The second difference was that this time I ran the course with a friend, which made it a lot more fun, upped the laughter factor, and made some of the trickier obstacles a little easier. Knowing the course and the challenges in advance also helped. For example, the wooden wall was a little easier to scale this time, and I was able to offer a hand to my friend as she pulled herself up. Also, the shoe-sucking mud pit with the quicksand-like consistency was easier with a friend to help pull each other along.
Somehow, with all the laughing and slipping and sliding, we managed to stay upright the whole way, except for those times when the challenge required otherwise, like the plastic covered hill which participants slid down on their butts. My friend sped down it at high velocity, even going airborne over some bumps near the bottom. I, on the other cheek… er, hand, must be very frictional, because I could barely get sliding, despite trying various deployments and body surfaces on the way down. (I also didn’t get much distance on the Slip-N-Slide at the Revolution Run last January, so it wasn’t just a fluke).
The other obstacles were varied and fun, and we went through them all without going around any of them, despite the cold rain and numb hands. But it was really the extreme mud in between that made it such a blast and kept us chuckling.
At My Muddy Valentine I shook off the mud and left quickly, looking forward to getting home for a warm shower, but this time we invested in the optional $5 shower and took advantage of the changing rooms. It wasn’t exactly Club Med, but the hot water felt great, and I was able to rinse off a majority of the mud, and stand among the hay bales and change into some dry clothes.
We reunited at bag check and headed to the bonfires to warm up some more and enjoy some beer and Qdoba chips with queso salsa. The obstacles weren’t Basic Training quality like some other adventure races, but the mud was the best I’ve ever seen, and I don’t think I’ve ever laughed as much at the sheer sloppiness of the course. Kudos to Terrapin Events for finding the perfect balance of organization, fun, and slop!