The annual Hood to Coast running relay is understandably celebrated as a signature Northwest event. But if you’ve ever participated, you know that it involves a lot of motor vehicles.
What a hassle!
Two weeks from today, a squad of Portlanders is inviting a few people to join a trial run of an interesting experiment: a Hood-to-Coast style running relay that relies on bikes, not vans, for support. Here’s the description of the “Peak to Rising Tide” relay from organizer Jamey Harris:
We’re a group of friends and friends of friends who are excited to do a running relay race with bikes instead of vans. We’re not sure if this has been done before (though we haven’t done a lot of research on that point).
Some of us have participated before in relay races that use vans for transportation between running legs. We really appreciated the challenge and beauty of the courses and the camaraderie of the teams, but we wondered whether there was a way to conduct a relay race without all the traffic, pollution, risk of injury from the motorized vehicles, etc. Running is so simple and special, in part because it does not require fancy equipment or motorized vehicles, so it seemed a shame to stage a race with such a large impact. We all love biking, so we put two and two together and decided to stage a relay event of our own!
Some team members are passionate about peak oil and climate change, a friend suggested the name, and it stuck.
But all of that is just an explanation of the event’s origin. We decided at the very first happy hour that our only goal is to put together a fun, positive, human-powered event. It’s been great working through all the logistics. We’ve had a series of happy hours to meet each other and decide on details. We’ll be using a bike trailer to haul the current runner’s bike from the start of his or her leg to the end of the leg. And everyone has committed to biking to and from the start and end points of their teams’ sections. So, in the end, even though we’ll be running from Timberline Lodge to the coast, we’ll be doing a lot more biking than running.
We still have a few slots open on the team and (perhaps too ambitiously at this point) we are open to a group putting together a second team to run the same course.
What a cool idea. Here are some more details from another organizer, Nadia Dahab.
On Friday, August 21, and Saturday, August 22, we will bike and run from Mt. Hood to Seaside. The twelve-person relay team includes three subteams, each traversing 1/3 of the relay course (Mt. Hood to Portland (A), Portland to Vernonia (B), Vernonia to Seaside(C)). Each subteam member will bike to the start of their course section, run three +/- 5-mile legs along that section, and bike the distance between each leg. Distance traveled will total about 130 miles (more for subteam C members).
Interested in joining? Email email@example.com.
Michael Andersen was news editor of BikePortland.org from 2013 to 2016 and still pops up occasionally.