The September Ruck Event was a good ole fashion game of capture the flag. See the Pre-Blast here for the rules and setup of the game. Each team has provided their own perspective of the event, including planning and prep, “game time” activities, and the post-game show. Enjoy the lifetime of memories garnered from this spectacular event.
Wanna jump around? Here are links to each team’s account of the night.
Team: Thunder Thigh Gaps – Team 6
PAX: Huckleberry, Tupac, Gap, Jimmy Dean (Captain)
After going over the mission of F3 and the 5 core principles, we planted our flag for the event and took a picture of it. We began rucking away from our flag and at 7:30pm, YHC’s phone lit up with the maps of the other teams’ flags.
We decided to stop and plot all of the flag locations and then determine our best route to maximize how many flags we could capture. After a few minutes, we had decided a route and Gap became our nav for the evening.
Our team weight was 30# of dumbells inside of an extra backpack, which Tupac carried first. We rotated throughout the evening with Gap carrying the load more than anyone else because he wanted to.
We made great time capturing the first 4 flags and almost gave up on the 5th one we captured (Northview), but one last lap around the building proved to be worth it.
Our search for the 6th flag would be our last and was not captured since team 3 failed to mark correctly on the map where their flag was located.
We had to haul it back to Inside the Five to make the time hack and despite YHC’s knee and Huckleberry’s hip, we made it only a few minutes after the cut off.
After the NOR, COR & COT, we headed back to some much needed refreshments and calculated our average age was 49.5. Clearly the oldest grouping, we were glad to be in 2nd place!
The 213 Regulators (aka Team 5)
Mickey, The Hoff, Froman
The 213 Regulators kicked off the CTF Ruck evening with a planning meeting set for 6:45 @ Sodbusters.
The Hoff, needing a carb boost, showed up an hour early to fuel up on a basket of tots
Promptly at 6:45 PM Mickey and Froman rolled in. It was clear that the Regulators were a team of destiny when The Hoff emerged from Sodbusters wearing the same grey pant/black shirt ensemble as the rest of the posse. Totally unplanned, like matching personalized license plates.
With the report that Hoff’s healthy bucket of tots was spoiled by the cloud of vape in Sodbuster, the 213 decided to head over to section 5 to plan for the evening.
It was decided that the flag would be planted to minimize the need to double back, as our team was starting near the middle of the battle field. We headed for the southwest corner of section 5. Planting our flag at the furthest point from the most sections ensured that we could work our way inwards towards the finish line.
We chose to place the flag along the west side of TamoShanter, hoping the building would be a natural obstacle to the majority of teams that would approach from the east. Our initial placement proved to be outside of the semi-circle, so we moved northward until we were inside the zone.
At 7:30 PM we started to receive texts from the other teams with their map locations. The Hoff took the team weight, while Mickey grabbed Froman’s ruck. This freed Froman to map out the locations while on the move. We quickly chose our first target, deciding to move towards sector 6. While en route, the team planned out remaining moves. We would move east, 6,7, and 8 then sweeping back for 4,2,1 and 3. Our own flag was 5, and we decided to forget about 9 and 10.
Target number one (Flag 6) proved to be a challenge. Not for us, but for team 6, who not only did not activate their glow sticks, but also left them in the package.
Once 6 was secure, the Regs moved swiftly towards Flag 7. On the way we speculated whether we could follow the river under the highway, possibly saving 20-30 minutes. To our surprise, when we arrived at 7 we learned that the new path, while incomplete, gave us easy access to our route to Flag 8. We also found a great place to hang out if you are a raccoon.
Approaching the target area for Flag 8, we split up to cover the SCC parking lot. Luckily Team 9 was at the Flag and made it a simpler task. After a quick photo, we headed back west towards Flag 4. Team 9 split off as we were westbound on Monroe. Apparently their intel told them there was a Flag in Marino’s Beverage Depot. (Pray for Modell)
We quickly arrived on the grounds of Northview HS, but Flag 4 would prove to be the demise of the 213. After having quickly triangulated the location of the X, the Regs made several laps of the school, tennis courts, hill, woods, field, Sleepy Hollow cul de sacs, etc. 40 minutes of searching, and nothing to show for it. We decided to cut our losses and move to Grove Bel for the next bogey.
This one proved easy to find and we quickly moved on to the next Flag.
Heading north on Winding Way, we were stumped when we reached he dead end and no flag. With the help of an intoxicated neighbor, we found a path (not really) through some briars and into Dauber’s parent’s backyard. Thankfully we were not detected by the senior Floyd. Moving stealthily through the yard, the flag was in sight.
As we moved away and south towards Erie St, we cursed the lost 40 minutes from the earlier search at NV. We would make it back, but not with enough time to grab the last flag. Our plan to capture all flags except 9 and 10 thwarted by our inability to locate #4.
We covered 10 miles in 3 hours and had an outstanding time.
Mickey again showed that he is a machine, carrying the team weight (aka airplane neck pillow, aka Bulgarian sex pillow) 75-80% of the night.
The Hoff displayed his knowledge of the anatomy by again proving that the sphincter is the smartest muscle in the body with it’s ability to know the difference between liquid and gas (thankfully).
And Froman again proved that age should not be a factor. It was, but it shouldn’t.
