The Wildflower Triathlon is held at Lake San Antonio in California, and will take place for the 31st time in May 2014.
The event has been dubbed the "Woodstock" of triathlons due to the fact it takes place in the countryside and many competitors choose to camp out or stay in motorhomes for the course of the three-day event.
The weekend consists of four types of triathlons. These include the WF2, long-course triathlon, Olympic-course triathlon and mountain-bike triathlon.
The event has been summed up in the three words of hot, hilly and hard because of its uneven and gruelling course.
It usually attracts more than 7,500 participants in the various races and as many as 30,000 spectators annually, making it one of the largest triathlon events in the world.
On the upside for campers, they can cycle a short distance to the transition, while hotel-stayers in the surrounding areas can expect some long commutes, while also missing out on the great atmosphere this event has to offer.
May 1-4, 2014
The long-course triathlon involves a 1.2-mile swim, a 56-mile cycle, and a 13.1-mile run on the Saturday.
The Olympic-course triathlon is made up of a 1.5k swim, a 40k cycle and a 10k run on the Sunday.
The mountain-bike course consists of a 250m swim, a 9.7-mile cycle and a two-mile run on the Saturday.
The WF2 consists of a 1.2-mile swim, a 56-mile cycle, a 13.1-mile run on the Saturday, followed by a 1.5k swim, a 40k cycle and a 10k run on the Sunday.
The swim takes place in the cool, crisp and clean waters of Lake San Antonio.
The cycle consists of an up-and-down adventure with your heart rate matching the peaks and troughs of the course layout of hills, hills and more hills.
The run loops up and over the park, involving several unforgivingly large hills that need to be ascended again.
A large proportion of athletes end up walking stages of the run, following the hardship of the cycle and the difficult nature of the run.
Ironically it is those in the long course who tend to continue running throughout the entirety of the running leg, perhaps due to the majority of these individuals being highly competitive and fit racers. How to get there/Where to stay
San Francisco is the closest international airport to Lake San Antonio, with return flights currently around the €500 mark. It is advised that you either camp in a tent at the campsite or hire a motorhome for which you will need to purchase a camping pass for the number of nights you intend to stay.
Contact: Web: www.tricalifornia. com/index.cfm/Wild Flower2014-main.htm
Phone: 001 831 373-0678
Highs The unique festival atmosphere accompanying a well-organised event.
lows The seemingly never-ending hills on the cycle and running legs of the various races.