Fresh Air Hard Knox - Call for volunteers
September 20 and the Fresh Air Hard Knox 12k is fast approaching and many more volunteers are required to act as a course marshal. So if you are not running or otherwise volunteering, please sign up. If your significant other is not running, sign them up and then tell them you have done so! If you have a friend you have been trying to convince to take up running or to join the club, persuade them to sign up and come see how much fun it is to participate in a race and hang out with positive people. It is so uplifting to be out on a race course and see the happy faces of those participating, working hard and having fun. After the race they may join the runners and volunteers for food and refreshments and a chance at door prizes (although they may have to listen to a lot of bragging or complaints about this injury or that injury). One can signup online by going here.
Kettle Valley Railway Run
Forty plus walkers and runners participated in the annual Kettle Valley Railway run on Saturday, August 8, 2015. This was followed up with food and refreshments. Some of us undid all the benefits of all that calorie burning effort - too many cookies! The weather was great and, as usual, the comradeship second to none. No known injuries and no bears.
If you are looking for a fun race prior to the Fresh Air Hard Knox Challenge consider running in the Kelowna Wine Country Half Marathon on September 6, 2015. A number of club members participated last year and had nothing but good things to say about the experience (and all the wine). For more information go here.
Fresh Air Hard Knox Challenge - Race or Volunteer
This could be you!
The Kelowna Running Club is proud to sponsor the final race of The Canadian Tire Road Race Series and the first race of the Starting Block Cross-Country Series, all wrapped up in one! The Club is replacing the old Peak to Beak 18 kilometer race with the new and exciting Fresh Air Hard Knox Challenge 12k and the race results will be counted in both the road race and the cross-country race series.
The route starts at the entrance to Knox Mountain Park in the north end of Kelowna at the end of Ellis Street and includes a lakeshore run to the Delta Grand and back and then to Paul’s Tomb (one of the best trails in the Kelowna area). Then a fast finish along Poplar Point Road, Downhill and then flat, back to the start.
There are also races within the race! The first we are calling the Knox Grind. After returning from the Delta Grand runners will race up the Apex trail to the first lookout. The fastest male and female runners within this timed section will win Mizuno runners generously donated by Fresh Air Experience/Concepts. The second timed race within the race is the Miracle Mile, a flat mile along Poplar Point Road. Prizes for this section provided by EK Grill.
Following the race, participants will enjoy a free BBQ sponsored by EK Grill. For a small charge your friends and family may also enjoy this treat.
So please join us on Sunday, September 20, 2015. To register go here. You may pick up your race package on Saturday, September 19, at Fresh Air Concepts on Groves Avenue or at the race start on Sunday.
If you are not running, please consider volunteering. Select your own position here. Join the runners after for refreshments and chances at door prizes.
If you are new to road running in and around Kelowna, you may be asking yourself where is a good place to run. While many great routes are run on our early Saturday morning club runs, here are a number of suggestions for the rest of the week. This list is by no means exhaustive, but do represent a good sampling of great places to run. These suggestions encompass routes that have great scenery and/or limited vehicle traffic. Not all of the roads have much of a shoulder so, as always, run facing traffic and stay alert.
The most popular running route is the Mission Park Greenway. This gravel packed route follows the Mission Creek from Lakeshore Road upstream 16 kilometers. It is a gentle rise, at least for the first 12 kilometers. The last 4 kilometers encompass some stairs. If looking for a scenic run that is slightly longer than 6 kilometers, park in the lot along the creek at the end of Hollywood Road South and run upstream to the stairs and back. Gorgeous and peaceful.
A route that encompasses running and sightseeing is the Kettle Valley Railway. To commence your run at the start of the railway, drive up KLO to McCulloch and follow McCulloch out of the city over KLO Creek and watch for signs directing you to Kettle Valley Railway. This is very flat, over gravel packed road and wooden train trestles. You even get to run through a couple of tunnels and the view back towards Kelowna is fantastic.
Another great route is along Valley Road in the Glenmore district. The lower portion of Valley Road has a separate running/biking path and most of the remaining suggested route has a bike path along the shoulder of the road. Follow Valley Road up from Summit Drive to Curtis, right on Curtis to Sexsmith, left on Sexsmith to Mail, then right on Longhill back to Valley and left back to the beginning. This would be approximately 11 kilometers. To shorten the run to about 8 kilometers, park at one of the strip malls on Kane and run to Valley and turn left and use the previous directions. For the most part the hills on this route are moderate, although the run down Longhill is a little longer and steeper.
For a run through the orchards of South East Kelowna, park at the junction of KLO, McCulloch and East Kelowna Road. Run down East Kelowna Road to Reid, then up Reid to Pooley, left on Pooley to Bemrose, up to Reekie and then straight down Reekie through to and down McCulloch back to the start. There are limited shoulders on the road, but traffic is light, except on McCulloch, where there is a bike path. There is a short, steep uphill on Reid and the last part of the run down McCulloch is a steep downhill. Distance is just under 7 kilometers.
There are a few routes out of City Park in downtown Kelowna. There is parking at City Park (free on weekends and holidays). Some runners turn right at the lake and run along the lake front past the Kelowna Yacht Club, along the boardwalk through the Rotary Marshes to Sunset Drive. A return from here would result in a 4 kilometer run. To extend that run to over 6.5 kilometers, turn left on Sunset to Manhatten, right on Manhatten to Ellis and left on Ellis to the entrance to Knox Mountain Park.
Others turn left at the lake in City Park, pass under the highway, run up Lake to Abbott and follow Abbott. At the end of Abbott you can turn right on Cedar to Walnut, follow Walnut to Watt and run to the popular Gyro Park. A turn around part way through Gyro Park will result in an 8 kilometer run. A good portion of Abbott has a separate running/biking path and the rest of Abbott has a bike path. Very flat and limited traffic.
Finally, for a run in West Kelowna start at the junction of Highway 97 and Campbell Road and follow Campbell Road to Bendick. The hills are moderate, the traffic light and there is a bike path on Campbell Road. If you turn around at the end of Bendick, the total run would be just under 6 kilometers. Continuing past Bendick on the trail along a lake to the parking lot would extend this to just over 8 kilometers. Continuing beyond the parking lot to Sunnyside would extend the run to almost 10 kilometers.
If you are interested in trail running you can obtain trail bike maps from Fresh Air Experience/Concepts at either one of their Kelowna locations. Just watch out for the bikes!
B.C. Athletics recently awarded the Kelowna Running Club the provincial championship for the 8k distance for 2016 and 2017. This will be the Fresh Air Midsummer 8k, to be held in early July each year. This championship race is guaranteed to attract several elite runners.