Working for Wherescape means always being open to new experiences both in and out of the office, and so with much trepidation six of us persuaded each other that registering for the Coastal Challenge would be a great idea as we all love a challenge. This is a run heading south down the coast of Auckland’s North Shore and finishing in Devonport. We decided that the 33km “full monty” run would be too much for us and opted for the next longest distance of 22km. We had heard that is was quite a tough course and so opted for a “leave no man behind” approach and aimed to all cross the line together, despite our very varied age, height, weight and running ability.
We were in for a shock as there were far more stretches of rock scrambling, wading and swimming that we had anticipated. Only the last km of the race was on tarmac and the water, rocks and sand really made the preceding 21km very hard work. We were all pretty exhausted by the time we crossed the finish line. We also escaped any serious injuries although most of us have a few new scars to remind us of some of the more challenging parts of the race. We also learned that phrases on the Coastal Challenge website like “Deep water wading” actually meant “Swimming”!
The results for the 2011 event show near the bottom in the 22km mens section we came 97th-102nd in a time of 3hrs 39min 27secs, with all 6 of us crossing the line together as the only team finish.