Another installment of the Gericks Wasa Triathlon wrapped up this year, which featured tests of physical endurance under some pretty threatening skies and cold temperatures in the lake.
But those challenges were no match for the human spirits of over 900 athletes on the Sunday race day, while over 350 youngsters braved the conditions on Saturday for the TriKids event.
Calgary was well represented on the podium in the Olympic distance category, as Grant Burwash and Tanya Salomon-who both hail from the prairie city-took the top spot overall in the men's and women's division.
Burwash finished the Olympic course-a 1.5 kilometre swim, a 40 kilometre bike ride and a 10 kilometre run-with a final time of just under two hours at 1:42:56, while Salomon finished at 2:00:24.
"Quads and calves are definitely sore right now, but I'm happy with how it went," said Burwash.
Burwash beat out his closest competition-Matt Seeley of Polson, ONT-by just over two minutes, but noted that the runner-up made him work for his first place finish after putting in a good performance on the bike.
"The run has always been my strong suit, so today, coming in the transition, I had to do a bit of a pep talk," said Burwash. "I said, 'The run's gonna hurt today, Grant, so lets keep going,' and was definitely happy with how my legs ran today.
"It was fun; it's always fun here. It's a beautiful area and the weather actually turned out pretty good."
This is Burwash's fifth time competing in the Wasa Triathlon over his 10 years as a triathlete.
The Olympic course had a single adjustment as cold water temperatures in Wasa Lake forced organizers to make the swim the same distance as the Sprint at just 750 metres.
There was more local representation in the Sprint course, which is half the distances of an Olympic race, with Travis Leeden of Fernie finishing first overall for the men and Michelle Taylor of Invermere taking the top spot for the women.
Leeden finished just over an hour at 1:08:44, while Taylor finished with a time of 1:19:30.
This was Leeden's first crack at the Triathlon in Wasa, but has done a few in Elkford over the last two years.
"Everyone's competing in the same weather conditions, so there's no advantage or disadvantage," Leeden said.
Of the three parts to the race, Leeden said his swim was the strongest, partly because he has a background in the competitive side of the sport.
But it was during the run that he knew he was close to finishing close to the top.
"A guy was following me on the run and when I reached the 3-kilometre mark and looked back I saw no one," Leeden said. "I knew then that I was doing fine."
While the rain held off for the main race on Sunday, the TriKids event experienced a bit of a downpour, which may have dampened the attendance a bit, but not their spirits, according to race director Charlie Cooper.
"We didn't know what kind of turnout we were going to get because of the weather," said Cooper. "I was amazed and floored by how many people were here."
"It was raining in the morning and we decided that we can't put the kids in cold waters at 13 C, so as the day went on each group did a run on the beach and then their bike and their run as planned and there was not one complaint."
Many familiar names were a part of the Olympic event. Dallas Cain, a familiar face on the Ironman circuit with his brother, Ryan, posted a top-10 overall effort,
The Daily Townsman's very own staff member Tim Fix finished as the highest-ranked Cranbrookian with a time of 2:04:48-good for 31st overall.
Chris Kostiuk was the highest-ranked Kimberley native, placing 70th overall with a time of 2:13:49.
In the Sprint course, Mark Neeve of Kimberley finished fourth overall with a time of 1:13:54, while Cranbrook's highest finisher was Kevin Armstrong, with a time of 1:22:39 for 30th overall.
All times for the Gericks Wasa Triathlon can be viewed at www.winningtimes.ca.