Mother Nature adds extra challenge at the Salomon Adventure Challenge: Mountain Aire
Spring snowstorms are not uncommon in Alberta, but the snow that descended on Mountain Aire a week before the race produced an extra challenge for the race directors and the teams. The weather turned a race that was designed to reward teams with aggressive navigation and fun single-track biking into an awesome slog through thick mud and snow.
The remote start line powered by Komex's solar powered mobile power station stood tall amongst the dense trees of Mountain Aire.
The course began with a short and challenging trekking section through a network of ATV trails which surprisingly threw many experienced teams to the back of the pack. Raid the North teams Pure and
Lost But Making Record Time led the stampede of racers on CP1. This lead was short-lived, with team Touching Our Void breaking through the pack to the first TA (CP2). But team Flash 5, who were in 3rd place at CP1, decided to add more challenge to their race by misreading the coordinates for CP2 and ended up trekking to Hwy. 940, before realizing they were roughly 90 degrees off-course.
CP2 was start of an epic bike ride along an undulating dirt road that was recently cut for fire prevention. The snow melt turned this fast bike section into an entirely new challenge. Teams stuggled to keep their bikes free from the cement-like mud, which packed their tires and added upwards of 15 pounds of weight to their struggles. The dry south-facing slopes enabled teams to progress slowly to the next TA, CP3. This section claimed 7 teams, which did not make the 4:00 PM cut-off. Despite the conditions teams, such as Crape Geomatics and Komex Kinetix pushed through to claim strong positions at CP3.
Gargantuan Maroo started the trek in the lead, and held their lead through a network of snow-packed cut lines into CP4, with Touching Our Void and
Lost But Making Record Time right on their heels. Aggressive navigation was seen by another Komex team TRIPOD, who took more risks and maintained a strong position (7th place) into CP4. The course led teams to the edge of a beautiful snow-covered gorge and down a steep path to the checkpoint over 800 ft below.
Just under 6 hours into the race, the first teams were greeted by smiling volunteers before they took to the rafts at the second TA (CP5). Late snow melt kept the water levels low and forced teams to run with their rafts through shallow sections of cold mountain water. This was a true test of team work and paddling skills. Desperate to meet the 7:00 PM cutoff, teams Contabesco and Flash 5 ran down from CP4, and showed true team spirit and perseverance. The fastest teams came off the water in 1 1/2 hours, with team TRIPOD gaining two places through skillful paddling.
The finish line at Mountain Aire Lodge was a short 1.5 km run from CP6. Determined to reclaim places lost on the water, teams made a strong push for the finish line. The epic race was won by Gargantuan Maroo in 7 hours, 39 minutes, followed by Touching Our Void, only 9 minutes behind. The first Co-Ed team to finish the course was
Lost But Making Record Time, who led a steady, strong race and completed in 7 hours 53 minutes. Team Wild Rose were the top-finishing women’s team, with a time of 9 hours, 20 minutes.
For finishing in first place in their category, teams Gargantuan Maroo,
Lost But Making Record Time, and Wild Rose all won FREE ENTRY to the 2004 Salomon AC Championship, giving them the opportunity to race against the country’s best teams and to win FREE RACING IN 2005 with Frontier Adventure Racing.
Race Director Lucas Rosnau congratulates all teams that confronted Mother Nature, in particular the new calgary FAR club members! This was a challenging race that took teams beyond the realms of the Salomon Adventure Challenge format. We hope that teams learned from the both the highs and the lows of this race and we look forward to seeing you in the sunshine at Salomon Adventure Challenge: Silver Star.
Click [HERE] for the race results.
||Salomon Adventure Challenge -
||Mountain Aire, AB
||May 16, 2004
$350 per team.
Online credit card payment available this year (via
PayPal) - Visa, Mastercard, American Express and
Discover! Pay now and secure your team's early
pricing entry - several SAC events
sold out last year!
Competitor Update (PDF)
How the Race Works (PDF)
2004 SAC Rules and
2004 SAC Gear
40+ km, 5-8 hrs, unsupported
Teams of three: All-Male, All-Female, or Coed
Mountain Biking, Trekking, Paddling
Top 5 teams in each of the three categories (All-Male, All-Female,
and Coed) are recognized with medals and prizing
the top 3 teams in each category win:
1st - free entry to
the SAC champs
2nd - 50% entry to
the SAC champs
3rd - 25% entry to
the SAC champs
What you get:
Salomon Adventure Challenge performance t-shirt, race jersey,
post-race awards banquet & social, a great meal, sponsor swag, great
prizing, and one incredibly fun racecourse.
|Simon River Sports
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$20 per paddle
Kicker: $15 per paddle
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2004 Salomon Adventure Challenge events:
SAC: Marmora, ON
SAC: Mountain Aire, AB
SAC: French River, ON
SAC: Montebello, QC
SAC: Charlevoix, QC
SAC: Kawarthas Region, ON
SAC: Thousand Islands, ON
SAC: Silver Star, BC
SAC: Canadian Championship: Calabogie, ON