The Last Temptation of Modell
This adventure began long before a single flag was planted. Through a bizarre twist of fate, Chapo and YHC were placed on the same team. Fate? Possibly. Destiny? Could be. A really bad fucking idea? Absolutely. Gasoline meet matches. Dumpster meet fire. This party didn’t have a chance of making it past the first bar and grill in sector #9. Through divine intervention, Modell was placed on our team to light the way. Because let’s face it; Modell was the only hope of keeping this bourbon-fueled freight train on the tracks.
I don’t know if Chapo and I should have been concerned, flattered or offended by the multiple “Good lucks” Modell got prior to the event. I also know that if he had a dollar for every time someone said “Hopefully those guys don’t corrupt you!” Modell would be on a beach somewhere sipping drinks with umbrellas in them for the rest of his life. Maybe that just meant that Chap and YHC are a lot of fun. Yeah, that’s it. That’s the ticket.
The team began with the all important task of selecting a team name. Elegant handles like Flagstaff Infection and 3 Poles:1 Flag gave way to the less couth Sweaty Pole Grabbers and Muppet Fuckers (that came from somewhere deep in Chapo’s brain). There was limited agreement on a name, so Trinity settled it by anointing us The Muppet Fuckers. Chapo, I love you, but you need therapy–and a court order to stay 500 feet away from puppet shows at all times.
This is a little different than the pre-rucks many of you are used to. This was more of a pre-ruck pregame. This may shock readers, but our ruck may have started at that bottom of a bottle of Basil Hayden’s bourbon. In truth, there’s really no “maybe” about it. It did. Two glasses of liquid gold and half an episode of Seinfeld later, the gruesome twosome made its way to the parking lot of Root Inc. to meet up with the final piece of the puzzle–the one and only Modell.
As Modell and I loaded up the trunk with rucks and a team weight, Chapo exchanged insults and obscene gestures with a variety of participants. This escalated to multiple wrestling matches with unwitting and at times, unwilling partners (Colonel).
After Chapo finished his personal version of Survivor Series, we hopped in the car to plant our pole (that’s flagpole, you sick bastards) at Arbor Hills Junior High. At AHJHS, we placed our flag dead center where it would be easy for all to see. We also placed some customized artwork alongside the flag for people to gaze upon as they basked in the majesty of old glory. And by artwork, I mean a picture of a large penis that said, “You found our pole!”
At 19:30, team captains exchanged map pics so that teams could set off on the great adventure. Upon receipt of these locations, team Muppet Fuckers (damn, that is ridiculous) plotted a course for success. First order business? Find nearby flag #10. Surprisingly, team MF made great time to location #10. Modell seemed to know the exact location of the flag before we even left AHJHS. Apparently, it was located in playground of a park that he likes to frequent. Not sure what that’s all about, but Chap and I figured it was best not to ask. Anyway, we made great time, took a selfie with the flag, and moved on.
Now at this point, numbers were a bit of a blur. However, we knew that somewhere over by Marino’s Beverage Center, there was another flag–and liquor. Again, the team did a halfway decent job of navigating to the outer reaches of Sylvania Country Club where allegedly there was a flag.
Unable to find the flag on the outskirts, team MF ventured into SCC. Apparently, walking around the grounds of a country club without permission is frowned upon. And apparently the lady working at the club that night was a bitch (respectfully of course). She didn’t find the humor in us walking the grounds in the dark. I believe her exact words were: “This is private property and you’re trespassing.” Whatever. So we left and immediately upon leaving stumbled upon the flag that we had been missing.
As we left, we also happened upon Mickey who gave us some key insight into where another nearby flag resided. Armed with this fresh intelligence, we did what any smart team would do–headed to the liquor store.
After being threatened with legal action, Chapo and YHC thought it best to relieve the stress of the moment with alcohol. As he did most of the night, Modell nervously laughed, smiled an uneasy smile and kept his distance while we loaded up on vodka and bourbon.
Once the Marino’s pit stop was completed, we acted upon the intelligence provided by Mickey and headed down the newly formed walking path alongside Burger King. This path led us to a flag located directly under US 23. Team MF then proceeded to walk along the path assuming that it would take us over the creek and into Sylvania proper. Wrong. As we approached the creek the bridge disappeared. Actually the construction wasn’t done. For a few moments, we thought of fording the creek. Then we thought, “That’s fucking stupid.”
Dejected, we turned around and took the long way into the city. However, before our departure, we we felt it was important to mark our territory. So we gathered a bunch of stones and made them into a three foot long penis. It was our hope that every other team would use this stone penis to point them in right direction. Boing! Upon completing the phallic way point, team MF was fully engorged and ready to plow into Sylvania.
So we rucked to Northview High School in hopes of finding our next flag. We encountered Colonel’s team on Convent Drive. Initially they were a few feet in front of us. That was until Chapo started tossing insults like hand grenades. Oddly enough, Team 7 put a lot of distance in between the two teams. And “Poof,” they were gone.
As we arrived at Northview, we were confounded by our inability to locate the flag. We dipped into the outlying neighborhoods, followed the creek and scoured the hill. Team MF was definitely MF’ing whoever placed this flag. Just as all was lost, Chapo stumbled upon the little bastard tucked away behind the band room. At this point, we decided that in order to make our 22:30 deadline, we needed to hustle back to Modell’s car at Root.
