1 Apr 2013

Coast Mountain Trail Series | Cap Crusher 8k

Posted by pricey

About a month ago in BC, something really cool happened.  A new race series, named the “Coast Mountain Trail Series” popped up from out of nowhere and promised;

“A new collection of quality, challenging, professionally run trail events in world class destinations around Vancouver’s North Shore and Sea to Sky Corridor.”

To sweeten the pot even more, the series is locally owned and operated by the dynamic duo of Geoff Langford and Gary Robbins; who very successfully launched the Squamish 50 franchise last year.

I could not, not be involved with this event.

First up was the Cap Crusher – Canada’s toughest 8k with 1600 feet of climbing and descent – this is no ordinary 8k.  At the time of signing up, 8k was the only distance available, how ever the boys got creative and quickly added a 13k race to this event as well and I was in two minds about what distance to run. In the end after much flip flopping I stuck with the 8k and was pretty glad that i did.


Photo Credit – PhotoBomb Creative

The 13k got underway at 9am and we followed shortly after at 9:15am.  I was pretty excited to see the course as I have only ever run the Cap Pacific and TCT trails out at the canyon. Geoff counted us down and a small group of us at the front surged ahead.  It was all fun and games until we crested the first climb on the course, the terrain facing me downhill required careful navigation and if I wanted to say on my feet I needed to show it some respect.  A few years ago I would have bombed it with disregard, these days however, I let the guys go and carefully navigated my way down.

As the terrain leveled out the running became easier with a series of flowing trail, quick navigation, flowing trail, quick turn, stride it out, hairpin, climb a little, bomb a little downhill, duck into a trail and pop out on another.  Just when you start to think about your next move, you are greeted by a smiling marshal quick to provide direction and if you are lucky you get a high five along the way!


Photo Credit – PhotoBomb Creative

As the course is a series of loops, once you double back in reverse you get to see all the other racers of both the 8k and the 15k.  This was a welcome relief  as I ran most of the first half alone and everyone loves some company on the trails.  In the second loop, along with all the oncoming traffic, I ran for a bit with Graham Perkins and we were back at the final grunt before we knew it.  Graham pulled ahead and I chugged up this crazy steep trail that honestly didn’t even look like it was a trail, rather just the steepest bit of terrain in the area with a few pink flags on it.  Love it.

Like all good things, it was over quickly after it began and I managed to snag 4th overall with Karl Woll showing a super strong performance for the win.  Mike Murphy won the 13k with Adam Campbell just behind him. The atmosphere after the race was super relaxed, with lots of encouragement for finishing runners and lots more high fives. There was a good crowd at the awards, which were an event on their own.  Gary does a great job on the mic and there were a ton of prizes, and a few off the cuff challenges to keep things interesting.

For me this series is just what the community needed.  The local community was out in force to show support and experience the inaugural race. It was a place for runners experienced and new to come out and challenge themselves on a well designed course in a beautiful world class setting. The event was professional, well organised,  and supported with great sponsors like Kintec, Moveo and NSA. This series is a non intimidating environment for the new runner and great test for the more seasoned.

Roll on race 2 in Squamish Survival of the Fittest. Post race beer garden and live music – see you there!


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