The Treadwell Tandem Run, sponsored by the Southeast Road Runners, proved an entertaining course for the community's loyalists.
Sound off on the important issues at
Twin brothers Tyler and Wesley Dinnan won Saturday's event. The race benefited the Juneau-Douglas High School cross country team.
The 5-kilometer race offered several draws for the runners, including the terrain.
"The course has two 1,200 foot sections of sand and tidal flats," race director Paul DeSloover said.
He also warned runners before the race, "There is a lot of hills throughout two 1.5-mile loops, including lots of tree roots and protruding rocks."
Pure enjoyment is another draw.
"This is definitely one of the (most fun) races of the year because it is really tough," Hunter Brown said. "It goes out on the beach and on the sand, and it has tons of hills. It's just one of those races, you know, where you are not really worried about your time and you are just enjoying the race."
Another attraction to this race is that people compete as a team.
Crimson Bears cross country coach Guy Thibodeau said, "It is not often that you get to pass your friends and teammates going the other way. That is what I used to like about out-and-back races, and it makes it a little bit more interesting."
He described the race's other qualities too.
"One thing about this race is that it is real cross country," Thibodeau said. "Sometimes the running community likes to do something a little different."
In the Treadwell Tandem race, one person in each tandem received a big letter 'R' on their race number. The big additional letter determined which person ran the right forking course on the first lap and then switched to the opposite course on the second lap, while partners did the opposite.
At one point, the loops intersected and there was a section of the trail where, as JDHS runner Katie Krehlik said, racers can give high fives.
A small group of runners got more than they bargained for when they veered off course and added extra time and distance to their race.
J.J. Lende, who is in her fourth year of competitive high school cross county said, "The race was fun, although I went a mile in the opposite direction. Other then that, (the race) went pretty good."
At the top of a rise where the runners are supposed to start heading downhill, several runners chugged right on by an orange line drawn in the trail that signified one of the course boundaries.
Instead of staying on the designated path, the unlucky handful meandered about the hillside until they realized that they were off track and rerouted their way back to the race.
Thibodeau mentioned that many of the runners enjoy the race as a warm up for other upcoming events.
"The cross-country team just uses today as a practice race, but I think it is a good prep-race for anyone who likes to do the Klondike Relay or for anybody who wants to get in some hills and get a little speed work," Thibodeau said. "These hills really do duplicate what you are going to do on the Klondike, which is a lot of hills."
Of all the reasons to run Saturday, 3-year-old Kaelon Bunton said his favorite part was "running fast."
Although the youngest of the 56 racers may not have finished with everyone else, his honest opinion is what keeps people coming out to participate in these races all year long.