They Call It Adventure Racing For a Reason
By: Marty Pemberton
This article is about four people; schoolteacher Wayne, Sean the paramedic, Kirk and Marty (both desk jockeys for the federal government), who head out for a long adventure race haul through the Bala, Ont. in Muskoka. They then don't seem to do quite as well as expected, but the adventure that they got out of the experience will be long remembered by each of them.
Their little adventure started off with a short run (roughly two kilometres) to split teams apart and since none of them were very experienced adventure racers, they decided to walk this distance. This was also to assure that none of them pulled a muscle in the first ten minutes of the race or something embarrassing like that. While they may not have been the best, which meant they stuck to a slow and steady pace, their navigating which was mostly done by the schoolteacher Wayne, was nothing but bang on. There were a heck of a lot of obstacles for this group of people to become and it was even more difficult since they were all pretty new to this type of thing, but they persevered and pushed on even when they wanted to quit. They may not have finished the race but they had a lot of accomplishments to be proud of after the event. Things like a solid twenty-five to thirty kilometre canoe trip which included a heck of a lot of portaging and bush-wacking, or successfully traversing through an extremely deep swamp (so deep that when one of them stepped in the wrong place, he fell in neck deep) during sundown. Afterwards they headed back to their hotel, ate some pizza, drank some beers, and slept for fourteen hours straight. Even though they didn't quite succeed they still had a great time, and I think that's what it's all about.
This article was a great read for me because I love hearing about peoples treks through wilderness parts of the world, whether it be in a competition or not. It also made me think more about perhaps getting involved in these sorts of events myself, for they seem like a great learning experience and a lot of fun for someone who enjoys the outdoors as I do. I would definitely also say that this story, among other things, is a good reminder for me to always persevere and do even better than my best, but still to know my limit and when I need to stop. Since I'm not the best with that area of expertise, I think reading articles like this will help me to improve those skills from reflecting upon others experiences.
Pemberton, Marty. “They Call It Adventure Racing For a Reason” Ottawa Outdoors: Your Outdoor Adventure and Travel Guide. Ottawa, Ontario. Dave Brown. Fall 2012. (pg, 12-13). Print.