2008 Feedback

A very well organised event with a great feeling around it. There were amazing sights on every part of the track that we just breathtaking. On Harris saddle, the sun came out, the wind died down and the fresh snow on the ground was just magic: once in a lifetime! The people manning the huts & drink stations were encouraging & really helped create a great atmosphere. The dinner & breakfast at the Luxmore Hotel were fantastic (except the baked beans that my friend ate. This created a terrible ambience when I was running just behind him).

Nervous and cold, didn’t like the run up the road but can see the purpose of it. Wasn’t as steep as I expected but the scenary was something else and you had to stop just to admire it. Run was fun, people at the stations were great, finish line is always good and great a needed drink was on hand. Finish line well organised and great. Just stunning race would recommend it to everybody.

Really great.

One of the highlights for me was the way that people would stop to give a hand if a runner was having problems . Also the way that the race officials interacted and encouraged the runners .

Highlight would have to be running in the snow – can you arrange for dumps 2-3 days before every event?
.. not enough space !!! – not to sum up all of those feelings :)… i only do one liners these days 🙂 .

Felt uncertain and apprehensive, but excited beforehand. Highlights were seeing Lake McKenzie and then climbing further above it. Major highlight was reaching harris saddle and marshall calling out my name. Couldn’t believe the beauty at Lake Harris. Still able to run at the finish was great – and a big welcome for Evan was even better!!!

The only down point was when when I stepped aside to allow those 2 chicks you’ve got pictured below pass after the Harris Saddle. For some reason it really annoyed me that they didn’t acknowledge or say thanks. I made it my mission to beat them to the finish line but failed. If they are back next year I will get them then.

Before the event – anxious During – excited / exhilarated / sore / After – delighted. Hardest bit: from Howden to MacKenzie. I underestimated the distance and got frustrated by failure to achieve my target times. Other stretches were harder (esp climbing up from Mackenzie but I had been realistic in my planning for those.

The Routeburn Classic is not just another mountain running event, it is a weekend of adventure. The run over the track is the undoubted highlight but the adventure also consists of overcoming the logistical challenge posed by the tyranny of distance, with a compulsory overnight in Te Anau. This means the adventure begins in Queenstown, allowing for a bit of banter on the bus trip, the building excitement of the pending canter in the mountains and to develop camaraderie among fellow runners who will share the adventure. At the finish there’s the beaming Ev with his size 10 paw pumping a firm embrace to welcome you home and after the run there’s the post race snarler, the witty reparte from Ferg and Qilly, a well-earned massage and sharing of the pain with fellow athletes while soaking up the sun. To cap it off the prize-giving is a classy affair befitting the occasion. What an awesome weekend! Big ups to the awesome race marshalls along the track dispensing encouragement and refreshments in eq ual measure!

Having the snow down to the tree line, blue skies, a view all the way to Martins Bay yet a very pleasant temperature to run in was juts amazing, especially as the track itself was pretty good and not too slippery at all.

Too much excitement/anticipation to remember to stretch before the race started! Gut busting getting up some of those climbs, but a magical view from the tops on such a fine weather day.

It was great to get photos of us during the event. All stations were well marked and had friendly people cheering us on. Really nice for the race director to shake everyones hand as they crossed the line. The medals were a really nice touch.

Fantastic day out, I had walked the route 2 years ago, beautiful to run it. Also the event was so well organised.

Great support along the way from helpers.

Being a road runner the track is very challenging, so I loved getting on the more even track for the last 8k. I could really put the hammer down and did the last 8k in 30min. I enjoyed everything about the race and managed to beat last years time by 20mins; so very content and i’ll be back for sure.

Before the event I was packing myself as my longest training run had been 15 kms. Highlight on the track had to be the glorious snow running part of it with amazing views all round especially around Lake Harris. I was apprehensive doing an alpine run at this time of year due to likelihood of poor weather but it couldn’t have been more perfect – I think we were all very lucky. I very much liked the sausies at the end, it’s exactly what I felt like having.

I was out to enjoy myself and left Usher to the lead while I took 50 photos and a couple of videos. Having tramped the track twice without views through the tops due to rain, low cloud and snow!! I cruised during the run soaking up all of the scenery from moss covered trees to snow covered peaks – third time lucky!! A simply wonderful day although the last 7 kms were hard as I hadn’t completed enough long runs in my build up the Routeburn Classic the the legs suffered. Commentary at the end was great. Being an Aucklander I enjoyed the stick being given out despite the fact that a large contingent had made the effort to travel down the the south to support the local economy!!

