Team Alpine Shop 5th Place: USARA National Championship

“Overall, Team Alpine Shop covered approximately 9 miles of paddling, 26 miles on foot, and 80 miles on mountain bikes, all through the hilly Maryland terrain.”

After 29 hours of racing, Team Alpine Shop finished 5th overall at the USARA Adventure Racing National Championships in McHenry, Maryland this past weekend. Team members David Frei, Emily Korsch, and Jeff Sona have been training for this event all year, and were thrilled to improve upon their 8th place finish from 2013.
Photo Credit: Vladimir Bukalo

Photo Credit: Vladimir Bukalo

The race started out with a run…straight up the 600′ ski hill of WISP Resort. After reaching the top of the hill, teams were challenged with a swim relay through ASCI’s man-made whitewater park, featuring Class III-IV rapids. Then, teams ran back down the same ski hill to get on their bikes for the rest of the race – a combination of mountain biking, paddling, and trekking to find over 40 checkpoints scattered throughout the hills of Western Maryland. And as with all adventure races, the course is not marked – teams must use a map and compass to navigate their way through the race.
Photo Credit: Vladimir Bukalo

Photo Credit: Vladimir Bukalo

Team Alpine Shop made an early strategy choice to skip two of the paddling checkpoints as allowed by race rules, and found themselves near the lead for much of the day. After battling back and forth with Team Checkpoint Zero from North Carolina and Team Odyssey from Virginia, Team Alpine Shop pulled ahead in the overnight orienteering section of the race. Team Alpine Shop maintained their lead over these teams for the remainder of the race, but were beaten at the finish line by 4 teams who had not skipped the paddling checkpoints early on. Team Tecnu from California repeated as National Champions, and Team Bushwhacker from Illinois came in a close second place. Team Untamed/madathlete.com from New York and Team DART-nuun from California rounded out the top 4 positions.
Overall, Team Alpine Shop covered approximately 9 miles of paddling, 26 miles on foot, and 80 miles on mountain bikes, all through the hilly Maryland terrain. In addition to the grueling course, the team dealt with fierce headwinds, heavy rains, and temperatures dipping into the low 40s around sunrise – a tough combination when you’re trying to bike at top speed!
AS_team_beach

Photo Credit: Vladimir Bukalo

Photo Credit: Vladimir Bukalo

Next year’s USARA Adventure Racing National Championships will be held in Eastern Kentucky, and Team Alpine Shop hopes to continue their climb into the top ranks of American adventure racing teams.

Mackeen’s vs. MR340: Never Give Up!

Hi Everyone! Wow, it’s been about six weeks since we finished the race, and have had time to contemplate the enormity of what we did. You heard about the race mostly from my point of view, the support crew director. I thought it would be fun and interesting to hear about the experience from the…

Floating Is All There Is To It, Right?

The MacKeen Family vs The MR340 MR 340 Thought for Day 3: “All the kayakers have to do is float down the river all day.” – Sandy Sandi When I began to plan for the MR340, I thought, “All I have to do is organize food and supplies, look at the map and guide book…

The Secret To Getting (The MR340) Started

The Mackeen Family vs The MR340   The thought for Day One of the MR340: “The secret to getting ahead is getting started.” – Mark Twain Last night we considered parking our RV at a nearby WalMart, but opted instead for the parking area by Kaw Point, a stopping point for Lewis and Clark, and…

Red-E Oar Not, Here We Come

The Mackeen Family Versus The MR340 Here we go! The MacKeen Teams are ready for the MR340. We had our kayaks on a trailer behind our RV, and were on our way to the starting point in Kansas City, KS last night. After we had a safety briefing in Kansas City at 7pm and a…