A moment about Modell’s car. Modell is the proud owner of what I would guess to be a 2011 Toyota Camry. While I’m sure it was a beauty when it was new, the Toyota has seen better days. It’s missing a mirror on the passenger side and a hubcap. No big deal. Cars don’t improve with age. Where shit got a little sideways was when Modell stated that his car was easily worth $10,000 because it was a Toyota. And this is where things got ridiculous. As one could imagine, the other two members of Team MF called bullshit. What ensued was one of the most idiotic and spirited debates about a 7 year old piece of shit that I have ever been a part of. Yes Modell. I said it was a piece of shit.
But the piece of shit did get us from point A to B successfully. While at AHJHS, we picked up our flag, lights and giant penis picture. Tears were shed. Hugs given out. We waxed poetically about our giant rock penis. I think we all learned a little bit about ourselves that night. And poor Modell learned about a lot of things–many of them are illegal in Ohio. Trinity said it best about Modell afterwards: “That dude had a funny look in his eyes after the ruck. Like he’d walked into something he wasn’t supposed to see…and he couldn’t tell anyone about it.” Amen.
It’s now been a month since the ruck. Modell has spent the previous weeks in intense therapy as part of an outpatient program at the Betty Ford Hospital. His psychiatrist expects a full recovering.
Team Brute Force (Team 10)
Dauber, Brute, Splinter
Splinter and Brute car pooled it to downtown Sylvania to pick up Dauber from Reeb and head to our starting point. We thought it was a great idea to split up and after endex, carpool back to Clayton Fischer Park and avoid ubering or too much driving back and forth. (foreshadowing). Lots of youth gang discussions, underage drinking and waxing nostalgic of great childhood memories by Brute and Dauber on the way to our destination. You could tell it was going to be a fun and laid back evening. Brute stated that he thought we were turning just past the AutoZone and after turning past O O O, O’reily’s, we were nearly to the park. We parked in a lot adjacent to Sylvania Area Family services which appeared to be HOPPING for what was no doubt a wild Saturday night. (We were definitely way cooler with our backpacks, sandbags, glowsticks, and sausage party).
After getting situated and a final gear check, we moseyed over to the playground and found a perfect spot to plant our flag surrounded by 3 trees. YHC confidently tore open the glow stick and cracked it like a pro, pretending to know what he was doing. Brute followed suit and we began game planning our route for the evening. After snapping our a picture of Dauber holding the sandbag and sending it to the team we proceeded to mark our map with X’s from the other teams. At the stroke of 7:30pm we headed south towards team #9’s flag.
Our coupon was a 30lb sandbag that was made from a 60lb goruck bag to make it easy to carry and pass around. Brute and Dauber started off on the bag while YHC held and checked the map as if there was much to look at 2 minutes into the event. We discussed how much we would be eating at the conclusion of the event and also how much food was packed for the GrowRuck / Frog. Spirits were high and we were keeping a fast yet comfortable pace towards #9 flag. After risking our lives running through some light pebbles near some construction barrels, we spotted team #9 making their way North up Whiteford. They were moving in standard single file cover formation with Modell in the lead, followed by Chapo, and Belding with his signature front piggy of their coupon. We exchanged “pleasantries” from across the road and wished each other luck.
Based upon the X on the map we thought that the flag was either at Hill View Elementary or Arbor Hills Jr. High school. We cut through the Hill View Parking Lot, waved to some hoodlums tearing up the basketball court and proceed through with our headlamps and sandbags, looking badass of course. We cut through the woods, over to Arbor Hills and spotted a couple making their way onto the track. YHC claimed to have seen the gentleman pocketing a glowstick but turned out it likely just drugs. There was no time for headlocking so we proceeded around the building until we spotted the Belding mobile and the flag nearby. Team #9 was very thoughtful and left us a trace of Chapo’s nether region and some encouraging words. We snapped the 2nd picture and proceed to Team #8’s flag. Side note, YHC had yet to carry the coupon except for lifting it out of the trunk of Brutes car which, not even confidient that he did that.
As we approached Team #8’s flag location we saw another team burst out of the SCC woods and sprint across Monroe St. in a blaze. Forced waves were exchanged and everyone at this point was focused on the task at hand. We circled around the front grounds of Sylvania Country Club with no flag to be seen and we started to get a bit restless. After weaving in and out of the golf carts, we were about to cut our losses and proceed to Team #7’s flag, when on our way out of the area, we stumbled over Team #8’s. And by stumbled YHC means accidently and barely saw a flag that was “lit” up my maybe the dimmest glow stick that we’ve ever encountered. To the point where calling it a Glow stick is a stretch and it would come to no surprise that this was Team #8’s flag plant as it was likely shenanigans being done to gain an advantage over the other teams. Additionally the flag plant was also brining some heat from the SCC grounds security who ran into Team #9 sauced up and stammering over by the pool and threatened to call the cops (Truth nuggets). We snapped a picture and proceed on, to Team #7’s flag. Brute and Dauber finally allowed YHC some time on the coupon at this point although not for too long as we wanted to keep a decent pace. The X on the map for Team #7 seemed to indicate a spot in the middle of 475 which seemed outside the confines of the rules however we thought we’d investigate none the less. After turning down the newly installed walking path and discussing, yet resisting the temptation to “Have It Our Way.”, we made our way down to discover a the flag along with an extension ladder, a bucket of caulk, 1 glove, and some colorful graffiti. Dauber and Brute posed for this one and we proceeded to take the path further towards Harroun Rd. We made it about 50 yards before realizing the path / bridge is not yet complete (thank goodness for headlamps), and we doubled back to drop off the side of the path and connect to the Flower Hospital walking path.
