The greatest Obstacles were the Queues
By Kamille Roach
Entering the Western Mudd Rush; an event boasting lots of mud and 8 km’s encompassing 18 obstacles, was not only new to us, but new to Western Australia. Following the style of such events as the Tough Mudder from over East, the Western Mudd rush is a unique physical challenge encouraging teams and teamwork and the spirit of cameraderie in a tough, dirty environment.
My personal aim was to complete the course without breaking a limb.
On a sunny day at the Equestrian Centre; the temperature in the low 20’s, we lined up at the event start line buzzing with energy. The DJ and MC further hyped the crowd with tunes like Eye of the Tiger and instructions to throw your arm over the person beside you and jump up and down. Dress up was embraced, so we were graced with the presence of Bert and Ernie, Footy players, old ladies, lingerie clad men and some colourful mohawks. Admittedly, the six foot muscleman wearing white Y – fronts was probably more eye catching than the others combined, for all the wrong reasons.
Our start was delayed by just a few minutes while Ambulance men cleared bodies off the course (just a wrenched neck and broken ankle; no actual deaths as far as I know).
Then off we ran at an optomistic pace, encountering the first of many muddy ditches as promised, though this one had lines of plain and barbed wire over the top in case we had ideas of keeping our faces out of the mud. Being an equestrian centre meant there was a good deal of horse manure in the mix, so all participants wore a certain rural aroma by the finish line.
Several kilos heavier owing to mud, water and gravelly sand lodged inside our clothes, we ran and negotited our way over log hurdles, through water filled pits and under heavy rope nets with – you guessed it – thick mud underneath. As participants came to a tall rope wall, it became apparent that this really wasn’t a race. Everyone was helping each other; women holding the rope steady for men, teams helping to haul each other over, men giving women a leg up, and strangers yelling encouragement to each other. The logo on the t-shirts of a team of young men calling themselves the ‘Mudder Duckers’ stated; We only help the Pretty ones, but they were just as willing to lend their hard earned gym muscles to help others.
Unfortunately, with 500 participants starting every half hour from 9am till 3pm, there were several bottle necks at the slower obstacles, the first being the steep, 40m waterslide. Here our muscles slowly stiffened and froze while waiting an hour for our turn. After rushing down the slide and running to maintain circulation, we came across another big queue at a steep, rubber wall where participants were waiting to climb over using a rope. Cold and fed up with waiting, we bypassed this obstacle and continued on to our second water station where we were given a can of ‘Mother’ soft drink which tasted like nectar from heaven. Rejuvenated, we climbed over a massive stack of hay bales, followed by 32 fences to alternatively jump over then dive beneath, and walked through a tub of ice water that froze us from the waist down.
Very wet, but enjoying running along the Avon river through native bush and past sleepy horses, we encountered futher mud to add to our already concrete-like shoes, a rocky hill called the F*** Off Hill and finally came to our last challenge; waiting for over a hundred people to climb two at a time over a high, verticle wall. Fourty five minutes later it was our turn to haul and be hauled over the high wall, where big, strong guys were put to use(thank you tall, fit bloke who threw me over) and run through the finish gate. Fresh fruit was handed out and we ate from our muddy paws as we lined up for a cold beer from the Feral Brewery and sausage bun. Inside the finishers tent, hay bales were provided for muddy backsides to sit upon while music boomed from speakers on the stage.
Still cold and keen for a hot scrub rather than a cold wash off in the stables, we headed home with our medals and a few kilos of Equestrian Centre mud (I wonder if they want it back?).
The day was a great success, though the queues were a real trial and we hope Trievents will respond to feedback regarding this, so next year will be even better.