By Keeli Parkey
Erwin will once again be the site of a unique obstacle course for fitness enthusiasts when the 2nd Annual Nolichucky Triple Threat takes place next month. Coordinated by the Unicoi County Chamber of Commerce, the event is designed to challenge the most enthusiastic competitor.
“This is the only event of its kind that begins on the churning whitewater of the Nolichucky River and finishes with a trail run just steps from the acclaimed Appalachian Trail,” Chamber Executive Director Amanda Delp told The Erwin Record. “With the growing popularity of obstacle course racing challenges across the country, last year the Chamber of Commerce saw a unique opportunity to coordinate the Nolichucky Triple Threat in Erwin. The Chamber’s initial vision for this event was to create a competitive adventure like no other that would utilize and showcase the county’s two major recreational anchors – the Nolichucky River and the Appalachian Trail. The phenomenal success of the event last year ensured the growth for an even larger event this year.”
The 2016 staging of the Triple Threat will begin at 4 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 27, at USA Raft where participants will enter the Nolichucky River. Using the watercraft of their choice, including either a raft, kayak or bellyak, racers will travel 1.5 miles down the river before exiting and beginning the obstacle course and timed section of the race.
After crossing the starting line for the course, racers will face obstacles designed to challenge their strength and agility. Delp said these obstacles include a sand crawl under barbed wire, water walk through, balance beam, monkey bars, tire drag and much more.
After the obstacle course, the Triple Threat continues with a 5K run back to USA Raft.
“Racers will run on Temple Hill Road to River Road where they will race alongside the Nolichucky River for a section of the race,” Delp said. “Then for the last steps of the race, participants will battle trail terrain where they will complete the run back to their final obstacle before crossing the finish line.”
The 2016 staging of the Nolichucky Triple Threat will be timed by We Run Events.
“We are happy to have Hank Brown and We Run Events work with us this year,” Delp said. “They are a great addition to the race.”
Following the race, food, vendors and entertainment will be available to race participants and their supporters.
“We want to have a festival atmosphere at USA Raft after the race,” Delp said. “We invite the competitors to bring their family and friends to enjoy the event.”
Registration for the Nolichucky Triple Threat is now open. From July 26 through Aug. 26 the entry fee is $65. On Aug. 27, the day of the race, the entry fee is $85. All registered participants will receive a free event completion T-shirt on race day.
“Last year’s event sparked national interest and we are confident that this year’s event will only continue to capture more national attention and ultimately evolve into a highly sought after event attracting competitors from across the U.S.,” Delp said.
For more information about the Nolichucky Triple Threat, call the Unicoi County Chamber of Commerce at 743-3000 or visit the website at www.nolitriplethreat.com.