At this point so texts were flying back and forth with accusations of faulty flag placement and tempers were flaring. F-bombs, mom jokes, and everything in between seemed to be fair game. Then there was Team #10, un-phased and laser focused to get to our next destination, while avoiding bullshit sprinkler systems in front of Flower Hospital which YHC is convinced are on 24/7/365! We proceed down Harroun and over to Brint towards Flag #6 which was under heavy scrutiny about its private and not poorly lit placement (certainly team #8 could not be complaining about this). We turned down Wickford drive towards Sylvan Elementary school and here is where things went horribly wrong for Team #10. Respecting the rules and without the use of google maps, we turned too quickly and found ourselves in the middle of apartment complexes. After lumbering our way through the courtyard we decided to cut around the backside and through the Sylvan Elementary parking lot. Unfortunately we ran into a chainlink fence which we all hurdled like collegiate track athletes (truth nugget). If memory serves we may have discovered a restroom here and proceed onward. After cutting through the Sylvan Elementary school parking lot we noticed another unidentified rucking team making their way out of the neighborhood where Team #6’s flag must have been in. In hindsight that team must have been lost and coming from nowhere because we ended up walking about 10 minutes the wrong direction and then doubled back, only to stumble across Trinity, Ozzie, Pixar, and Mayor (Team 7). They were mid team photo and we caught up with them and reflected on the evening so far. We snapped a quick team picture and walked North towards Lourdes together. At this point Oz offered up some nutrition from his ruck sack to which we obliged and cracked open some cold ones while proceeding onwards. In true F3 spirit we recycled the cans in a neighbors can and headed towards Team #4’s? flag which looked like it was at Northview.
We decided to forgo Team #5’s flag which was at Tamo-shanter and looked to be challenging to reach in order to make it to endex by the required time. We made our way to Northview with Team 7 only to come across Team 8 taking a breather in the parking lot behind Northview. Colonel appeared to be holding the sandbag and Sideshow looked to be juggling. We circled the building and discovered the sneaky location of Flag #4. At this point after the considerable amount of time wasted looking for flag #6, we only had 25 minutes to attempt to make it to flag #3 and back to the rendezvous point. We double timed it and YHC was allowed to carry the sandbag for maybe the 3rd time all night (Brute and Daubs we beasts) We made it up to Moose Lodge with time to spare but only one problem, no flag in sight and we had an Impala that was giving us the hard stare down in the parking lot. Dauber I am pretty sure flexed the tricep at this point and they drove off thinking better of a confrontation. Rumor has it the flag was incorrectly marked and it was actually at Memorial Park, however this is just what we heard while eating delicious burgers after the event. We hoofed it back to Inside the Five and told Colonel the flag was out there and to keep looking along with Klinger.
Colonel and Brita really turned on the jets on the way back to ITF leaving us as well as the rest of their team in the dust. We tried to block Sideshow as he jogged past but he’s a strong dude. We made it back to ITF on time and had an awesome night. We decided to go put our rucksacks in Daubers car and earlier in the night he had come to the realization that he had left his key’s in Brute’s car back at the starting point! Efficiency at its finest men! Was a great night with lots of laughs, danger, and excitement. Looking forward to the next one!
Dream Team – Team 7
While the goal of the random team generator (Here’s the link for anyone who questions my integrity: https://www.jamestease.co.uk/team-generator/) was to create an even and level playing field, Team 7 was stacked at the start with Ozzie, Mayor and YHC bringing up the rear. With the late addition of Pixar only hours before the scheduled start we looked like the team to beat.
YHC received many calls/texts/DMs leading up to the event with people pleading their case that the setup for the event was unfair to all but the teams on the edge of the circle. In particular, team 5 was extremely vocal with suggestions on how to redraw the map, recommendations for new starting and endpoints and even concerns that the color of the glow sticks may be too difficult to see for some of the “older” PAX. YHC remained confident that all would run smoothly and minus the adjustment of our endpoint (Inside the Five replaced Sodbusters which ended up being a much better finishing spot), no changes were made.
Team 7 met at Reeb Funeral Home to get prepped and then Uber to our starting point behind Flower Hospital. We picked a great spot for our flag under Highway 23 on Phase 2 of the Sylvania River Trail. This location was easily accessible from the Burger King on Monroe as the trail was open there. However the elevated section closest to Flower was not complete so it would require a traverse behind the hospital which would not be difficult but might not be immediately apparent to all teams.
At 7:30 we were ready to go and we quickly marked out the various flag locations as the texts came through. We made a bee line for flag 8 through Sylvania Country Club’s tennis courts. Being the first team to trespass the property, we probably set the wheels in motion for the Muppet Fuckers to get yelled at and threatened to have the cops called on them. We made short work of finding the first flag.
