I’m having a great time. It’s like I’m on some ridiculous big roller coaster not knowing what’s happening next, but just having a great time on the ride.
I haven’t been running a ton of official 5Ks this Summer. That isn’t to say I haven’t been running but because of financials, no time or a mix of other circumstances, I’ve run on my own. That is, until I saw the Roller Coaster Race at Six Flags Great Escape and Splashwater Kingdom.
The concept of the race is simple. You run a 5K or 10K through the park (I believe the 10K was just running the 5K twice) and then ride 5K worth of roller coasters within the park. You could run and not ride the roller coasters or ride the roller casters and not run, I decided to do both. 5K = 16,405 feet of coaster, as long as you rode that between the Alpine Bobsled (1490ft), Flashback (1870ft), Comet (4197ft), Steamin’ Demon (1565ft), Frankie’s Mine Train (787) or Canyon Blaster (2036ft) before 5:00PM, you get the medal.
The run was lovely & started at 7:30AM. The signage was a little confusing but being able to run through the park without anyone there was rather peaceful. The volunteers guiding us were great at cheering us on! There were some uneven parts of the course but most of it was flat aside from one hill near The Comet. The race was about half blacktop and half dirt which for those who aren’t used to trail running, made part of the course a little challenging. Every participant receives a medal and t-shirt & park admission comes with race price.
The interim part was a little strange though. It’s understandable that the organizers had to wait for people to finish the race before they allowed us in the park but depending on when you finished, we weren’t allowed in the park until 9:30AM and there was nothing else to do. At first, we thought it was pretty great that we’d have a half hour to get a head start on roller coasters before the park opened at 10AM but no roller coasters during that time were counted so we didn’t bother. My friends and I went into the park around 10AM and even by that point some of the rides weren’t even open yet.
Once we got going though, it was pretty fun. After each roller coaster, they make a mark on your wrist band to be calculated when you leave. We wanted to ride the Comet a bunch of times because for one, it’s my favorite but it’s also the longest and would make our count go by faster. To our dismay, the Comet was closed for the first couple of hours. After a bunch of lines, a bunch of catch-up rides on the Comet once it opened, and a ride on the VR part of the Steamin’ Demon, we finally got our 5K which also included a medal and a shirt.
Overall, it was pretty fun. All of that sun and all of that roller coaster plus a 5K was a lot! I was pretty wiped out the next day but it was fun to have a goal and it doesn’t hurt to have two medals to show for it!
[Quote by Samantha Mumba]