Jun 152012

This fall, a group of Donner Party wannabes embark on an adventure to test the will of their bodies, their minds, and their sanity. But most likely it will validate their INSANITY. (And I am one of the insane). We will be participating in the  Tough Mudder Obstacle Challenge at Lake Tahoe on Saturday, September 22, 2012. Oh God, what have I gotten myself into?



This Tough Mudder is approximately 10 to 12 miles long with 25+ military style obstacles to overcome. There will be walls to climb, tunnels to crawl through, and ropes to maneuver around/over/under that are among some of the things our group will try to conquer. And since the course is built around Lake Tahoe, this group of misfits and survivors will have more than enough chances to acquaint themselves with the freezing temperatures of the second deepest lake in the United States.

For an interactive map of the course and the obstacles, click here.


This year’s Norcal #1 Mudder Run will be held at the Northstar California Resort in Lake Tahoe. It will have approximately 27 crazy obstacles. In addition to the above mentioned obstacles on the course, the insane mudders will experience running through fire, sliding down a hill into a cold pond, balancing on a 2 x 4 board to get across a body of water, as well as carrying a log up a ski slope and then trek down without loosing their footing. All this and they still haven’t gotten through half the course! The event is called Tough MUDDER so there will be plenty of it as they make their way through mud filled trenches, crawl through submerged pipes and duck underneath barbwire only 8 inches above the ground and muddy dirt in their faces.

Out of all of the many pains our group will go through during this event, the one that has me the most nervous is the “Artic Enema.” This obstacle is a mixture of assorted icy liquids in a large bin in which you have to jump into and submerge yourself under a barrier to get to the other side. Your basically diving into a pool of ice. BRRRR!!!


 And to add insult to injury, you’ll have to get past these (left) to get to the finish line. Yes, that’s electrified wires with up 10,000 volts of electricity. I don’t care if your the biggest, baddest, or strongest guy out there, 10,000 volts can knock you on your ass. And with 10 – 12 miles of water, ice, and snow all over your body, there’s nowhere to cover up to protect yourself from the biggest shock you will ever experience. Sorry, touching those 9 volt batteries to your tongue like you did when you were a kid will not prepare you for “Electroshock Therapy.”.

One thing that will be essential to our survival is teamwork. The creators of the event stress teamwork and camaraderie both on the course and off of it. Teammates will be needed to get each member over the 12 foot walls, help you get over your fears of jumping 20 feet into the lake, and push you when you feel like giving up. The event is not a race so getting to the finish the fastest doesn’t really mean anything. Mudders make sure no one is left behind. They help others even if they are not in the same team.

As a member if this rag tag group, I will experience the pain, sweat, and fatigue when I cross the finish line many miles from where I started. This will be the longest and most difficult event I will ever attempt. I was never known to be a long distance runner even when I was in my best shape many years ago. I have a long way to get my body in the shape I need it to be in. But I have faith in myself and especially in my team to help me get across that finish line.

This was a brief overview of what we expect to go through. In the next few months, I’ll try to post about our training progress and hopefully we’ll have some footage at the event and maybe some post celebration activity. I know I’ll celebrate with more than the beer they hand you at the end of the race!!

Stay tuned for the team’s preparation details and path to conquer this high altitude Mudder Run! Thank you for reading. Enjoy!




  1. max says:

    thanks for information.

  2. Tina says:

    Wow, Lyell, as your 3rd and youngest big sister, I’m really proud of you. You can do this! the whole course in itself is scary to me! LOL I’m sure you and the rest of your friends/team will do awesome! Lots of luck in training and on the day of!

    Oh by the way, can you teach Leilani how to write/compose an interesting read such as this? I’ve been bragging to her about your blog and how it’s very enjoyable! thanks! and thank you for placing my link on your site! I appreciate it! love ya!

    1. cabana9 says:

      Thanks Sis!

      Umm, me teach Leilani? She could teach me! Ms AP Honors student and University of Hawaii!! LOL!

      1. Tina says:

        you’re welcome! yeah Lani is hella book smart but she asks me for help composing emails. I’ll re-direct her to this blog. it’s always an interesting and fun read. =)

  3. Juanita says:

    Nice Job Lyell.