Each year we spend an extended weekend camping with our friends in Eastern Oregon. Besides the usual fun in the water, an impromptu and unique relay race developed by Craig and a friend became the highlight of the entire trip. First, I’ll show some of our normal fun, letting the suspense build about what the First Annual Walton Lake Relay included.
If you can believe it, all those kids jumped in! Here’s Heidi, my sixth child.
And another. She’s an animal!
K, my fifth, found a treasure. The kids discovered these cattails were amazing fluff bombs, throwing them up into the air and when they hit the ground again, the fluff would explode.
Dragon flies were everywhere.
One of our friends picked up a couple sailboards that the kids turned into paddleboards. Balancing on a wee little board was a challenge just in itself, that many of them spent time perfecting.
With 38 people in our group, there were bound to be some bumps and bruises by the end of the trip. We had two scooter crashes and two bikes going over a bridge. K’s header over the bridge was the worst, cracking her helmet, but her skinned knee ended up being the worst injury from that ride.
This photo shows the bridge she flew off of after flying down the hill, landing 6 feet below the bridge on gravel and boulders. Bike helmets are such a good thing.
Just prior to our relay race, as we were discussing the rules and assigning events to everyone, little Lacey (our seventh child) snuck off on the sailboard to master paddling.
Now the highlight: a relay for 2 -29 person teams with age ranges from 4 through 40’s. It’s race like no other. After the first leg of scootering down the hill, next came rollerblading.
Then to a biking leg, followed by the common “run up the low” leg.
Next was a short mountain bike stint, followed by “walk with a book on the head” leg.
Our batons were water bottles, and some of the legs made it hard to carry it. The kids were creative in their problem solving though. Silas realized that he couldn’t balance a can in each hand AND carry the baton, so he found a spot for it.
Once the three-legged racers ran, the swimmers were brave, going through uncharted and obstacle strewn pathways.
After the swim came a sprint, and another biking stretch.
Another sprint came next, followed by the finale: the paddlers were blindfolded, guided only by the directions of the captains in the middle of the boat.
Our Walton Lake camping crew.