It is almost 2 weeks ago I ran Cold Hawaii 50 miles. A race pretty much dominated by the weather, as the last 5 hours rain was pouring down, but lets get back to the start.
Cold Hawaii 50 miles is a race from Bulbjerg to Agger following a walking path close to the coast. My goal was rather simple: finish belong 10 h and get a top 5 placement home (only 30 runners started). Start was at 6 o'clock in the morning and as we stayed in Agger (the finish location) this meant joining the bus from Agger at 4:30. Good I managed to get some coffee before.
Cold Hawaii 50 miles
The weather forecast had predicted rain the full day, so I was happy to see it was actually dry at the start. The start was in the dark as sun would first rise a little after 7 (amazingly there were som runners without lamps). Right after the start a steep path down from Bulbjerg, followed by running over a rather flat path through grass for about 20 km started. Now I am not too comfortable running in the dark, I like to see a couple of meters ahead, so I ended up in front of the race (ups, now that was not part of the plan...) and after 5 km or so we had a small group of 5 runners together. Speed was about 5:30 /km and quite comfortable with wind in the back. Most beautiful was the part around 17 km where we had something like a km on the beach (it had just got light and was still dry). As said all very comfortable, but then we hit the hilly part (20-30 km), where the group broke. I ended up in fourth position, as I simple had to run too much in the red zone to follow the first ones. For somebody claiming to be a mountain runner, I suck at running uphill..... Instead I slowed a bit, and ate and drank well and enjoyed the landscape which was rather pretty at times. Passing the start for the 50 km race at around 31 km, the next 8 km were the most boring ones, as we ran on a bikepath next to a big road. Running alone, music in my ears my thoughts were drifting when suddenly bammm, I crashed, I was lying on the asfalt. Typically me...easiest part of the course and I end up with a bloody knee and hands... Meanwhile to make things better, the rain started....
Arriving in Klitmøller, it was pouring down. At the depot, in a busstop, I had a dropbag and changed to a dry shirt and shifted to a heavier rain jacket. Now just one marathon left following the well known Thy trail marathon, but in reverse direction. So that should be rather easy and I was doing well timewise. What i did not count on was how bad the beach was, which we hit at 50 km and had to follow to about 60 km. Especially the last 5 km were terrible running/walking, as no hard sand around. All this while the sky had opened. What could have been beautiful was just tough and very wet.
Very happy to leave the beach we entered Thy National Park, which can be beautiful, but on this day I just experienced it as desolate and raw. I knew the route, but was surprised and very happy to see the water from the ground was gone, so no passing lakes and other uncomfortable wet passages. But the water from above compensated rather well. From 60 km it was just trying to keep as much speed as possible to get home. I was passed by some 50 km runners and 1 more 50 miles runner and was happy to cross the finish just after 9 hours in 5 position. Mission accomplished :-)
Bit disappointing as I expected a nicer race, but this was simply due to the bad weather, as the course is quite beautiful, except for the bike path. Next stop TransGranCanaria (O no, the new route contains 3 km beach....)