For most, running is a solitary sport. One foot in front of the other, one breath at a time. Just a runner, his thoughts, and the wide open world around him.
Until now. Until Ragnar.
Named for the hero king of 9th century Scandanavia—a saucy fellow with a reputation for conquering kingdoms—the Ragnar Relay Series are 2-day overnight running relay events in which you and 11 friends form a team that piles into a couple vans and sets off for a 200 mile day-and-night race. Each racer runs three segments of the course. Or perhaps you’re born of hardier stock and decide to form an ultra team that includes just 6 of you. (May the force be with you, if this is the case.)
But Ragnar is much more than a race. Call it an adventure, a quest, the ultimate bonding experience for athletes, or just call it really, really fun. As in all roads, there will be obstacles. In Ragnar, this obstacle may appear as a cow. Parked in front of you on a rural road in Tennessee. And he’s not moving.
Expect the unexpected and you’ll do just fine.
No Ragnar race is complete without a level of pageantry in the form of decorated vans, tutus, super hero costumes, wigs and a few participants who rival the drag queens one might normally find in South Beach. This is a race that is as much about style as it is about substance.
It’s not all craziness, though. There are moments of peaceful, gorgeous serenity, when a view of the mountains opens before you and you realize that you are here, right now, in your very own version of an Ansel Adams print. Or when you look up into an inky sky speckled with stars, and are reminded of how incredibly beautiful this life is, and how lucky you are to be living it to the absolute fullest.
Here at Orange Mud, Ragnar is a favorite of ours. We love the vibe, the party, the whole enchilada. We also know how much it sucks to not be prepared. How a blister can blossom into a literal Achilles’ heel, how you can wind up cursing the darkness when the bulb on your headlamp goes out.
That’s why we’ve created this Ragnar Race Day Gear Checklist—because we want everyone to have the best possible experience. And also, because we don’t want your sweaty socks to stink up the van because you forgot a bag to stash them. Download the link here. What can we say? We love runners. Enjoy the journey!