Category Archives: Non-Races

The Hardest CAC …….. Post I’ve Ever had to Write

It is with great sadness that I must inform you that we will not be providing you with free CAC. We originally planned to pleasure all of you with our CAC on April 5th, but that just isn’t going to happen.

Crying over our CAC

Sorry, James Van Der Beek. No CAC for you.

Whether you believe it or not, Bob and I have poured a crap-ton of work, not to mention our hearts and souls, into working on our CAC last year as well as the year before, the Deuce 3 years ago, and the First Team Virtus Non-Race the year before that (clearly we didn’t come up with good names for our Adventure Non-Races until the second year).

We’ve spent a lot of time away from our families as well as quite a bit of our own money to give you the best, free non-racing experience we could.

And we’ve loved every damn minute of it.

But we just don’t have time to get our CAC polished and ready by April 5th. Bob is now living in Ellisville and remodeling his house there, and my life is crazier and busier than ever with kid activities and other miscellaneous miscellany. It’s been really difficult for us to put our heads together and really work hard on our CAC.

Mmmm...

Bob likes to use all of his senses when working on his CAC. This photo was taken on a scouting trip from last year, and it was not staged. For real. Bob just really enjoys tubed meat.

 

So we’ve decided to postpone the CAC this year. We did not come to this decision lightly. We toyed with the idea of changing venues. We thought about using a permanent Trim course at Rock Bridge or Rockwoods Range to save us some time and hassle. We even considered doing an Urban Adventure Non-Race. We’ve thought about a lot of different ways we could provide you with our CAC again this year.

But in the end, we figured no one would want a soft, lifeless CAC, and we don’t want to offer you anything half-assed. And that’s exactly what it would have been if we had tried to put it together by April 5th.

We sincerely apologize. We hope you don’t hate us. And we hope we haven’t messed up anyone’s plans.

We’re still considering doing the Cinco-De-CAC-O (it would be our fifth year!) sometime later this year. If you’d be interested in that, please let us know in the comments. If there’s not much interest, we won’t waste our time.

We’ve also considered just doing a campout at Pine Ridge or somewhere else the weekend of April 5th just to get together and ride/drink/eat half-priced-meat together (Maybe at Two Rivers?). So let us know if you’d be down for anything like that as well.

Again, we apologize. We hope you can forgive us. We hope you don’t hate us forever.

Seriously. Please let us know if you want to see our CAC at a later date and if you’d want to get together somewhere the first weekend of April. Do it! Leave us a comment.

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Mud, Sleet, and Beers – The S.H.I.T.R. Half Marathon Race Report

You know those running shoes that are too worn out to run in, but feel oh-so-good to slip into because they, like your favorite pair of jeans, are broken in just perfectly?  Well, they don’t make good trail shoes – especially on a wet, muddy, messy trail..  Trust me on this one.

Robby, Bob, Christina, and I headed to Lost Valley Trail in Defiance, MO where we met up with Drew and a bunch of other crazy trail runners for Rock Racing’s SHivering Icy Trail Run (or SHITR for short).  This was a half marathon in the middle of winter at night.  Sounds awesome, right?

It wasn’t until I got there when I realized that I had forgotten my trail shoes… And my Garmin watch.  But the Virtus Code wouldn’t allow me to sit this one out, so I ran in my crappy Nike Free’s.  But oh what a run it was!

I am definitely NOT on my tip-toes.

I am definitely NOT on my tip-toes.

The cold and wind seemed to cut right through us as we stood around waiting for the race to start.  People weren’t sure what to wear.  One nut ran shirtless.  Others were decked out in full winter garments.  I chose to run in tights, a t-shirt with a long-sleeve shirt over it, a winter hat, and glittens (glove-mittens). Bob decided to wear this (although later he through a fleece on over the top):

Dress for success!

For Team Virtus, image is everything.  We dress for success!

Unfortunately, Bob would have to part ways with at least one piece of clothing by the end of the night.  Don’t worry… I’ll get to that.  Have a little patience.

We started the race by heading out to the top of “The Mound” as it was just starting to get dark.  The wind at the top was ridiculous, so none of us stayed up there more than a few seconds.  On the way down, I absolutely FLEW by the best runner on our team: Drew.  Don’t believe me?  Take a look at this video (courtesy of Robin Rongey from Rock Racing) at the 3:02 mark:

In case you couldn’t tell, the only reason I passed Drew was because of gravity.  I got going a bit too fast, and I couldn’t stop.  So I just went with it, and like an out of control snowball tumbling faster and faster, I flew down the stairs and almost died.  It was probably the first and last time I’ll be ahead of Drew in a foot race.  And don’t worry.  He passed me shortly thereafter.

