For the second time in as many runnings, the sun shone down in amazing clarity and warmth at Run Wild Adventures winter race series, the Willamette Mission Trail Challenge 10k & 5k. While pre-2012 runs were extremely muddy, my participation in 2013 and this year provided a dry and sure-footed atmosphere, with only a few sections of mud along the way. The newly mowed and trimmed trails greeted runners of both distances as we circled the park. The first 3/4 mile is pretty slow, aside for the top handful of elite runners, as the trail is thin with only a few areas for passing. However, it is actually kind of nice, as the surrounding atmosphere is peaceful and meant to be taken in.
As the trail widened, we hit a large open field near the small Goose Lake, and followed along a dusty dirt trail bordering the park boundary before we disappeared back under the covered tree canopy. What may have been a river crossing, if conditions were different, was nothing more than a brief rocky path. The final few miles to the finish were the most “rolling” of the race but still pretty minor.
Check here for full results.