Published 12:00 am Friday, September 2, 2011

by Shavonne Potts
LANDIS — I have never been what you would call an adventure-seeker, but I understand the adrenaline rush and the thrill of a sweaty T-shirt once the adventure is done.
That is exactly what I didn’t expect when Town Manager Reed Linn asked me if I was going to “go through the whole trail.”
The trail was no walk on the beach as Post photographer Jon Lakey pointed out. I didn’t expect it to be, sort of.
I wanted to write a story about the upcoming Down and Dirty Adventure Run taking place later this month at the Lake Corriher Wilderness Area. After a few phone calls and a commitment from Jon to take photos, we were set.
Linn told me to wear my boots, only because he knew I may have shown up in four-inch heels otherwise. Laugh if you want, I’ve done it.
The men he’d gathered Thursday, including himself, will make up a four-man team during the Adventure Run — Ron Miller, Dick Overcash, Reed Linn and Blake Overcash also known as the “Three Old Timers and a Rookie.”
We swapped a few jokes about the terrain, but there was no backing down. I had to do it, the whole trail.
The trail is mostly natural with lots of tree roots and twigs along winding paths. But there are a few spots that were cleared off by the Landis Parks Director, town staff and volunteers.
There wasn’t that much mud, which I was kind of hoping for since the event is a “Mud Run,” but there were a few places that enough water had mixed with dirt to sully the bottom of my boots.
There was plenty of steep hills (mountains), the kind you have to take a running start in order to make it to the top.
I made it to the top with the theme to “Rocky” playing in my head or maybe that was Parks Director Andrew Morgan humming it as I surfaced, tongue hanging and sweat pouring from my face.
Speaking of tongue hanging, as I reflect back, I realized I did that a lot and left it to Jon to capture it on camera.
To say I was tired by the end was an understatement. I’m not in the greatest shape and I’m more of a Zumba-Tae Bo-kinda-girl. I exercise about three times a week, but there are no hills or boulders to climb in Zumba or Tae Bo.
The thing is you don’t have to be in the best shape to have fun, and have fun you will if you plan to brave the obstacle course and the mud for the Adventure Run.
I finished the course in 1 hour, 20 minutes, right behind Crystal Karriker, who is on the YMCA board of managers and has volunteered hours helping to clear trails. She stayed behind, I think, to give me little encouragement as I walked across the bridge leading to the gravel parking lot and to my invisible finish line.
Although I was tired, sweaty and a bit sore, I had fun. I was exhausted and energized at the same time. You adventure-seekers know what I’m talking about.
The Adventure Run is Sept. 24 and will mark the official grand opening of the wilderness area.
Features of the wilderness area include walking and hiking trails, camping and fishing, as well as canoeing and kayaking.
Much work has gone into developing the trails and the entire site for wilderness recreation. Talks began about five years ago on what could be done to enhance the area.
The Y and the town are hosting the adventure run, which will feature two-person and four-person teams as well as JROTC teams of four members, who will complete a nearly 4-mile obstacle course.
Children as young as 5 can participate in a Dirt Dobber Kids Fun Run.
In addition to the race, there will be camping opportunities, a kayak race later that day and a bonfire and move night.
• Entry fees, by Sept. 17
Individual, $25
Two-person team, $50
Four-person team, $100
JROTC, $40
• Entry fees, race day
Individual, $35
Two-person team, $70
Four-person team, $140
JROTC, $80
REI Dirt Dobber Kids Fun Run, Sept. 24
• A half-mile run for children 12 and younger who will complete several obstacles on the Y sports fields.
• Entry fee, by Sept. 17
Children, $10
• Entry fee, race day
Children, $15
For more information or to register, go online at, in person at Landis Town Hall, 312 S. Main St., or the South Rowan YMCA, 950 Kimball Road, China Grove.
Race day registration will be from 6:30 a.m-8 a.m. at the South Rowan YMCA.
Event sponsored by Dick’s Sporting Goods, REI and Great Wolf Lodge.
Contact reporter Shavonne Potts at 704-797-4253.