Friday, October 23, 2015

Lake Powell Half-Marathon

The name of every registeredrunner is on this poster.  Pretty cool.
The Lake Powell Half Marathon is in the books!  I took third place in my age division in what was by far the most beautiful race I’ve ever run. 

I was actually surprised that I placed, considering I set a new personal record – my slowest half-marathon ever.  That said, I felt better than I thought I would.  Between the KT Tape and the preemptive ibuprofen, my back felt OK and I ran at a pretty good clip for the first half of the race.  I got tired toward the end, though, and ended up walking a couple of tenths-of-miles at around mile 10.  I guess that was the 3 to 4 percent of fitness that I lost by taking a couple weeks off running while my back tried to heal.

The Lake Powell Half is part of the Vacation Races series, which hosts eight different courses at or near national parks.  In addition to Lake Powell, Vacation Races hosts half-marathons at Zion, Grand Canyon, Grand Teton, Yellowstone, Rocky Mountain, Great Smoky Mountains, and Yosemite. 

One of the coolest things about Vacation Races is their commitment to the environment.  While the course had ample aid stations along the way, there was not a paper cup to be found.  The company actually provided reusable hydra pouches to the racers.  These are lightweight, easy to fill and use, and easy to store on your race belt.  I didn’t take mine with me because I had my Camelbak vest, but I wish I had.  It would have been nice to get an electrolyte drink at the finish line and there were no cups there, either.  There were plenty of trash cans at the aid stations and at the finish line.  Their goal is no trash on the course – ever – and according to their web site they come very close to meeting it on every race.

I was also impressed by the Lucid Images, the official race photographers. 
I’ve been in many races where the photo packages were quite expensive.   Lucid offered a deal where if you paid $20 up front you could get all your photos, no questions asked and no extra charge.  They took 16 photos of me, and while a couple caught me blinking, most of them turned out great.  And I get to keep them.  All of them!

Sue and I had a great time running and enjoying the beautiful scenery, and had an even better time after the race.  After our traditional post-race mimosas, we took our race bibs and medals down to the beach for a photo op in the lake.  We also went to the Carl Hayden Visitors Center in the hope of taking a tour of Glen Canyon Dam, but apparently we weren’t the only ones with that idea because the tours were all full.  So we did our own tour, slowly walking across the bridge that we had run between miles 6 and 7 and taking lots of photos.

By the way, Sue took first place in her age group, came in well ahead of everyone in the age group ahead of her, and beat me by a good six minutes.  You go, girl!

Next year we’re doing the Yellowstone Half.


  1. I'm doing the Yellowstone also!!!!
    I did not choose the hydra pouches. Can I change my mind before the race and purchase one?

    1. I can't imagine why not. Email, give her your confirmation number and let her know you want the hydrapouch. That way it's included in your registration. See you there!