Race Report: Camp Pendleton Mud Run

For the past couple of years, Raciel, Jo Nisha, and I would talk about doing the Camp Pendleton Mud Run, and for two years we always forgot to sign up until it was too late and the race sold out… which was always only a few hours after registration opened on Jan 1st. But not this year! Jo Nisha managed to sign us up as a team and we spent much of the past 6 months in excited anticipation.

I didn’t read much about the obstacles until a couple of weeks before the race and that’s when I found out:

1. There were two 6 ft walls we had to climb
2. We would have to cross a lake the size of a football field
3. The race was a 10k
4. It was hilly as hell
5. At mile 5, we’d have to run up a super steep, super slippery mud hill with a marine spraying water on you at the top

I was suddenly scurrrrred.  What the hell did I get myself into???

Fear drove Raciel and I to do much strategerizing (yes, I just made up that word) the days leading up to the race. We decided to wear tights (to protect our knees from all the crawling we’d have to do), to wear swim wear (to make showering post-race easier) and to body glide it up, like, everywhere (to prevent any chafing). Having these decisions made, made us feel much better.

Before we knew it, race day was upon us. As is customary, I was short on sleep. I managed about 4.5 hours the night before. Fiance and I left my place at a little after 6am. Camp Pendleton is only about a one hour drive away, and with a 9am start, we weren’t too worried about making the start time. Unfortunately, it took us 30 minutes just to exit the freeway (and we were just half a mile away!) AND it took another 45 minutes for us to get into the base, make it to Lake Oneil, and park. Another 5 minutes to take the shuttle. Another 10 minutes to get to the bag check area where everyone was. O M G, it took freaking FOREVER. For anyone doing this race, I’d aim to get INTO the base at 6m and not 7:30am like we did. We barely made it to the bag check area by 9am. It was a good thing that the individuals were starting first.

So, now to the good stuff!

Here we are, nice and clean :)

the GGPH at Camp Pendleton
GGPH caught by the photog on the way to the start line
GGPH caught by the photog on the way to the start line
showin' them our bib numbers
showin’ them our bib numbers

We ran as a team, and the team race started at around 9:20ish.


team start line
team start line

Within the first half mile of the race, we were sprayed by three fire hoses. It felt good to get wet because although it was a cloudy day, it was still fairly warm out. Within the first two miles we hit a few shallow river crossings and mud pits. It was fairly flat, too. We didn’t start climbing until shortly after the second mile, and it was a steady climb until after mile 5. The hills were climbable for the most part, but there were some parts where the hills were really steep… almost to the point where I felt I was climbing instead of running, trying to figure out footing n stuff.

Still smiling after cresting a particularly difficult hill
Still smiling after cresting a particularly difficult hill
mid-mud pit
mid-mud pit

After the third mile, we started hitting a few mud pits and the first wall, which wasn’t too bad to climb up thanks to the help of some marines ;) about a quarter mile after that, I got a view of the lake and instantly knew I was in trouble. The lake was only supposed to be about 5ft deep, but the instant I saw those tiny little heads bobbing in the water, I knew it was much deeper than that. It was at least 6ft deep, probably deeper. I wasn’t able to touch the floor the minute I stepped into the water and it freaked. me. OUT! I am not a strong swimming and with all the clothes we were wearing + shoes, I had a hard time moving myself in the water. Luckily, some of Jo Nisha’s friends, who had already crossed the lake, saw us, doubled back, and crossed the lake with us. Jo Nisha and I grabbed on to two of her tall guy friends who escorted us across the lake. Big thanks go out to the tall Cohen brothers, our saviors!

Getting out of the lake, I totally ate it, HARD. Banged my knee on the ground and scraped it nice n good. It really hurt!  It took a few minutes for me to shake it off, but after that we were off, reading to do more climbing. After we hit the giant slippery mud hill, we finally hit the down hill stretch. Most of it was a fairly steep mud hill, and there were some parts where we had to very carefully go down (ie. slow climbing down, finding good footing, etc). But after all of that was done, we were finally in the final stretch. We hit the final mud pit, where Fiance managed to snap a picture of us.


final mud pit
final mud pit – I LOVE Jo Nisha’s expression in this picture


mud bath!
mud bath!

After we crawled through the mud pit, we washed off a bit in the mini-showers and then linked arms with the rest of our team to cross the finish line.



crossing the Camp Pendleton Mud Run finish line
crossing the Camp Pendleton Mud Run finish line – randomly… check out that guy’s abs! nice =):::
Team GGPH, post-race
Team GGPH, post-race

Would I do the CP Mud Run again? Hell, yes! It was challenging, but it was a ton of fun. We’re definitely planning on doing it again next year. Raciel wants to do the boots division but Jo Nisha and I are SO not game for that!

We’re still waiting to finish up our disposable waterproof cameras so there are more fun pictures to come!

Up next.. update on my training. Yes… I have been training ;)

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About Sheryl

New mama, runner on the mend, crafter, DIYer, Harry Potter fanatic, dreamer, coffee guzzler, rescue mom to 3 crazy pups.

6 thoughts on “Race Report: Camp Pendleton Mud Run

  1. @Sarah – You should def do it! Just remember to register on Jan 1st, before the sun goes up =) They sold out by 7am this year.

    @Melissa – thanks, girlie! I feel super badass now =P haha =)

    @Raciel – errrm…..

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