In what’s a completely unique event, and in fact the first of its kind here in Australia, it’s safe to say the inaugural Big Foot Snow Trail Marathon was a massive hit! Held in one of Australia’s most popular alpine ski resorts, Falls Creek, this event takes ‘trail running’ to a whole new level, and combines two of our favourite things here at ioMerino – running and snow! Here we catch up with Race Ambassador, Jen Brown, to hear all about race day. Not only is Jen a massive trail running fan, she’s also a massive ioMerino fan, so was decked out from head to toe in her favourite high performance thermal layers!
Written by Snow Trail Race Ambassador and Owner at SpartaChicks, Jen Brown.
“I got a call late one night asking if I would be an Ambassador for a brand new event, the Big Foot Snow Trail marathon. Mel, one of the race organisers, said to me “think it over and get back to me in a few days”. “I don’t need to think it over – I’m in” I responded instantaneously. While I’ve hiked, climbed and camped on snow, the prospect of covering 42km through the stunning Victorian Alps wearing snowshoes during Australia’s first snow trail race was an opportunity and experience I wasn’t about to pass up.
Race day wasn’t without its challenges including a couple of white-outs, navigational issues which meant we took the “scenic route” (well, it would have been scenic if it wasn’t in a white-out) and sadly it wasn’t my day and I ultimately withdrew mid-race. But it still stands out as one of my all-time favourite events; the unique nature of the race, the quiet isolation, the snow, the caring volunteers at the aid-stations who brought me hot chocolate and looked after our every whim and the stunning scenery in the back country of Falls Creek. It is such an extraordinarily unique and special event in a magnificent part of our country and I can’t wait to return next year.
As for gear, I was top-to-toe in ioMerino (both during my on-snow training sessions and on race day) and it was perfect. While I will change how I train for the race next year, I know I made the right gear choices and ioMerino was an integral part of it. It handled both the cool, overcast conditions (it was -6 when we started at 6am – yes, that’s a minus) as well as my level of exertion throughout the race (going up hills in deep snow wearing snowshoes is hard work!). For the record I wore the Chaser Leggings (under a pair of running tights) and on my torso, I wore a black Altitude Crew long sleeve top, red Altitude Active Tee over that and (from time to time depending on the conditions and how hard I was working) the black Chaser High Performance Hoodie. This ensemble was completed by not one but two Altitude Neck Tubes (one in red and the other in black) and a pair of the Snow Socks. And while my day didn’t unfold the way I wanted, I’m already looking forward to returning to the event next year and my ioMerino gear will be right there alongside me (literally)!”