Hyak Tunnel trailhead located on the John Wayne Pioneer Trail.  The ride seemed endless, one of the reasons I don't like riding from the finish to the start of any marathon.

This summer day was perfect for running with temperatures not exceeding 60 or so with rainfall late in the race. The coolness aided many runners to personal best times for the marathon.

The race started along the trail with a short section in the opposite direction and then we turned around and headed for the dark tunnel, headlamps and flashlights en masse. The great thing about the tunnel is that it is flat and the footing was sure. My headlamp's batteries must have been bad because I could barely see more than 2 feet in front of me so when someone began passing me with their Sun lamps, I hung on to their pace for dear life. My lesson for next year is to check my batteries and carry a flashlight.

The light at the end of the tunnel was SO FAR AWAY but we eventually spilled out of it 2 miles later and super volunteers took our lights and made sure they were put in our drop bags.  The course follows the John Wayne Trail.  Here is a map of the course:  Light at the End of the Tunnel Marathon Course

Spectacular views and a net downhill course made this marathon like manna from heaven.  I was warned about the downhill causing quadricep pain but I had no problem with it. I was able to run a few miles the next day.  Much of the race I spent with Mary Hanna, either side by side or leapfrogging.  The time flew by for me and soon I was cruising into the finish line in 3:21:34, first in age group and 7th female overall and 37th overall.  My friend, Lori, crushed the course in 3:07, taking 3rd!
One of the amazing views along the course - hope you're not afraid of heights!

This is on my list of MUST DO AGAIN.

Pedro finished his 100th marathon! 
Bill Barmore congratulating me at the finish,  probably saying, "But Lori still kicked your butt."