Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Funning in Trempeleau

We had a spectacular outing last weekend to "compete" in the Chase Trempeleau scavenger hunt. Chase is actually an acronym in this case for cycle, hike, and seek - all things that we enjoy! The organization Communities Off N' Funning puts on this event as well as a number of other events throughout the year. Their mission is to get kids to have fun outdoors. They know that to do this, they have to get adults to also have fun outdoors. In the end, they create an environment where kids are surrounded by healthy adult role models. Due to the competition rules, we have to play in the non-competitive segment of the event. However, we have the right equipment and skills to really be competitive. This year, with some knowledge of what we were doing and a much more capable "tail gunner", we rocked it! We accumulated 220 official points (we had calculated 240, but had at least one answer wrong and a photo fail). We rode a season record of 32 miles during the 3 hour race, and we had a ton of fun!
See if you can spot Noah with a face-wide grin running to the finish line in this album: Our team was called "big red bike" can you figure out why?
Let me explain this event a little better. You get a map with clues on it, a punch card, and the clock starts for a 3 hour race. You ride your bike all around town, with your team, to as many places on the map as you can get to collect points. The close-by, easy stops are worth 5 points, the far-flung or challenging spots are worth more, up to the highest point punch being worth 40. There are lots of 5 pointers, and only 1-40 point checkpoint. There are 38 or 40 total checkpoints and it would be impossible to complete them all. Sometimes, it's just a punch (they use Braille alphabet punches, I believe), other times it's a trivia question that is answered at the location somehow, other times, you have to take a picture to get the points. If you come back late, you lose points. Both years now, we cut it close and truly had to put on the gas to get ourselves through the finish line on time. Then, they feed you a fabulous pasta dinner (and cookies and brownies and lemonade) and give out prizes. 
Noah's favorite stop was the one where we had camera failure- take a picture of a member of your team roasting a lil smokie over the fire. I think he ate 3! Note to self, so that we don't take as a long at the roasting checkpoint, bring lots of good back pocket snacks to fuel the race. There are also a number of checkpoints that you have to hike to get to. If you're a big cross-trainer, these might suit you. We dislike the Mississippi jungle and bugs, so stuck mostly with the roadside checkpoints. Most checkpoints are un-manned, but a few have volunteers that might give further instructions. Ooh I almost forgot to mention that for one of the checkpoints, you had to hop into a canoe and paddle a little ways in the Mississippi backwater to get to the punch. How can you pack that much fun into a sunny morning anywhere else?! 

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