The team headed out to Team 10’s flag with the goal to double back to Team 9’s Flag. At this point, we realized we really had major advantage as Mayor proved to know every inch of the city. He pretty much identified every flag location within a few yards. He knew the landmark we were headed to and the most direct route (more on this later) to take there. We reached Flag 10 without wasting any time.
Flag 9 was next and we then had a long trek back to Flag 6. This is where Mayor’s navigational skills really kicked in. We made the decision to cut across SCC’s golf course even after getting the warning from Belding that management had threatened to call the police. We went silent as we slipped through a backyard and onto the course. We double stepped our way across the course and then once again slipped between a couple of houses. This would turn out to be just the beginning of our adventures creeping through peoples yards. We got a bit turned around as we made our way to Holland Sylvania but eventually Mayor got us headed in the right direction. Once back on course Mayor suggested another short cut to take us over the tracks. We were able to find a path through behind Sylvania Vet and quickly ended up in someone’s back yard…fenced in. As we attempted to find a way out that didn’t require us to hop over a fence, that clearly was not going to hold anyone’s weight, YHC thought he saw a bedroom light turn on. We quickly scurried under a pine tree, crawling on our hands and knees and hustled back to the street and hopefully out of shotgun range.
We made our way to Flag 6 and celebrated with the beers that Oz and Pix had picked up along the way.
At this point we connected with Team 10. We were headed in the same direction so together we made our way to Flag 4. Somewhere along the way Oz and Splinter decided to see who could go the longest with the coupon. Clearly there’s a nice rivalry developing between these two as they train for the upcoming Indy Marathon. Neither of them would take a break but as we approached Northview it didn’t look like either of them were having a lot of fun. Neither of them was willing to give up so it took a member for each of their respective teams to take the weight from them. As we approached Flag 4 we benefited from all of the posts bitching about how difficult it was to find Team 4’s Flag and a couple of pictures proving that the flag was really there. Mayor and I discreetly slipped away from Team 10 as we made our way back behind the school and stumbled upon the well hidden flag.
With little time left, we had a decision to make. Should we wrap it up and head towards Team 3s flag which everyone complained was mis-marked or we do push to reach Team 2s Flag? Once again Mayor’s knowledge of the city and the private golf courses was a blessing. We made our way towards Highland Meadows and jogged across the course. Ozzie took over the coupon and literally shouldered the weight for a good portion of the next 30 minutes. It was beginning to look like we may have made a mistake as we couldn’t find a spot across the river or out of Highland Meadows. But Mayor guided us true and we reached our final flag for the evening.
This was where the fun began. We were approximately 1.7 miles out from Inside the Five with just little time left to get back. We started to jog back along Monroe once again with Ozzie taking most of the time with the coupon. At the onset, YHC didn’t think had a chance to get back. At this point we had covered over 9 miles and we were starting to drag. We had averaged about a 15 minute pace for the first 9 miles. We were going to need to really speed it up to make it back. Everyone buckled down and just kept moving. There was a lot of vocal encouragement and we switched up the coupon regularly. Ozzie still managed to have the weight for a disproportionate amount of time but didn’t complain. As we got closer we realized we were going to make it and might have a minute or two to spare. We picked up the pace as moved down Maplewood and reached Inside the Five at 10:28. We covered the last 1.7 miles at an 11 minute pace. All in we covered 10.71 miles. YHC was spent.
YHC was pleased to see everyone made it to Inside the Five in one piece and in high spirits. And while everyone was ready for a beer (or three) we couldn’t let the night end without a Circle of Trust. A quick CoR, NoR and the naming of our lone FNG, Paper Boy. We brought it home giving thanks for the amazing group of men we’ve been fortunate to surround ourselves with.
A huge shout out to the rest of Team 7 (Mayor, Oz and Pix). You guys were a blast to spend 3.5 hours with and I was impressed with the big push at the end. Pixar you can run with the best of them, despite how often you tell me you barely break 11 minutes/mile. It was an honor and privilege to plan this event. I sincerely appreciate all of you for humoring me and spending the evening away from your families to make this a success!
Team: Old Glorious Bastards (aka. Team#1)
Pax: Stamper, Bambi, Mater, Walmart
The weeks leading up to the event were as much fun as the event itself. By pure chance Team-1 was assigned a very well rounded team. There was Bambi (the muscle), Mater (the geographical strategy expert), Walmart (the seek and find expert), and myself – Stamper (Really no expertize, just made final group decisions when there was no consensus). The first thing we did was assign a team name, after some back and forth – the name OLD GLORIOUS BASTARDS, or OGB was the best fit for our team and the mission at hand.
Next task was identifying a strategically advantageous location for our flag. We wanted to start in the middle of the map’s radius, so we had the option of going out to the extent of the radius or to the central-point quickly based on where the other teams placed their flags. Our “Geographical Strategy Expert” scouted out a perfect place that met all the legalities described in the team rules, but still created some potential obstacles to finding the flag easily.
Final team preparation task was the team weight, there was a lot of debate on this one, and at one point I think the Event’s Coordinator (Trinity) threatened to give us a different starting location if we kept getting too creative. In the end, we decided on a 2 man carry weight. It was deemed strategically better for the crew we had, and the weight was decorated with a bunch of American Flag Duct tape – which in my opinion, makes any F3 coupon instantly “Cooler”.
