Hairy Gorilla Half Marathon

Yesterday I ran my first trail half marathon!

I had been wanting to run this local half marathon held up at Thacher Park for ages. I first ran the Squirrelly Six mile race three years ago, but the year after it was cancelled. Last year I was marathon training so I didn’t want to risk running 13.1 on a trail…finally this was the year!


Christine and I dressed up as Minnie Mouse and a cat.

One of the reasons I love this race is because it is Halloween themed! There are runners in costumes everywhere.


The trails are decorated with gravestones and there are bats hanging from the trees!


The first six miles of the course (the Squirrelly Six), are the toughest. There are a lot of big hills…I was prepared to walk them because I wanted to save my energy for all 13.1 miles.



When you hit the point where the six mile runners split, you have the option to go with them, which was kind of tempting, but I wanted to run the full 13.1 distance, so off I went, and the runners thinned out A LOT!


The second half was a lot easier than the first, elevation wise. But my legs got pretty tired and I felt myself stumbling around for most of the last five miles. I expected to fall, but thankfully I didn’t! There were a couple of spots with big crevasses that I was sure I was going to trip and fall into, but I managed not to.

There were really great aid stations all throughout too, something I was worried about since running MHR Half two weeks ago. I made sure to drink enough, and even ate some m&ms at the last few stops because I was getting pretty hungry. They definitely helped!


Pretty soon there was 1 mile left, and for most of the second half I was running completely alone, which was kind of nice. The trail was very well marked with mini gorillas hanging from the trees, as well as with pink tape, so I never got lost or wondered where to go.


Hairy Gorilla Half Marathon
Distance: 13.1 miles on the trails @ thacher state park
Time: 2:34:33
Average Pace: 11:47/mile


Afterward ARE puts on a BBQ, which was awesome! Neither of us had any appetite, so we waited a bit, changed and then drove down to Jake Moon for some brunch.


The Clarksville Scramble, yummmm

It was such a fun day yesterday! And now my legs are super sore. Hope everyone has a great week and HAPPY HALLOWEEN! 😉

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  1. Congrats Jen! Awesome job esp for such a challenging course. Glad you made it out injury-free. Maybe next year for me!

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