Mosquito Lake Trail Run, April 22

3 surefire signs that spring has come to Pemberton: dog poo, skunk cabbage and the Mosquito Lake trail run.

Inspired by this message in my inbox:
yay for may.
the Mosquito Lake run is April 22.
registration 930, run at 10
all proceeds to PSAR
a bit more than 10km, lots of hills, all trail

I asked Anna “just the facts” Helmer, to elaborate. After all, there’s a high likelihood that this weekend will see inordinate chocolate bingeing… Just the right time to commit to a trail run, Pemby-style.

Questions, then:

What/who sets the date? 
Mom and I set the date (usually sitting at the same kitchen table at which Slow Food Cycle Sunday was concocted). It is always roughly the same week in April.

What is the deal with the Mosquito Lake run? Give me the lowdown. Who’s in charge?
Well. Well, I think everyone involved except for mom would say she is in charge (sure sign of a benevolent dictator). The Wolf Pack usually is in charge of route marking, and PSAR (Pemberton Search and Rescue) runs the finish line, route spotting during the race, and sweep. It is a pretty hilly course, with some downright heartbreakers scattered throughout. Nice fast finish, though so no-one comes in looking too shattered. And we all feel very safe with PSAR watching out for us.

Pemberton Search and Rescue

Everyone starts arriving at 9:30am and registration goes til 10, at which point we start (after a quick talk to describe route). $15 for each runner/walker and all proceeds to PSAR. I always try to get mom to take money out for all the coffee and treats she purchases, but she never does.

When a runner finishes, they check their name off a list and after everyone seems to have come in, PSAR goes in and searches for and rescues whoever has not checked off their name. We always find everyone.

And that’s it. Home by noon. With sore legs and dirty shoes.

Mosquito Lake Run

I haven’t gone for a run in 6 months. My shoes still have November mud caked on them. Should I still enter?
I would. I do. Usually. Sometimes I chicken out. Walking is totally acceptable. In fact I have never yet actually run the entire route.

How many people turn out? Who’s going to be there (assuming I’m coming more for the social than the competitive component…)
20-40 participants.
Mosquito Lake Run

Lindsay May’s half marathon group will probably be there. We get some hot runners from Whistler. Usually 3-4 seed potato farmers who lead the walking set. Dr Lindley always rocks it. Lisa Komuro, although she is expecting, but that might not hold her back. We’ll see. John Davies, the resident Pemberton speedster.

Mosquito Lake Run

We have some that have been at every run for years. A few newbys. The local freelance writer….?????

Assuming I’m coming to kick some ass, what’s on the line? Prizes? Money? Glory? Fame?
Mostly glory – Dave Steers will probably take your picture and you’ll end up on the cover of the Question. For prizes, you can expect eggs (if the chickens laid that week), seed potatoes, marigold starts…vintage SFCS shirts….

Is it a set course? Or is it set according to the course-setters whim?
Set course, unless there is a washout the night before. But you have to keep your head up and look for the next ribbon ’cause it can get confusing up there.

Mosquito Lake Run

Is this one of an informal series of social Pemberton runs? What connects them? What and when are the others?
Mom is the local race promoter. In recent years, she has yielded control of the empire to Delores Los, who now organizes the fall Lumpy’s Epic at One Mile. Mom has retained the flag ship Canada Day run and this spring issue.
Mosquito Lake Run 2008

How many years has it been running?
12 years? Don’t quote me. We get confused.

How did it get started? What was the impetus?.
Mom wanted people to experience the trails up there. She used to spend hours and hours up there in the spring, exploring the trails. That area loses the snow so much earlier than the farm that it is like a taste of spring even though it might still be winter down below. Plus, I think she was really inspired by the Wolfes, who she would see running for miles and miles over hill and dale.

Mosquito Lake Run 2008

What makes this a quintessentially Pemberton kind of event?
Great views of Mt Currie, gnarly course, lots of socializing.

Who do we have to thank for this particular event?
Jeanette Helmer, the Wolf Pack, Pemberton Search and Rescue

Mosquito Lake Run

And what are YOUR 3 favourite things about spring in Pemberton?
Biking to work, reading outside, fresh greens from the greenhouse

(All photos by Dave Steers.)


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