With the pre-work now done, the rest of the week was spent sending and reading about various questions to the Event’s Coordinator regarding the Ruck Event. We were each tasked with asking the most ridiculous question that could be asked about the event, and Trinity handled each question pretty well (Good job Trinity!) This was some pretty funny stuff to read and had me doing belly laughs every now and then.
Team Old Glorious Bastards first met at the parking lot behind Root Learning – then carpooled downtown to drop off the vehicles closer to the Rally Point. They then took Stamper’s Ruck-mobile out to the Team 1 flag location.
The team decided final location for the flag – taking painstaking efforts to make sure that the flag placement was placed in public place and the flag was fairly visible for anyone looking for it. The map was then marked taking great care to make sure the center of our mark reflected the location of the flag.
Then the texts started flying in showing the other team’s locations and we sent ours out to the other team captains showing our flag location – indicating that it was “GO-TIME”. The team took about 5 to 10 minutes to plot the other team’s flag locations onto the map we were given based on the incoming texts. We then plotted a course to maximize the number of flags we thought we could achieve. We originally planned the route: 2-4-6-7-8-9-10-3 (we were not going to even attempt 5 due to distance)
Our first target was Team Flag#2 and we set-off on our mission. As we were walking out of the neighborhood we hid the flag in (Towards Erie St.), we immediately came upon Team#4 who looked to be going somewhere fast. They saw us and we were immediately surprised that they did not figure out to walk the way we came to find the Team#1 flag faster, but we were not going to argue. They were going our same direction towards Team#2 Flag – then they doubled back, I am not sure where they were ultimately heading.
We cut down a street just West of the golf course and pretty quickly found the Team#2 flag (@7:57PM) pretty quickly once we arrived at the map location. Then we headed back to Erie Street and started making our way to the Team#4 flag location on the East side of the golf course. We tried to take a shortcut through Sleepy Valley and accidentally took a wrong turn (Totally my fault) and probably added a few minutes to our time, rather than save any time.
We finally made it to Northview and the expected location of the Team#4 flag. We probably spent at least 20 minutes searching all over for this flag. After spending considerable time in the parking lot between the football field and the school, we finally decided to just search the whole property. Our “Seek and Find Expert” (Walmart) finally located the Team#4 Flag (@8:46 PM) in an ally way that opened on the the northern side of the school. The ally went deep to the center of the school, and I do not think any one of us knew it was there. If I drew a box around the enormous “X” that was sent to us by the Team 4 Leader and over-laid it on the map versus the actual location of the flag – the flag might barely be located in the North East quadrant. Given the high level of moral character of those involved with F3, we chalked this up as poor map reading skills and went on with our event.
The original plan was to go to Team#6 Flag – but given the time-suck from finding the Team#4 Flag, we changed our route to skip Team#6 Flag and go directly to Team#7 Flag. We took a direct line toward Monroe Street and traveled it down to Harroun Rd. Here we ran into Team#5 and exchanged some pleasant banter. Froman, who is always filled with cheer and his own unique formula of team building wit, gave us some encouraging words to help us continue our journey. What a special guy! We suspected that the Team#7 Flag was somehow tied into the new walking path construction, but since none of us were too familiar with that area – we were not sure how. We took a chance and went right for the blockaded entrance on the North side of flower hospital, and ignoring the Do not Enter signs – we forged onward. About 4 minutes later – I was second guessing our choice, we were on a path under construction – 8 ft above the ground, in the dark, and the path had no side rails – it was a little unnerving and we were questioning if we were going to be able to get to the flag’s location which appeared to be beneath (or on) the Expressway. We trudged onward, because losing any more time here – would mean we should probably just go back to the bar. Luckily there were ample pathways for us to make our way to the Expressway and then to the map’s location, beneath the Expressway where we found the Team#7 Flag (@9:13 PM)
We continued on the path beneath the Expressway and came up next to the Burger King. It was now time to find Team#8 Flag. We traveled past the Marino Beverage Center and we continued down to Corey Road, where we pretty quickly located the Team#8 Flag (@9:29 PM). Next flag was Team#9 and then Team#10 – both were found without incident – just a lot of walking. I will say that there was some mighty fine artwork surrounding the Team#9 flag (Found @9:46PM) – Must be some artsy fellows in that group… Later, as we left the location of Flag#10 (Found at @10:04PM) – the time crunch really hit us. We had to literally run all the way back from Clayton Fisher Park to the Rally Point in downtown Sylvania. A distance that was later measured to be 1.85 miles. Our team of Ruckers had to basically run this distance with a couple of walking rests in order to make the Rally Point with like 30 seconds to spare. I personally thought my lungs were going to burst. If we did not have the “muscle” (aka Bambi) who never took a break from the team weight during these final 25 minutes – we would never have made the trek in time and would have been disqualified.
The Team met at “Inside the Five” and dropped their gear, did the group COT on Main Street and ordered some well deserved libations!
In the end, Team#1 located and submitted 6 flags (2,4,7,8,9, & 10) – this was enough to tie for first place. This was a fantastic night and fantastic event – I appreciate my F3 brother who planned and participated in this event to make it fun, but especially my team mates who made the whole night awesome.
