For anyone looking to start their addiction to OCR’s, look no further than Warrior Dash. This weekend’s event at Camp Warwick in Warwick, NY, was both challenging and liberating for a newcomer such as myself. The main hub of the event was abuzz with newcomers and pros alike, all eager to get on the course and into the mud! The volunteers in each tent were prepped, energetic, and efficient in order to get all participants where they needed to be, even offering encouragement as bibs were pinned on and ID’s were checked for post-course beer! (Who doesn’t love earning a shock-top for playing in the mud?!)
As participants stood in line to tackle their wave, DJ’s at the entrance and main stage amped up their guests with shooting competitions and pre-wave chants, revving the energy and easing any first-time jitters. The path to the first obstacle was challenging, yet doable, a trail runner’s dream with interval inclines, declines, and streams. The first obstacle, “Upslide Down”, was a welcome challenge after jogging through the woodsy terrain, followed by the barbed wire army crawl that all warriors must tackle at least once in the course of their OCR journeys. Volunteers stationed along the path cheered as they handed out water to the passing warriors, offering praises such as “You’ve got this, warriors! Keep going, you’re killing it!”, offering encouragement and praise. As someone tackling obstacles for the first time, having support along the way was much needed and appreciated!
The next few sets of obstacles included challenging rope-assisted climbs up and over a 30ft pyramid, tests of coordination across swinging pallets, and feats of both upper body strength and perseverance through a tube of cargo nets 12 feet above the ground. The final two obstacles, titled “Goliath” and “Muddy Mayhem,” were the most exciting moments of today’s obstacles for a first-time OCR warrior such as myself. After tackling each obstacle, nothing compares to sitting at the top of the 30ft tall slide and taking in the full view of the party below before speeding to the pool of muddy water at its base. Then, just as you think you’ve rinsed off and conquered all there is to conquer, you’re faced with 100 feet of pure mud and sludge, complete with barbed wire to crawl below, ensuring no chance of treading through on foot – it’s a full-body mud bath for all!
I speak as a newly turned OCR junkie when I say that this race was the epitome of an ideal first-time event for anyone and everyone looking to enter into the sport. The obstacles are created in a way that is challenging enough for its attendees to feel the sense of accomplishment that comes in tackling them, but not too strenuous to deter a newcomer from participating and attending again in the future. I, for one, plan to attend future Warrior Dash events in my area any and every time I can as a result of the experience I had this morning. The location, obstacles, and atmosphere earned this OCR event a 5/5!
Have you done a Warrior Dash? Leave your own Warrior Dash review and feedback…