This was my first off-road adventure race, so it was all new to me. I had walked the Routeburn Track before so knew I would do the distance but running around the streets of Ponsonby and Herne bay is never going to equip me to be competitive on the Track surfaces. I took part for the experience not the finishing time! The track highlights were the turn-off to Howden Hut (found starting with an uphill run a challenge!), the whole stretch from Lake McKenzie to the Harris Saddle especially the snow on the Mountains across the Hollyford Valley (so beautiful), the lake at the top of the Harris Saddle, the waterfalls and i could go on…… I was pleased to finish. As one of the tail end charlies I run most of the last part from the Routeburn Falls Hut to the end by myself. Really appreciated the cheer squad part- way along the track. Special thanks to Mattie who drove me back to Queenstown (as the only bus passenger) at a good speed to get to Avis before 4.30pm.

Cheers for sorting things out for us mate – great to catch up with the crew in QT and not a bad run either

I could not have asked for a more perfect day. The sunshine and beautiful snow settled the debate about the trade-off between sunglasses and a little extra weight. Never mind, I’d probably only have broken them in one of my own spectacular Routeburn falls. I’m glad that, early on, someone reminded me to stop and admire the views rather than always staying focused on my next step. Didn’t do much for my time, but made the time spent fantastic.

The snow was the highlight for me. There was enough to look beautiful, most of it had thawed by the time I got there, and it caused panic in the Aucklanders the night before.

Before? nervous, confident. Just after the start before the single track; what on earth am I doing?. At Howden hut; OK 1/3 of the climb done might be on for 4-5hrs. At Earland falls – wow!, better stop and look around… After Mackenzie, s..t this is tough, but the last major climb. The traverse – fantastic. The saddle, beautiful but starting to hurt, R ankle dodgy from a sprain 3 weeks ago, L hip flexor – pain… The down, I like technical bits but not as fast as normal, still doing ok and passing some people. Falls Hut…getting tired. Falls – Flats ooohhh pain and then a nice skid on the slip to bruise the sore leg just to make sure…. The valley, ok you can move through pain and get a rhythm, maybe I’ll do 5 hrs. Last bridge, what 20mins to go? The finish, elation at the sight of the bridge and sound of the finish, but who put the bloody hill there! 4.32 pretty pleased. Room for improvement next year though!

My prior visualizations had me cruising across the track in under fours hours. Just under six hours later my aging body crossed the finish line with a smile. Great organization, lovely people and the spot prize topped it off!

I broke my ankle 2 weeks b4 the event so was more nervous than usual @ the start. It was good to know there was a safety net if I didn’t make it to the MacKenzie Hut in time. In the end I was slow but otherwise fine thanks to a soft splint and plenty of Panadol. I did feel the slide on my bum down the smooth rock to the Routeburn Falls hut in full view of the marshall has dented my pride beyond all recall. The day was just very special – sun on snow, blue skies + feeling of amazement that I was there at all! As for the finish line,

Before – apprehensive, have I done enough training ? During – knackered, and positive I had not done enough training. Finish – elated and determined to do more training for next year!!!!

Pretty relaxed before the event. Highlights were finishing in one piece and not falling off the track. Happy to see finish line but a few more kms on the flat would have been nice! Good food at end..lollies, biccies and sausies.

Anxious at the start, I knew that it was a step up mentally & physically from where I had taken myself before. Most memorable moment for me was taking in the view at the top of the zigzags out of Mckenzie. Crossing the finish kine was just fantastic as I knew all that effort was worth it.

for a first time long distance race was very impressed. Slightly nervous before the start, with a questionable training regime & wondering if i could go the distance Track highlight was definitely reaching the saddle in the snow & awesome views. Last 9km the hardest with jelly legs & cramps – all in all great fun!!

Looking forward to it what ever the weather. Had a time in mind to make and a time in mind I’d be over the moon with. I managed to come in under that as well. Highlights would be coming around the snowy tops, running the downhill will a video camera on, and trying to keep up with the girls pictures in this survey, for the last 10 km.

I had a bad cough leading into this race which was accompanied by the feeling of a lump in the throat and a bit of a stiff neck. I ran 4hr 10 for many reasons. Basically it came down to the brilliant Hospitality in Te Anau, catching up with my old geography teacher (which i must admit was hilarious), the race briefing on friday night, the snow and sunny weather over harris saddle, and the many friendly helpers along the course. The finish line took ages to arrive – i wanted to break 4hrs! Felt good finishing and was glad i monitored my nutrition well as it paid off in terms of minimising cramp and energy deficiency. Sausies were awesome (i must admit i had a few :-)) and the hot choco was superb. I remember running up that steep bit after mckensie hut into the snow. I then had weird thoughts about meeting the Israeli on the track next to the hole – that bit was probably the slowest of the whole race and i think i walked a lot of it munching on a muesli bar to sidetrack my strange thoughts. Al so, after spending ages at the finish line i was extremely amused by the guys on the microphones – it was more than hilarious!

This was the first race of this distance I have done and it is now going to be hard to know what I can do to top it – except do it again next year! And a good lesson was relearned – the body will get you there with training, but all the rest depends on the head. High points – the great team of people at all the water stations; the organisation of the event; the most beautiful part of the world; and best of all a great bunch of people to share the experience with.