Team: Danica’s Pit Crew (Team 2)
PAX: Danica, Klinger, Ticket, UPS (MIA)
The pit crew assembled in the parking lot at 7:00 sharp, however UPS was still on his delivery route and wasn’t going to make it in time for us to venture to our zone. So with directions given to our missing member, off we rode with our fearless Uber driver (Ticket’s Wife) to our rendezvous point at Ten Mile Creek in Grove Bel. Alas, our 4th man was still missing and time counting down to the start, what would we do? As pictures rolled in, we carefully plotted the dots on our map, and planned a route we thought would lead us to the victory, we planted our flag in the ground like Baker Mayfield on that fateful night for the Buckeyes in the Shoe. Off we went on our way to Tam O Shanter for Team 5’s flag with directions for our man to meet us. Along the trek we received word that our man had rendezvoused with another team and was now the enemy. Along the route, we passed the historic landmarks of Klingers dwelling, and Colonel’s estate. As we closed in on our destination we decided that the flag must be in the back parking area of Tam O for it seemed the building was out of bounds. But no, team 5 must have had precise GPS mapping to place the flag as far south in their zone as technologically possible. After Ticket did a little strip tease for us we moved out and headed for Zone 6. With the great Olander Park standing in our way, we decided to take a stroll through the park on the beautiful night that it was. They apparently did not want us, because the gates were all locked, so we did our best mountain climbing and scaled the great fence to our route. YHC decided that descending was too easy and that I would rather face plant from the top rail. As we made our way to the Zone 6 location Klinger pulled up with a tweaked back, being the warrior that he is, he decided not only was he continuing but he would carry our team weight in case his back seized up on him later. Upon arriving near the marked locations we realized surely this flag was on private property, but with noses of bloodhounds we found our location and decided the flag needed more light and exposed the chem lights. As we made our way to Zone 7, Ticket and his instincts decided that surely the new bike trail would come into play and had scouted the location prior to the event. However, he was tricked by the half built bridge and surely there was no way across. As we arrived we knew it had to be down there, so YHC took off on a leisurely (ok it killed me) run to in fact notice that we could make it under the Interstate and that glimmer of light excited us to continue on. We then proceeded to Zone 8 and with Klinger’s eagle eyes spotted Old Glory through the pine trees and brush. At this point we had a decision to make, go for Zone 3 or Zone 4, Zone 3 was the decision, as we fought our way towards the City we could hear the sounds of partying and music playing and knew our journey was nearly complete. Upon arriving at the Moose Lodge the search party commenced, but to our dismay there was no flag to be found. This started our mad dash to the finish line to keep from being DQ’d. Eating Drinking and Being Merry commenced and the night will be remembered. The Pit Crew had a lot of fun and did a little rucking too, it was nice to get to know a couple other Pax a little better. Thank you to Trinity for putting on this event, it was a lot of fun.
PAX: Mailman, Bourbon, Scrooge, Paperboy(FNG)
Team 4 made the best decision and decided to hide their flag out in the open behind the shed at Northview. After reading the other backblasts I’m unsure why all the butthurt that was caused by their inability to find a flag. Anywho once we placed said flag out in the open we marked our map with a well placed X and sent our picture off. We recorded all the X’s and went on our way heading towards Team 1’s Flag.
After a quick misreading of the map we found Team 1’s flag and moved on to Team 2’s. The original plan was to head to Tamo but a quick look at the watch and we realized Hard Pass on that crap. We headed towards the infamous Flag in the field behind the Moose Lodge. After spending what felt like an eternity and a little bit of mumblechatter on the group text we gave up hope and cut our losses on that flag. Come to find out later we walked right past the flag in Memorial Park which happens to be on the other side of the road…. But I digress.
The decision was made to make our way through the Dog Patch of Sylvania to find our next flag. On the way we came to the realization that the Taco Bell on Alexis is under construction. We poured a little bit of our water out on the ground in remembrance of better times and kept on into the heart of Dog Patch. After seeing Brute’s car and finding the flag we decided the Arbor Hills flag was out of reach with our time constraint and headed towards SCC. After the earlier mumblechatter about the flag placement it was easy enough to find.
YHC quickly realized we were a bit ahead of schedule so we made a pit stop at Wendy’s and got three 50 cent frostys to enjoy while heading under the bridge on the new trail to collect our last flag. After finding the last flag we realized the path ended but we improvised and pushed our way to the finish line at Inside the five and enjoyed some beverages and great food and a little bit of complaining about peoples lack of hunting flags at Northview skills. All in all it was a great time and our FNG Paperboy did a tremendous job for his first post/ruck. Must be nice to be in your mid 20’s freaking Millenial.
Earth, Wake, & Fire and THE SHOW – Team 8
Wake (Captain), Brita, Colonel, Sideshow
The team promptly met at Root at 7 pm to head to our little slice of Sylvania heaven. However, before we could head out, we had to get our gear in order, and load it into Colonel’s father-in-law’s suv as he was our transportation. As we began pulling around the parking lot to exit, we decided to stop and grab the laminated map that was put in the back with the gear. Colonel, sitting shotgun hopped out, grabbed it and off we went. It was about 15 or 20 yards into the drive that we realized the hatch had been left open so with a quick push of the button, down it went, and onward to the slice we drove.
