Installment 2 – Flying Pirate ½ Marathon
The next weekend started the travel. My husband and I headed to Outer Banks, NC to do the Inaugural Flying Pirate ½ Marathon. I have wanted to do a race out there for several years, the Outer Banks ½ Marathon in November, so when I saw this one and it fit into our schedule I had to sign us up for it. It ran the first half of the November full marathon course. Of course it had a theme so we had to dress the part.
The course was beautiful but truly challenging. It started on the city streets in Kitty Hawk and passed though Kill Devil Hill. Up to this point it was pretty flat except for one good but short hill as we left the west shore. It was so pretty through the neighborhoods. I hadn't ever seen the type of flowering trees that I saw along the course.
I may be slower, but how many runners saw these?
After we headed away from the west shore we turned in toward the Wright Brothers Memorial. Thank goodness we didn't have to go up to the memorial, just around the base.
It was when we reached Jockey’s Ridge State Park in Nags Head at mile 10 that things became interesting. We turned off of paved roads onto a sandy, dirt road and here is where the hills started in earnest.
The park was beautiful. I was amazed at how "swamp" like the area was.
Finally at 12.5 miles we turned off of the dirt road onto a trail that was covered in pine needles. Now the challenge really hit. It went UP for about a tenth then became rolling until 12.9 when it again went UP!
Once we reached the top of the dune at 13 miles the final tenth was DOWN a steep incline covered with bark. One thing that made the trail so challenging was the surface. It was soft and moved enough that it was hard to get a good push off. The finish line was a welcome sight.
Me & John after the race, arrrrrrrgh!
"Hey Outer Banks, thanks for a great weekend and a fun race. I'll be back in November, gotta do the other half!"
The following day, Monday, it was drive back to Norfolk to catch our flight home. We would be heading out for our next half in less than 4 days.
(to be continued...)