Before long, we had to turn on our headlamps.  The rain picked up as the temperature continued to drop.  Soon we were on some single-track.  By the time I got there, the trails had become a slippery, muddy mess.  And it was awesome!  I’m not sure trail shoes would have helped much, but my shoes were worthless.  I felt like I was skating more than I was running.

Somewhere in that muddy mess, Patrick from the 100+ Project and Russ (from Alabama I think) caught up to me.  Their company was much appreciated as we ran together for awhile.  The temps continued to drop, and the rain became more of a sleet/rain/snow mix.

It was dark.  It was cold.  It was raining/sleeting.  It was muddy.  It was slippery.  It was terrible.  Just terrible.  And I was loving every minute of it.

Before long, we found the mystery event.  We were supposed to find the name on a tombstone.  Patrick and Chuck had done a good job of marking the tiny cemetery with reflective tape, so it was pretty easy to spot.  Reading the name on the tombstone in the dark, however, proved to be more of a challenge.  Patrick already knew the name, so he couldn’t help us.  As we tried to make out the writing,  Robby Brown caught up to us.  Then Russ’s headlamp hit the stone sideways which provided enough shadow-relief that we could read “Caroline L.”

Trust me.. It was MUCH harder to read in the dark.

Trust me.. It was MUCH harder to read in the dark.

Even stopping at the tombstone for a few minutes caused our body temp to drop significantly.  So we quickly trotted off again.  I’m not sure who started it (‘Bama Russ maybe?), but someone in our group began singing “Sweeeeeet Caroliiiine.”  And all of us chimed in “Bah, bah, bah!”  It was a fabulous rendition that surely would have made the great Neil Diamond proud. And you’re welcome for getting that song stuck in your head.

Neil Diamond's Hairy Chest

“I don’t always wear a necklace, but when I do, I like to complement it with a massive amount of chest pubes.” – Neil Diamond

The rain had fully converted to sleet by now, and it was VERY cold.  I decided to pick up the pace a little just to keep warm.  Patrick was right behind me, but Russ and Robby had fallen off the pace just a bit.  This section wasn’t quite as muddy, but there was one small incline which was super-slippery.  As my front foot hit the slope, it completely slipped out from under me.  I was able to catch myself with my glitten-covered hands, but my foot flew up behind me and almost nailed Patrick in the face.  It was a close one, but we both made it out unscathed.

Soon we found ourselves back on the double-track which meant we were getting pretty close to the finish line.  I was tired and cold, but Patrick kicked it up a notch.  I too picked up the pace to stay with him.  Then we ran into Jim and Janie Smith from Team TOG and Monster Bicycles.  They were walking the short-course… In the dark and cold and mud and wet.  Very cool.

The Smiths on the Left and Dave Baettie on the right.

The Smiths on the Left and Dave Baettie on the right.

Patrick stopped to walk and chat with them.  As much as I wanted to, I was just too damn cold.  I said hello and good-bye and just kept running.  I climbed the last hill by myself, and as I turned on the last stretch just a mile or so from the finish line, the wind just punched me in the face.  It was brutal out there.  Even though I was having a blast, I was glad that it was almost over.

Then I heard some weird noises.  It sounded like a woman yelling.  So I slowed to a walk to listen.  It was indeed a woman yelling, so I ran ahead to see what was going on.  No one was in sight, but there were lights through the trees to my left.  After bushwhacking through a small block of brush and trees, I was on a small road.  There was a woman yelling, “Jeff!  Where the hell am I?!?  What the hell am I going to do?!?”  She seemed a little scared and quite pissed.  Then I realized that it was Carrie Sona from Team Alpine Shop.  She had gotten a bit turned around and off the trail, so we ran it in together until she saw her husband Jeff coming back for her.

They slowed to a walk, so I just kept running to the finish.  I couldn’t believe there were still volunteers at the finish to welcome me in and hand me an awesome SHITR sticker.  HUGE thanks to the volunteers out there!  I finished in 2:36.  Drew had finished 16 minutes ahead of me, and Robby came in a few minutes behind me with Kate coming in about 10 minutes after him.

SHITR Sticker

I was really cold, but I didn’t realize how serious these conditions were until I tried to get my keys out of my pocket.  It took me a several attempts and a couple of minutes before I could get my fingers to work properly.  Eventually, I hopped into the Virtus Van, cranked the heat up, and changed into gloriously dry, warm clothes.

As I slowly started getting warm, I began to worry about Bob.  This was his first half marathon – his longest run ever at that point I think.  Temps has fallen close to freezing by now, and the sleet was unrelenting.  The last thing I wanted to do was go back out in the nasty weather, but the longer I waited, the more worried I got.  Fortunately, Bob made it in about a half an hour after Kate, and I didn’t have to go back out there.

