Adventurers converged on Gull Lake this past week to participate in the annual fundraising adventure race from Oct. 3rd-4th.
This year’s event was very successful, said Gull Lake Centre Executive Director Steve Roadhouse.
“It was good, we made this year a little bit longer and a little bit harder than last year and I think it was fun,” said Roadhouse. “The weather was great and I think the racers had a lot of fun.”
Roadhouse added that the purpose of making the race longer and more challenging was to emphasize more on the “adventure” side of the Gull Lake Adventure Race.
He said that organizers made the bicycle portion of the race longer and added more puzzles to the race to make it more challenging.
Racer Alex Miller was pleased to return to the Gull Lake Adventure Race for the second time after participating in the first Adventure Race but missing last year’s.
Miller is a graduate of Gull Lake Centre’s Leadership Training and Discipleship Program (LTD), the cause the Gull Lake Adventure Race supports, and that is what led him to participating in the race the first time.
“I want to do it every year,” said Miller. “It’s a lot of fun and there are good challenges.”
Miller said that the LTD program has been incredibly valuable to him in his life and he wanted to do his part to help eliminate the barrier of cost for other youth who may want to take advantage of the program.
“If a kid can’t afford to come because they don’t have the money, that’s a terrible reason to not be able to do the program,” said Miller.
“So if they have things like this to raise money for the kids who don’t have their own funds to get into the program then that’s really great.”
Miller said that his leadership skills have greatly improved as a result of going through the program from 2008-2011.
In particular, his self-confidence has increased significantly.
The final phase of the race, the head-to-head team challenges, were Miller’s favourite part, he said. He said he is more competent at them than running or cycling through trails.
From his own perspective, Roadhouse said the hatchet toss challenge and the milk crate challenge, where racers had to climb on top of seven milk crates and change positions (while being secured with safety harnesses) seemed to be the most interesting.
He said that every year the race takes a lot of time and effort to put together, but it is certainly always worth it.
“It’s a blast,” said Roadhouse.
“It’s a lot of work putting it on but it’s well worth it because it is a lot of fun,” he added.
That’s not to say everything went off without a hitch though.
Roadhouse said the first event, where each team would have to build a fire on the beach to boil water before they could begin the race, had an elaborate beginning that was botched somewhat.
Roadhouse had arranged for a friend of his with a private plane to do an airdrop with the matches to light the fires.
Unfortunately, the flagging tape that was used to mark the packages all bunched together and they all got hooked on the tail of the airplane.
Roadhouse said about 400 hours of work goes into planning the race every year.
He added he has already started work on next year’s race, which will take place Oct. 2nd-3rd.
“I started planning next year’s race about a month ago,” said Roadhouse.
This year, 10 teams of four participated in the Gull Lake Adventure Race.
As for the fundraising, Roadhouse said he hadn’t completely totaled the numbers yet, but estimated the event had pulled in over $23,000 which was about what was expected.