The warm Oregon temperatures didn’t stop runners from participating in this years Angry Owl Ultra, hosted by Crusty Cap Events and race director Josh Christensen! This years event was year two for Angry Owl, adding the 24 hour race! Angry Owl offered an 6 hour ultra, starting Saturday July 28th at noon, or Sunday the 29th at 6:00a. A 12 hour ultra, starting Saturday at noon, or midnight early Sunday morning. Also, the 24 hour ultra, starting Saturday at noon. It was much warmer temperatures compared to last years inaugural event. It didn’t stop people from going out and concerning their goals. I watched runners in the heat drinking extra water, taking dips into a kid pool and getting extra support from family and friends. One thing they all had in common…they all kept doing loops around Bush Pasture Park! Race director Josh kept a close eye out as runners concerned their loops. Josh was excited to add the 24 hour race this year and there were a good amount who ran it! Their numbers for this years event went up. I’m sure it will continue to grow. Josh and his team make this event fun and are very organized. I love that they brought an ultra race to Salem.
The race start/finish was in a different spot this year. It was moved from the derby road over to the SE end of the park off Phillips Softball Field. I felt this new location was better for the runners. Their cars were right at the start/finish and is a better location for setting up port-a-potties and tent/resting areas for each runner. There was also lots of space for friends and family to comfortably watch and cheer.
Although only two years old, this event has quickly become a favorite for many runners. I got to see several of my friends take part this year and I joined them for a taste of running in the heat! Last year I ran the 6 hour race (my very first Ultra experience).
It is a perfect course to try out as a newbie to Ultra running. If you are an experienced Ultra runner, you will like this course even better! The loop around Bush Pasture Park is about 1 mile in length. The elevation is 157 feet to 170 feet, pretty flat and fast! This loop contains hard packed dirt, some well-maintained non-technical trails, a little grass, packed gravel, and a bit of asphalt. The loop runs on the derby track, past the stadium, through a wooded area next to Pringle Creek, around a softball field, and back around the stadium. The loop is well-marked for your first couple times around, then you have it memorized and won’t even have to think about it.
If you are looking for lots of bling, this race doesn’t have it! No shirts or medals. Every runner receives a really cool Angry Owl cap! A cool Angry Owl sticker and the satisfaction of running an Ultra event in Salem!
Check out Crusty Cap Events page on Facebook here!
Read my recap from 2017’s race here and Stacie’s inspiring story and race recap here! She suffered a stroke only two short years ago. After being in rehab to learn to walk again, she was determined to run again. She got coaching help and ran the 12 hour Ultra Saturday! You can get coaching from Crusty Cap events here!
WHAT’S WITH THE NAME? Owls at Salem’s Bush’s Pasture Park gained national attention by attacking a few runners and taking a few hats. Don’t worry, nobody was seriously hurt, and the attacks are rare. It became a fun talking point when MSNBC Reporter Rachel Maddow held a competition to design a sign warning park goers of the owl. Now, the signs are posted and locals and internet observers alike have had fun with the image and have even given the owl a name!