It seems Bob was slowed down by some intestinal issues.  Fortunately, our friends Chad and Bethany were with him to help him through this.  He came over to the Virtus Van, but he wouldn’t get in.  He had to be freezing his ass off, but he still wasn’t getting in.  Why?  Well, let me have him explain it in his own words:

For those that don’t know, Bob has some issues with pooping in the woods.  He has a routine he likes to follow in the peace and quiet of his own bathroom.  I, on the other hand, have no problem dropping a deuce behind a tree.  So I’m always giving him hints and tips on how to shit in the woods properly, and to be more specific, how to wipe after taking care of business.  So he finally followed my advice with success, but then… Well, I’ll let him explain it again:

So we had a VERY good laugh at Bob’s expense.  Bob left his undergarments behind, got changed, and climbed into the Virtus Van.  There were no casualties, and everyone made it out alive.  We all headed to a local Mexican restaurant where we had beers, margaritas, tacos, and many, many laughs.  Although none of us won the SHITR, one of us did win a prize – The highly-coveted SHITR Trophy.

The SHITR Trophy

A well-deserved trophy for Bob.

It was a truly amazing night.  Big thanks to Rock Racing and all of the volunteers!  And don’t worry.  This is happening again on January 11th, 2014!  Get excited, people.  And make sure you don’t miss this one!

CAC2 Gear List

I don’t think I’m being modest when I say the CAC2 has the best orienteering leg of any non-race we’ve ever put together. I can pretty much guarantee everyone, even the seasoned racers, will be impressed with what the CAC2 has to offer. And as much as I’d love to post photos of all the cool stuff you’ll see…I don’t want to ruin the surprise.

Rock arch at the CAC2 adventure non-race

That’s a picture of my little brother on a “not so recent” CAC2 scouting mission. Despite the obvious badassery going on in this photo, I can assure you that the picture does absolutely no justice to either the coolness of the rock arch he stands upon,  nor does it depict the deathplunge he would’ve experienced if he’d taken one step backward off of the rock. The CAC2 is supposed to be fun, but there are times when the CAC2 will demand your ultimate respect. Checkpoints have been placed in areas that showcase the land’s natural beauty, but also expose you to a bit of danger. This shit is serious business. (sometimes)

In that light, we’re going to require that you bring a bit of mandatory gear.

Individual Gear for the Entire Race:

  • Backpack with at least 50 ounces of hydration (bladder, bottles, old Boy Scout canteen, whatever)
  • Rain Jacket
  • Blaze-orange vest or scarf or hat (anything blaze-orange) to keep hunters from shooting your ass
  • Wool or Synthetic Stocking Cap
  • Whistle
  • Headlamp w/ fresh batteries
  • Camera (not exactly mandatory, but we’d LOVE to see some photos of our CAC in action)
  • Food

Individual Gear for the Bike Leg:

  • Mountain Bike
  • Helmet
  • Rear-Facing Red Blinking Light
  • Spare Tube

Team Gear for the Entire Race:

  • Compass
  • Fully-Charged Cell Phone in waterproof container (make sure it’s charged!)
  • Small First Aid Kit
  • Iodine Tablets or other water treatment method
  • Waterproof Map Case

Team Gear for the Bike Leg:

  • Bike Tool
  • Pump or Inflator
  • Patch Kit

Other Stuff I would bring:

Lawn chair, beer, various forms of pork, a positive attitude, DOG SPRAY, wood splitter, WTFAR repellent, a change of clothes, some clean shoes, Mayonnaise and/or Ranch Dressing for Brian of WTFAR, toilet paper, sunscreen, camera, extra batteries, a blow-up doll for Adam, extra bbq sauce, lip balm, coffee, tent and sleeping bag, extra compass.

That should cover just about everything for now.  Stay tuned for an update on the Gravel Grinder we’re doing on Sunday after the CAC2.

Who Wants More CAC?

For those of you that missed it out on our CAC last year (read Kage’s report here, and our race report will be done… Um… Sometime in the next 10 years), you should be ashamed.  The first CAC proved to be much longer and harder than anyone (Bob and I included) could have imagined.  While our CAC might have worn people out, everyone left with smiles on their faces, completely satisfied.

WTFARTR at the CAC Adventure Non Race

Well… MOST people had smiles on there faces.  Screw you, Todd.

The CAC will rise again, and trust me…  If you love having a good time, then you want to be all over this CAC.  This year’s CAC will be held (get it?) on April 6th, and HQ will once again be at the Pine Ridge Campground near Ashland, MO.  Camping the night before and the night after is free (because we have so much clout in Missouri), and last year it was ridiculously fun.  Just ask anyone who participated in the first CAC, and they’ll tell you that the camping was as much fun as the non-race itself.