We decided that placing the flag on the north east side of Sylvania Country Club parking lot near some tall, mature pine trees would be the best location – hidden off the beaten path, not ON the golf course, and in a location that PAX should be able to locate with some mapping skills. As we unloaded from the suv, the chem lights were nowhere to be found. Remember the open lift gate while driving? They’re probably to this day still on the ground of the Root parking lot. With quick thinking, it was suggested to not go back for them, but rather head to Dollar Tree for replacements. The traffic on a Saturday night on Monroe Street was less than conducive for a return to Root, and the Dollar Tree sign could be seen from where we decided to plant the flag. Within moments, the chem lights were purchased, cracked open to glow, and placed on the flag. Good recovery for Team 8.
The picture text messages began rolling in on Wake’s phone just as the clock struck 7:30. We began plotting the other flags on the laminated map and we quickly made a plan of how to knock out the most flags. Since we were on the eastern portion of the game area, we determined that going to flags 9 and 10 would be too costly and time ineffective, so we headed west.
The first flag we headed toward was #7, which was located under 23 on the new path. As we continued toward the west, Brita and all of his engineering prowess made the team aware that the bridge on the new path was not complete, and that if we stayed on it, we’d experience a 12 foot fall, of which none of this team cared to have in our bank of stories for endex. We jumped off the path and took the utility service drive that the construction crew used for their heavy equipment. To our liking, we did not have to plow through any water.
We headed to Team 6. This was garbage. After searching over and over and nearly giving up, one final attempt and we found the flag perched up against a tree in the road right-of-way. The chem light wrappers were still on the chem light, which did not allow any light to shine. We also believe this to be a location not considered public property in the middle of the highly residential subdivision. Maybe if we looked up what the city technically owns, we’d probably find that the grassy area between the road and sidewalk to be publicly owned. However, we opted not to do that research, and instead decided to call out team 6 in the captain’s text thread which alerted other captains of the ill-placed flag.
We then went to the southernmost flag, Team 5. After searching most of Tamo’s parking lot and getting close to what appeared to the be souther border, we found it nestled just in bounds. Northward to Northview and Team 4’s flag, we spent more time on Northview’s property than should be admitted. To Team 8’s defense, none of the team members were Northview students, thus we did not know that void in the building even existed. Well planted, Team 4.
With time now dwindling, we decided to shoot north and maybe capture the flag of Team 1. We had to skip Team 2 and Team 3 due to time constraints. Again, simple mapping skills don’t always seem so simple. Team 1 was completely mismarked and not in the same neighborhood as their X on the map. Time quickly expired, so we had to double time back to endex. We came cruising in with minutes to spare.
All in all, a good time was had by the PAX of Team 8 and this was one heck of an event. The team captain, Wake has to claim the Anchor Award. Irresponsibly throwing the chem lights in the back of the SUV for them to roll out slowed us down. Then, two different times during the ruck, the old hammies went rock hard charlie horse while trying to carry the team coupon. Thankfully the team was willing to half step and wait for the 6. The brotherhood of F3 runs deep in these fine PAX as we stuck it out together. Props to Trinity for all his planning, and communication. This was one event to remember, and certainly one to duplicate for a future F3 Toledo CSAUP event.
Team #3 – Nucking Ruts
Hustle, Boulder, Cousteau, & somehow UPS
Team 3 started off strong with Boulder coming in hot from BG. Hustle and Cousteau worked on a meeting place while Boulder blasted down the highway. The team decided to put the flag in the rarely rucked area of Veteran’s Field. Sticking with the rules, the flag was placed in the open, but behind a transformer forcing other teams to ruck out onto the fields past the parking lot. This was thought to be a good plan till Cousteau miss-marked the map and sent the location as across the tracks near the Moose Lodge. Take that all you other teams. Try to find it now!
The team started their trek back along Erie street having decided to go after flags in order 1-10. Along the way we heard the first of several call out to our team. “Hey, are you doing the Ruck? Do you know where we are supposed to meet?” It was UPS. Rather than send him off, in true F3 fashion, we had him and his gallon water jug/coupon join our merry band. Now 4 members strong we set off in search of the fame and glory.
Upon entering the first of several neighborhoods we encountered the first of our fellow teams. By the time we found or first flag, home owners in the neighborhood were asking “what are all these group out for? Is this some kind of scavenger hunt?” We politely explained our purpose and F3 then encouraged them to join.
As darkness descended, we immortalized ourselves with flag 1 and 2. We skipped 4 for later then headed to the Tamo for team #6. Having looped the Tamo we found team #5’s flag tucked in the corner of the building and set off to head back for #6 and #4. Back into subdivision we went looking for flag # 6. Despite figuring out the flag must be up against a tree in this neighborhood, we circled the street and neighborhood several times. Finally, there it was tucked neatly against the tree. We had come into the street from the wrong way.
It was during this time that we started to get angry texts “Team #3 marking sucks!” Finally, we figured out Cousteau’s ineptitude. At this point we realized we were running out of time so we quick rucked back to Lourdes to try and pick up team #4’s flag. Unfortunately once we got there we realized it was go searching for the flag or get back to the end point. Even with skipping the search for flag #4 we were hard pressed to make it back. It required the team to run back while watching the spry UPS (Hate) bounding energetically along. We arrived with 1 minute to spare with the pictures of our 5 captured flags to the screaming and moaning of other teams about our map marking.
All in all, it was a great experience with a great team.