To be honest, I’ve never been very interested in obstacle course or mud races but what makes Mud Hero different is it is really non-competitive. Sure there are some people who race it for time, but the majority of people are there just to have fun. Some of the harder obstacles offer an easier option and if you want to skip an obstacle, you can. No punishments like other obstacle races. Since it was all about having fun, I was in.
Like, I always do, I set out my racing outfit the night before. Normally, I wouldn’t wear brand new clothes to a mud race, but Columbia wanted to prove that their clothes are #TestedTough.
Heading to the race, one of the things I noticed right away was the organization. There were signs leading you to the site for miles down the road. There were parking attendants to keep everything in order (though the parking did cost $10 which I wasn’t a fan of), and the registration booth and bag check were simple and took only a matter of minutes.
I invited Chelsi along as my second entry and we met up with Kaella and June at the start to
run walk together.
As we were waiting for the race to start, it was raining, I was worried we would end up being cold during the race but the weather quickly turned around and we actually had the perfect day. Not too hot, but definitely not cold either.
We all lined up for the 10:30 start. They announced that due to the rain, one of the obstacles was closed for safety. No problem, we had 17 other obstacles to go through. The beginning of the race led you down a really long, steep hill that because of the rain the whole night before turned into more of a mud luge. I was very grateful for my Columbia Trail shoes, which kept me upright during this part while everyone else was slipping and sliding.
My favourite obstacle came up quickly, which was the mud slide. The slide was steep and I was scared at first to go down but it was a lot of fun and the muddy water at the bottom felt very refreshing.
With soggy shoes, the group of us decided to give up even trying to run after this point and just walked between obstacles and laughed the whole way. We made our way through the frog spa, which did not smell like any spa I’ve been to! The volunteer here was hilarious, he would tell people a “good way” to get through the mud which would lead people to fall into giant holes of mud and he would laugh hysterically. I found it incredibly amusing. We learned quickly that you don’t stop in the mud or else you get stuck.
When we came up to the rope pull, I wasn’t sure I’d be able to make it to the top.
I pulled myself all the way to the top but right as I went to reach the top ledge, I slid right back to the bottom. I tried a second time and slipped again. Since there was a line up behind me, I opted to move over to the easier side which had a bit of a ladder to assist and made it over the wall that way.
The final obstacle was awesome. They call it the muddy lagoon. There were basically rolling hills of mud. You would slide into one mud pit and crawl out the other side before doing it again. If you weren’t muddy by this point, there was no way to avoid it during this obstacle.
We slid, we got stuck and we laughed a lot during this obstacle!
We all crossed the finish line together and got ourselves a medal! Our 1:47:47 finish time wasn’t exactly breaking any record paces, but it wasn’t about the pace for us.
After the race, we headed over to the group shower which was an experience to say the least. Trying to get this much mud off of you isn’t easy. It felt like the more you washed, the more mud you made. So we did the best we could, got changed and headed to the beer garden for our free beer.
When I got home, I took my clothes and shoes directly to the hose. Then after one wash, they looked just like new.
Overall, I had an absolute blast at Mud Hero. I think its a wonderfully organized event and I think it’s a great value. Your registration fee gets you entry, a free beer, race t-shirt (which was really nice), race photos (big bonus in my mind) and tons of memories!