Sunday, May 6, 2018

GORUCK Cinco de Mayo Light AAR

My oldest daughter and I signed up for the Cincinnati Cinco de Mayo GORUCK Light (Class #2644) a few months ago and participated in the event yesterday. You might be wondering – an AAR for a Light?  Yep, my blog, my choice to write what I want – LOL. This is my 3rd Light and while I’ve enjoyed them all, this one was bigger and not what you think of for a Light, thus the AAR.

TL;DR – We rucked a bunch of miles, carried heavy stuff and had a great time with a cool cadre.

We drove to Cincinnati the day before so we could rest and be ready for the event. A quick hotel breakfast and we were on our way to the start point, Fifty West Cycling, and started meeting the other ruckers. It seemed like a lot of them have done other events with each other but we were far from being the only new faces. One lady did the Indianapolis Veteran’s Day Light with us and one of the guys did the Indianapolis Bataan Tough with my son and me. Small world of people who like to do these events, it seems.

The cadre, Stephen, arrived and we checked in, did the usual gear check and safety briefing. I needed to fill out a paper waiver for my daughter as she is a minor which was new since this is her 3rd Light. In total 17 of us started the event, which was our smallest class we’ve been in. We collected the coupons the cadre stashed earlier and moved out of the parking lot to a grassy area for some PT. We did squats and leg raises while some of our team went to fill the sandbags. We had a total of one 80lb, one 60lb and 3 40lb sandbags in addition to three 4 foot PVC pipes full of dirt or sand, two 5 gallon jerry cans of water, an empty keg as a team weight, a backpack of misc things, a small shovel and of course a US flag leading the way. For those counting along at home, that’s 14 coupons for 17 people.

We moved out and did a good job rotating the coupons around though you were rarely without something to carry. Our destination was 6.5 miles away at Pattison Elementary School. We moved with purpose and only stopped once to refill hydration packs which in turn lightened the jerry cans. It was overcast and in the mid 60’s but humid so we were sweating pretty good. Hydration is key at these events and even if it is a Light you don’t want to get behind on hydration. Once we arrived cadre set out some markers in the field and we split into two team for relay races. We did buddy carries for 4 races. We won 2, lost 2. The winning team got to pick the penalty for the losing team and cadre was cool with us doing easy penalties like “Air Force pushups”, cherry pickers, hip rotations and bicep curls. It was a great laugh and kept spirits high with the fun factor.

We moved out shortly thereafter and started making our way back to the start point. We rucked through a beautiful section of Cincinnati that I’d never been to, Milton and Newtown. Some amazing houses and a few micro-breweries along the way. We eventually made it to the Little Miami Scenic Trail which was nice to get off the roads and sidewalks. This is a rails to trails pathway and was busy on a beautiful Saturday morning. We stopped once for water and bathrooms before making the final push to the start point.

When we arrived, we piled the coupons, filled the jerry cans for the 4PM Light class and cadre presented us with our patches. We did 11.3 miles in just under 6 hours. Certainly not the most I’ve rucked but it was a lot for a Light and we loved it!  I had the opportunity to meet a lot of new people and always enjoy talking with everyone while we’re there. My daughter did great and shouldered more than her fair share of the coupons. She’s a tough cookie and I saw her with the 60lb, 40lb, keg and PVC pipes. I’m proud of her beyond words as she is doing stuff at 14 that so many others would never even consider doing and she enjoys it.

This isn’t our last event and by far and I love how each one is unique. Each cadre brings their own “flavor” and style to the events. Some really focus on the PT aspect, some on the rucking and movement, some on both. The end result is the same – a good time with great people. If you’ve not done one, start with a Light and enjoy the experience. You can find events here: GORUCK Light.

Most cadre don’t like you to wear watches during the event as it is a distraction from the activity. I’m cool with that so put my Garmin in my Ruck as we were forming up. You can see the map of our route here. Not sure where the elevation change came from – we maybe did 500’ and that would be generous.

Gear List
  • ·        GORUCK Black Rucker
  • ·        CamelBak Crus 3L bladder
  • ·        Nalgene 1L bottle
  • ·        20lb GORUCK Plate
  • ·        Altra Lone Peak with Superfeet Green Inserts
  • ·        Drymax OCR ankle high socks
  • ·        Columbia Silver Ridge Convertible Pants
  • ·        Mechanix Covert Tactical Gloves

Until next time, folks.

Thanks to Jennifer Jarvis for the Welcome Party photos. Heal up and see you next time!

Random photos below.

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