Star Wars Light Side – Half

My alarm went off bright and early about 3 am again. This time, it was much easier for me to get ready. I had no hair piece. I was out the door and on my way by 3:45. I knew exactly where to go this time, so I felt like it was quicker. I knew I wanted to get the other pre-race photo op this time. So, I briefly watched the screen and the DJ area.

Then I got in line. I passed this picture up at Dark Side last year and knew I had to have it next time. I waited about 15-20 minutes to get this one.

Then I headed towards the corrals. This was the picture of the staging area from the other side.

Soon I came to the corral split which was already open.

I made my way into my corral. Since I was early, I was pretty close to the front. I had another nice runner take my pre-race picture.

This was the crowd in front of us.

And here was the sea of humanity behind us.

There are corrals beside us that were after ours. Before long, the National Anthem was played. Then the first corral was off. We followed the usual process of waiting until a few corrals were released and then following the rope forward keeping a space between us and the corral ahead. Finally, we reached the start line. If I remember correctly, Carissa had just left for the finish before our corral. These guys saw us off.

We start down Disneyland Drive and run by Paradise Pier.

Then we turn left onto the access road around the back of DCA.

They had projections on screens and buildings in the backstage area.

As with the 10k, we entered the park in Carsland.

It looks like I had a twin behind me when I ran by Flo’s. Incidentally, the lights were a little too much after all the dark which is probably why my eyes are closed.

Once again we ran around to Bugs Land.

As we were leaving Bugs Land, we got to Mile 1.

Then was the picture I had to stop for since I didn’t stop during the 10k. Unfortunately, C3PO was on a break during my picture and I wasn’t willing to wait longer. The good thing is the line was much shorter. I assume it’s because all the people that stopped for the 10k didn’t stop this time.

I think I like my camera picture better on this one but I’ll let you decide.

Here’s the PhotoPass shot.

Next came the loop around the Paradise Pier area. I got a selfie with the Fun Wheel.

For some reason, the words were not lit up on the Paradise Pier sign. I thought that was strange.

Somewhere in this area they caught me using my water bottle during a walk interval.

I had to get a picture of the lit up water from the back side. It truly is beautiful.

This time the Star Wars Rebels characters were at the backdrop.

Then came the first water stop.

We finished the loop and headed to the left towards Grizzly River Rapids. If the picture wasn’t so blurry, you could see the runners just entering the loop straight ahead.

At this point, I decided I needed a bathroom stop. So, I found this restroom near Soarin’.

Feeling much relieved, I came out of the bathroom to see this projection on the Soarin’ building.

We ran by the front entrance an into the Hollywood section. There were some Jedi training here.

Just before the Tower of Terror was a picture stop. You can kind of see it in this photo.

When I got to the front of the line, a man told myself and the person behind me to go ahead because he was waiting for people. At the time, I wondered if he was Rebecca’s husband but I was afraid it would be too awkward to ask if he wasn’t. So, I went ahead and got my picture.

We then headed backstage where we found Mile 2.

Once again, we ran under the East bus stop area.

Which meant we had to come back up the other side. They did have themed music and lights going in the tunnel.

We passed the first custodian banner back here.

Mile 3 found us still backstage.

Shortly after that, we got to the 5k point.

In case this all sounds familiar, it is the same course as the 10k to this point. The route inside Disneyland changes a little. We saw some spare ride vehicles in this area.

Custodian banner #2 and some cast member spectators.

Followed right after by water stop #2.

Custodian sign #3 was right before our entrance to the park.

We entered in ToonTown again.

We did have to run under the railroad tracks to leave ToonTown so that is the other “hill” in the race.

On the other side of that ToonTown entrance is It’s a Small World. I once again stopped for a picture.

The PhotoPass people got me rejoining the race flow after my picture.

There were a couple Stormtroopers in this area taking pictures.

Just beyond them you can see the runners in front of us further in the course. This is once again a place where you almost meet. We turned left and ran around the Matterhorn into Tomorrowland. There were more Stormtroopers on the Launch Bay area. I stopped for a selfie here.

The cast members here were cheering with lightsabers.

By Star Tours I found the line for BB8. I knew Rebecca was close so I sent her a text to see if she wanted to join me. Right as she got my text, she was getting in line herself. So, she joined me instead. We got out picture together.

Here’s the official picture.

The official photographers got us leaving Tomorrowland.

We ran back by the Matterhorn and into Fanstasyland by Alice. That is where you could see the runners from the It’s a Small World area. We ran around the Carousel..

and through the castle.

We stopped to get a castle picture (no jumping for this one).

This time, we ran around the hub and to Main Street (no detour by the Haunted Mansion). The horses and their handlers were at the exit of the hub.

We found Mile 4 along Main Street.