The Carnage At the Creek Two (CAC2) is free (other than roughly 10 bucks for the map), and it will be roughly 6 hours.  Solos, duos, trios, quadros, or whatever kind of team is allowed. You will be hiking, trekking, running, mountain biking, hike-a-biking (maybe), orienteering, and you’ll possibly face a mystery event or two.

Row Boat at the Adventure Non Race

Dave man-handled the rowboat by himself. What a stud!

Unfortunately (or fortunately depending on how you look at it), the CAC2 will have no paddling event…

OR WILL IT?  MuwahahaHAHAHAHAHA!!!

No, it won’t actually.

Even without a paddling leg this year,  our CAC will still be (ahem) unbeatable.  We will have many more details to come, but we need to know VERY soon if you will be joining us or not.  The sooner you let us know you’ll be there, the more likely we’ll have a map for you.  So let us know ASAP!

You can comment below, or you hop on the CAC facebook even page right here.  So please don’t be shy.  You know you’ll regret missing this when you here everyone raving about how much they enjoyed our CAC.  Don’t be a fool.  Come join us!

CAC Attack!

As Bob noted in his last post, the best adventure non-race in the world, Carnage at the Creek (CAC), will happen again in 2013.  We aren’t quite sure on the date yet, but we’ll keep you posted on that front.  What I want to share with you today, though, is pretty disturbing.

It has come to our attention that our beloved CAC had come under a vicious and unprovoked attack.  No, I’m not kidding.  And I know what you’re thinking:

But how could this be?

Who would possibly attack a CAC that has given so many people pleasure?

I thought everyone loved CAC.

Well, that’s what we thought too.  But take a look at this:

Clearly, Todd from Whiskey Tango Foxtrot has some issues with the 2012 version of the CAC.  I’d like to defend my CAC since it is so precious to me.  So please watch the video above and then read my point-by-point rebuttal below.

Point 1: The Hike-a-Bike Section – This section may not have been “fun.”  I can admit that.  However, there are always parts of every adventure race where you think, “This sucks.  I’m never doing this again.”  But then you look back at it later and realize it was awesome… Unless you’re a wimpy Packers fan like Todd is.

Point 2: Getting Lost On the Way to the Race – Out of all the racers, volunteers, and super sexy race directors – over 30 people in all – only two people got lost.  Can you guess who they were?  I’ll give you a hint: Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum.  That’s right, Brian and Todd. (And I love the fact that Todd risked his life for this shot.)

Point 3: Local Turkey Hunters – Well, there isn’t much to say about this one.  Yes, it was turkey season.  Yes, there was one disgruntled hunter.  But he was probably more irritated with the 200 Bushcrafters in the area that weekend.  Besides, it’s not like anyone was shot.

Point 4: Ticks in MO – Missouri isn’t the only state with ticks.  Maybe Todd had more than his fair share of ticks, but that’s understandable.  Everyone knows that Ticks are attracted to high levels of estrogen. (Todd’s rockin’ a sweet hat, by the way.)

Point 5: SuperKate Sleeps Like a Baby – Okay, I can’t really say anything about this one either.  I’ve heard her snore, and it’s amazing that such a delicate, little flower could produce such a horrendous sound.  Perhaps she’s developed sleep apnea in her old age.

Point 6: Proximity of Jefferson City to Iowa – Nothing I can do about this one.  Maybe if someone put on an adventure non-race in Iowa, we would travel to that hell-hole.

Point 7: Snakes – It’s common knowledge that snakes, like ticks, are attracted to estrogen.  (A very nice touch sitting on the toilet in this shot.)

Point 8: Bad Singletrack – I don’t get this one.  I think the singletrack is easy and fun, but I guess I have a basic understanding of how my bike works and at least a modicum of athletic ability.

Point 9: Half-Priced Beef – I ate this questionable meat, and it truly was delicious.  And I didn’t get sick.  Man up, Todd. (That brownie looked delicious in this scene.)

Point 10: Bob Jenkins and Lukas Lamb are Sick SOB’s – What can I say?  We tried to emulate the sickest, most sadistic race director we know – Gerry Voelliger.

Point 11: Smelly Rowboats – Coming from someone who lives in the middle of Iowa, a state most well-known for the stench of pig poop, this makes no sense.

Point 12: ??????? – There was no point #12, but don’t think I didn’t notice that hideous Cheese Head in this shot.  You’ll pay, Todd Garrison.  Oh, you’ll pay.

Porn Stache

I think this weak attempt at a stache is Todd’s way of compensating for lacking in other areas.

Obviously, all of Todd’s issues with our CAC are unfounded.  For the rest of you, don’t worry.  The CAC will be back sometime in April (probably) 2013.  It will be bigger, longer, harder, and, as Todd said, maybe even bushier.  Please don’t listen to Todd.  He clearly has a case of CAC-envy.

 

 

 

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