This Years Spring Challenge was epic for me. It took a long time to get a team sorted for the event. For some reason there's not that many woman I know who are chomping at the bit to do a 6hr adventure race! There were a few women who said they'd love to but couldn't afford the entry, a few who said it sounded great but they'd never be able to do it. So after registering 1 team and pulling out, I slotted into a friends team who had an injury. After weeks of training together and only 3 weeks from the race 1 of the team members pulled out due to pregnancy. We were really lucky to get a another woman to join the team at such late notice, especially one who was such an athlete.
My first Christmas at home for nine years was a very special one shared with my family, but the fun had only just begun as I was heading out to Glenthorne Station , Lake Coleridge that night with a few friends. We were staying in the middle of nowhere at the shearers quarters in the upper Glenthorne Station. Surrounded by glorious mountains, trees, bellbirds and horses, it was a great place to chill out for a few days, and get into some outdoor activities! Boxing Day we climbed 1100m to The Spurs at 1760m, it was a nice climb and we worked hard to get there but the views and serenity were well worth it.
Monday morning we decided to go for a mountain run from the shearer’s quarters through the Gargarus Saddle to Lake Lilian. There was a blustery Nor West wind with some horizontal rain at times, but Sully, Jimmy and I braved the elements and went for it. Despite the wind and rain it was very warm and once we were in the tree line the wind and rain was non-existent. The run up to the saddle was certainly tough; following along the mustering tracks we made steady progress without too much drama, but it was difficult to get into a rhythm and we had to walk here and there. After 50mins of running up hill we were at the saddle and it was fantastic. Some great undulating running with tremendous mountain views all around, and an easy rhythm. Unfortunately my hamstring was not right and I strained it blasting down the first descent, that slowed me down and I had to follow behind Sully and Jimmy so as not to hold them back! There were a few Canadian geese and hares out there but not much else.
Lilian creak provided a few small river crossings and then we got into some tussock bog lands which made things interesting. Jumping from tussock to tussock and running through some boggy areas made things challenging, but also fun. The run around the side of Mt Fitzwilliam was tricky with a few slippery rocks and narrow sheep tracks, but luckily no further injuries. We arrived at Lilian lake after 1 ½ hours and I went into the lake the soak my hamstring. The water was lovely and I was tempted to go for a swim but didn’t want to get too cold as the rain and wind was a little more predominant by the lake. Luckily our support crew arrived and we had a short walk to the car for a 4WD ride out of The Retreat along the Harper River. A good day out followed by hot showers and cold beers.
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