To the naked eye, it probably appeared to be cold and miserable outside.
But despite battling through the elements to finish, it appeared that the 330-plus participants were pleased during the inaugural Trestle Trek Half Marathon, 10K, 5K at the Wadhams to Avoca Trail.
“When I woke up at 3:30 a.m. (Saturday) morning and saw snow outside, I panicked because my wife and I were out here late (Friday) afternoon and marked the whole trail with mile markers and it was all covered with snow,” Yale cross country coach Greg Whitican said.
“But when I got here (Saturday) morning we had a lot of volunteer support and we made sure to announce to everyone the areas that might be icy. When the half marathon finished and I got positive feedback from notable runners in our area, that was good. They said it was great.”
The event will help support the Yale cross country team and also Port Huron Northern pole vaulter Mackenzie Shell.
Yale was well represented in the 10K and 5K events. Andrew Vincent was the winner of the 10K (42:50.9) and Jeffrey Matese won the 5K (21:51.6).
The half marathon took participants out to McLain Road and back to the finish line not far from Avoca Elementary School.
The winner of that event was 2014 Port Huron Northern graduate Ty Dickinson, who finished in just more than 1 hour and 23 minutes (1:23:48.1).
“I’ve been training hard with a good group of guys here and at Oakland University,” Dickinson said. “I put in some miles and today I did it like a normal distance run. I dressed warm. I wasn’t going to dress like I was out here to race. The footing wasn’t too bad even with the snow. I’ll have to do it again.”
Not far from Dickinson stood Dave and Ashley Dingess of Flat Rock. The father and daughter duo made the hour and a half drive to be part of the event and left with smiles on their faces.
“We weren’t expecting snow but I always look forward to running together,” Dave Dingess said. “Normally, she pushes me. It was fantastic today and we will do it again.”
“The key is having a good running partner,” Ashley Dingess added. “You have to have the attitude that it’s worth it.”
Moments after finishing the half marathon, Croswell-Lexington girls cross country coach Lisa Shaw stood off to the side and watched as the other participants crossed the finish line.
Like most of them, Shaw wasn’t expecting to face snowy conditions but brought with her a smile and a good attitude.
“Anytime you can sleep in your own bed and only have to drive a half an hour to run a half marathon it’s great,” she said. “Anything that supports local runners like the Yale cross country team is good.”
Contact Joseph Hayes at (810) 989-6268 or at email@example.com. Follow him on twitter @jhayes1136.