At the end of Main Street was a character stop. We waited in line and were eventually joined by Rebecca’s husband and pregnant sister. The lady was carrying twins and still walked the whole race. I did find out waiting in line that it was Rebecca’s husband in the previous line. This character stop was Chewbacca. Unfortunately, my eyes were closed.

At this point, I said goodbye to Rebecca since she was going to stay with her sister. I saw a medical stop by the Fire Station.

It was probably good placement for those not paying attention to the tracks in the road. The sun was rising (and quite blinding in the right direction) as we left the park.

They had a switch lane thing going in the Esplanade to allow people to cross (eventually).

We ran through security that leads to the bus drop off.

The third water stop was just before we turned onto the main road.

At this point, they had Harbor Blvd closed to traffic in the direction we ran. There was a line of support vehicles parked here.

Loved these spectators! Keep in mind we had not yet reached Mile 5.

Another good one

We kept straight by Katella.

You can see the speedy runners turning left onto Katella heading towards the finish. This starts the sort of out and back section. For about a mile along Harbor there are faster runners on the other side coming back. Just after the convention center area, we got to Mile 5.

Soon we came to a stretch of cheerleaders.

Just across an intersection was another group of cheerleaders.

I think this might have been a third group next to them.

And a fourth group at the end of the long line.

Eventually we reached Mile 6.

Along Lampson was a bank of port-o-potties.

A medical stop was just after the intersection.

Just after that was the 10k point.

Almost immediately followed by a water stop.

We ran by the Great Wolf Lodge. I had to explain the concept to a couple running by me.

The next thing we encountered was a whole school section. They appeared to have cheerleaders, a band, and flag corp.

There was another band by El Pollo Loco.

We finally left Harbor and turned right on Garden Grove. I did grab a red vine from the strangers.

About halfway down this stretch, we found Mile 7.

I believe this was where I noticed my left thigh being uncomfortable and had to pull down the leg of my compression shorts. I would have to do that one more time later on before it stayed in place. We turned right onto 9th.

A couple blocks later we turned left on Stanford.

There was another water stop and medical area here.

I think this stop also had fuel. Right after the water stop, we got to Mile 8.

Along this section in a park area we found the first set of cosplayers.

They were on the corner also as we turned left on Euclid.

They had some pretty cool vehicles on the right side of the turn.

Shortly after leaving them, we turned right on Acacia.

Then we started the one block loop in Garden Grove by turning left on Main Street. You can see the people finishing the loop straight ahead.

Main Street is a cute downtown area with this textured road (that drove some people nuts).

We turned right back onto Garden Grove after reaching the end of the downtown section.

After one block, we turned right onto Grove.

In this section was another good band.

It’s amazing how much hearing a school band can boost your spirits. After the band, we turned right on Acacia to complete the loop.

We turned left onto Main street to leave the loop. You can see those just starting it straight ahead.

Soon we came to what I believe was the 501st. They always have a ton of great characters. Rather than try to stop for all the pictures this time, I took video while walking by them.

My battery actually died towards the end of this so I’m glad it was saved. I stopped by the Mile 9 sign just after them to plug up to my charger and get enough power for more pictures. Thank goodness for portable chargers.

Here’s something you won’t see at Walt Disney World… an random evangelist on the course.

We switched to the right side of the road for the next water stop.

We made it to 15k!

We turned right on Chapman.

Just after an intersection came Mile 10.

Almost immediately following Mile 10, was a water stop.

I think I stopped at these port-o-potties.

Right at the end of our time on Chapman, we found Mile 11…

and another water stop.

The cheerleaders lined our left turn onto Harbor.

Note at this point there is no one on the other side of the road. We made a left onto Katella.

Mile 12 could be seen in the picture above, but here is the close up.

There was a water stop across from the convention center.

I should say, I was fueling with my GU. I know I was a little late with it. However, by Mile 11 I was pretty much done with running. I joined up with another lady and we encouraged each other through the next couple miles. Eventually we turned right onto Disneyland Dr.

Then left at Paradise Pier hotel.

There were a couple bands at the right turn in the parking lot (behind Paradise Pier).

Mile 13 was by the Adventure Tower before the security area.

Finally, I could see the finish and ran it in.

Post-finish selfie

Medal Selfie

I had my 10k medal in my shorts pocket during the race to get the finishers pictures. I knew my thigh would be raw so I stopped at the medical for some Vaseline. That’s when I realized my thigh had been bleeding and there was a small hole rubbed in my left thigh. I did get some Vaseline and a band-aid for after my shower. This is the post-clean up picture.

I got my official Rebel Challenge finisher picture

and then walked down this chute to the reunion area.

This was the reunion area.

And the line for security. They did put all the medal wearers on the left and let us go straight through.

I hustled back to my room only I had to walk even longer around the tower this time before I could cross. My official time was 3:46:08. That’s not too bad for walking almost 2 miles and having a bleeding thigh.

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About kristincooke

I am a mother of 2 that started running in 2012. I also enjoy baking and some crafts.
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