The Goofy, Part 2
Name Northern Olympic Discovery Marathon
Location Sequim to Port Angeles, WA, USA
Finish Time 04:00:55
Part 2 of the Goofy, the North Olympic Distance Marathon on the Olympic Peninsula in Washington, is a point-to-point race from Sequim to Port Angeles.
Aside from the fact that the area is absolutely beautiful and interesting (thanks @Ingo for that advice), it was also the best overall race of the season.
I started out rather slow, afraid of tired legs from the half, but soon discovered that I felt fine, so I picked up the pace, all the time keeping it at a comfortable level. After about 15 miles I realized that I could beat four hours, so I picked up the pace some more, until at mile 25 I was asking myself: "Why are you doing this? This was supposed to be the one run just for fun, and now you are trying to beat a target again!" So I slowed down, deliberately not beating the time marker and finishing happily in 4:00:55.
Race conditions: 3/5
The day started out slightly overcast, which some sun and the temperature picking up in the first half of the run. Just when I started worrying about it getting too warm, sunshine was replaced with rain, which got stronger up to a rather uncomfortable level. On the upside, that brought the temperature down, the downside were some large puddles on the path and wet feet resulting from that. Still, good running conditions overall.
The Olympic peninsula, which mostly consists of the 1 Million Acre + Olympic National Park and some surrounding towns, offers a fantastic scenery to begin with. The course itself followed mainly rural streets and converted rail-to-trail paths, ending in a four mile stretch along the northern coast with Vancouver Island in view.
Mostly flat, some rolling hills, a view very steep inclines/declines to cover a creek or too. But nothing that would require walking for more than a minute.
Good website, although a bit confusing, pre-race email update, easy to find race site, good signs and mile markers. Very good.
Finisher medal: 4/5
Nice, large, heavy, that's how a medal was meant to be.
So far the best quality in a race shirt, although the design isn't that great. Mostly flyers in the goody bag, no raffle. But the best ever post-race food. Local cookies, organic breads, yogurt, salads etc. And COFFEE!!!!!
The Cheer: 4/5
The whole community seemed to be involved in this event. Starting with numerous signs on residences and businesses welcoming the runners, to an (considering the size of the town) very large amount of spectators, to great aid stations, absolutely amazing.
A great race, worth even traveling from afar. If you do, make sure to stay a couple of days to enjoy the area.