If you hate running, this half-marathon is for you.
The second annual Egan is Lava: A to Beer Fun Half-Marathon is back and set to run between Friday, July 15 and Sunday, July 24. But, this isn’t a typical half-marathon that requires months of training to finish it: just the willpower and creativity to find a way from either Devil’s Club Brewing Co. or Forbidden Peak Brewery to the other, taking any route or transportation you deem worthy — with the caveat that Egan Drive is completely off limits.
Though a week seems like a long time given to devise a way around the 13.1-mile distance that the state highway runs between Devil’s Club Brewing Co. and Forbidden Peak Brewery, that’s part of the fun, said Evan Wood, a co-founder of Devil’s Club Brewing.
“Part of the beauty of it is that it’s as unstructured as possible for people, and it’s not scheduled on a specific day so the roll of the dice on a good weather day is much higher and people can do it on their own schedules.”
And for some of the several hundred participants last year, they needed all the time they could get. Wood said last year one group spent two days walking the ridge line of the mountains hovering above Juneau to conquer the challenge. Others biked from the end of North Douglas and one participant even kayaked across Auke Bay before eventually swimming the rest of the way until they landed at the other brewery.
“That’s the most exciting part — to see how out of the box people would get and we want to encourage that this year,” he said. “It’s just such a Juneau event — just give the community a little bit of fun and outdoors to have and they’ll run wild and make it their own and get crazy with it. We’re super stoked for this year.”
This year, the event will hand out hand-curated trophies along with their awards given for things like the longest route, most creative transportation method and most methods of transportation. The event also teamed up with Juneau Bike Doctor who donated a bike package to be given at random to one participant of the event.
Ken Hill, owner of the Juneau Bike Doctor, said he’s excited for the event to bring people together and enjoy the outdoors in whatever way they decide to do the race. He and his friends plan to do the event on their e-bikes.
“It’s something we wanted to become involved in because I like the social aspect of being on a bike and so something like this falls in line with something we want to do with the community,” he said. “This event goes hand in hand with local businesses working with one another and getting people to come together.”
Though this is only the second year of the event, Wood said the organizers are hoping more and more people show up this year to keep its momentum going into years beyond. He said he’s already heard that there are whispers going around that groups are already compiling the perfect routes and transportation methods to wow the competition.
Know & Go
What: Egan is Lava: A to Beer Fun Half-Marathon
When: Runs between Friday, July 15 and Sunday, July 24, participants can begin at any time.
Where: Any route beside Egan Drive that goes from Devil’s Club Brewing Co. to Forbidden Peak Brewery. Participants can start at either brewery.
• Contact reporter Clarise Larson at firstname.lastname@example.org or at (651)-528-1807. Follow her on Twitter @clariselarson