This event is another in a series of Mud Runs that raises funds for charity, in this case benefiting MS Research. I was one of 5 other photographers hired to cover this event, and I was tasked with photographing the “Walk on Water” obstacle.
The obstacle involved running across platforms made of ABS plastic that were strung across a portion of the pond and separated by blue barrels in metal brackets. The platform was partially submerged, and fully submerged when there were enough people standing together.
This involved removing some foliage along the edge of a bug infested marsh to make sure I was out of the path of the runners, setting up a folding chair and a couple of umbrellas. The forecast said we were due for rain, and boy did we.
In events of this size participants are typically broken into different groups with different start times for the race. By 11:30, the event organizers were already pushing the different heats of runners forward on the clock, in an attempt to beat the approaching thunderstorms. Unfortunately they ran out of time, and by 1:15 or so, the skies broke into a steady downpour with strong winds and lightning.
After we got word to pack up, I was able to save my camera, but just about everything else I had with me was soaked completely, and there had to be a couple cups of water in my boots. I should have wore my Vibram Five Fingers, at least those can go in the wash. What a mess. The worst part was finding shelter for the hour or so it took for the shuttles to return everyone to the parking area, some mile and a half away.
The event was held at a Paintball/Airsoft park in Lakeport, Illinois, a southwest suburb of Chicago. About 2 and half hours of driving, that seemed a lot longer on the ride home.
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