Job Task: Run the 5Peaks Cypress Routes

It's Tuesday morning and Craig messages me, Tomorrow we are going to work at Cypress Mountain all day refining the Cypress 5Peaks route. We may have to run it a few times.

Is this for real? We get to work from the mountain tomorrow? I can't think of anything I'd rather do, than tether internet from a mountaintop, run around lots and support the upcoming 5Peaks race as part of my work day. I tend to use exclamation marks liberally, and this case is no different. This is a dream! Having seen all the pictures of the new Cypress course, I pictured my day: running around up high in the sun, taking in amazing views from Eagle Bluffs, and taking breaks to do internet work.

Wednesday arrives and we drive up to Cypress Mountain in the middle of a storm. Having driven up here to ski a lot in winter, it feels perfectly normal. Except, it's late July! The road is so foggy that we're clocking 20 kilometers per hour when we're lucky. I zip up my ski jacket over my head, protect my iphone with a ziplock bag, and now I'm ready to embrace this weather!

Today's task? Pre-run the 5Peaks Cypress Sport and Enduro courses before tonight's orientation run, so that runners can use our app to guide them on the courses, in case they aren't running right with the run leaders or sweepers. Craig's already added the routes to RunGo, and we want to make sure all the directions are clear, and also maybe add a couple fun messages along the way.

We head out to pre-run the Sport (6k) course as a "warm-up". My skin is still incredibly chaffed from the pouring rain of Saturday's Trailstoke ultra, but that doesn't matter. This is work I need to tend to! The 6k is a nice and fast route, so we stay pretty warm, despite becoming drenched in minutes. The route is good, and we add a couple fun messages. Such as, Finish, and go give (race director extraordinaire) Solana a big hug!

Craig on the Sport course!

Getting back out to pre-run the Enduro (11k) course proves a bit more challenging. Wet and cold, I set off to do my (weird, amazing) job. This route's much harder than the Sport course, especially in such wet conditions. At times I felt as though I was running down a stream, and others where I literally walked downhill to avoid falling on slippery bluffs. But it's all worthwhile when you get to the most amazing view over the Eagle Bluffs! Well, except today, the view is a foggy mist.

We finish our hard day's work right before the orientation runs start, and brace ourselves to get back out there. I give a little pitch about the app before everyone takes off, and take note that pity, or guilting the audience, seems like a great strategy for app downloads. I'm soaking wet because I've been perfecting this route on our app running the routes all day, can someone please download the app so that it was worth it? Audience seemed to laugh.

a huge turnout despite the crazy weather... no big deal for crazy awesome race director Solana! Photo credit: Gemma Slaughter
a huge turnout despite the crazy weather... no big deal for crazy awesome race director Solana! Photo credit: Gemma Slaughter

The runs were a great way to demo the use case for the app. While Craig and I were official leaders for the Sport course run using RunGo, a few of the runners who were too far away from us leaders managed to run off-course. They were not using the app, and we hope they try it next time! Luckily everyone came home eventually, as it would have been a terrible night to hunker down outside. (My lips were turning blue, according to some friends at the event.)

We can't wait to see everyone at the race day on Saturday. Look for us if you're coming out, we can give you a high-five or a hug, and tell you all about the app and how to not get lost. I'll be hanging with kids, managing the kids' 3k fun run all morning, Craig will be racing the Enduro, and our awesome new hire, Jamie, will be running his first trail race! (Muahaha... Not at all trying to bring him to the dark side!) Oh, before we forget, registration for the events closes at midnight tonight if you want to come enjoy a really nice 3k, 6k or 11k trail route! And if you want to try the app during the race, just download RunGo for free on iTunes, add the Sport or the Enduro course to your routes, then you're good to go.

Happy trails!

Check out this awesome race here on the official event page. For Facebook lovers, join the race facebook page here.