After a four-year hiatus, the annual Angwin to Angwish trail run made a triumphant return to Pacific Union College. Due to wildfire threats and the COVID-19 pandemic, 2018 was the last time this event was held.
But early on a sunshine-filled Sunday, May 7, 100 runners of all ages from the college and in the greater community gathered atop the mountain to run and have fun. All funds from the race went to support the PUC department of athletics.
Race director Abraham Garrido, also PUC’s head coach for both men’s and women’s cross-country teams, said he was surprised and excited about the number of participants. “They all had a great time, and that's something that stood out,” he said.
Angwin to Angwish, which began in 1974, is a beautiful forested trail run through PUC’s backwoods property. This year’s event offered four races of varied difficulty and terrain. A 10k, half marathon, and 30k took runners up and over the aptly named “Angwish Hill.” There was also a 1-mile fun run for kids.
“PUC has managed the forest well, opened it up to the surrounding area; it’s a huge community asset,” said Napa County Supervisor Anne Cottrell. “It’s great to feature it as part of a race too.”
Cottrell competed in this year’s 10k race and won the women’s division with the fastest overall time. She started running competitively after her third son was born and has raced in Angwin to Angwish three times.
As a supervisor, Cottrell said, she’s interested in how residents and businesses in the community serve each other. She was excited to see so many PUC students and others—including PUC President Ralph Trecartin—volunteering and cheering for participants. “Education is also important, and PUC hits across many of those things. It’s really an anchor in the Angwin community.”
In addition to Cottrell, Matthew Oceguieda from PUC claimed first place in the 10k men’s division, and Eliseo Garriod from Loma Linda came in second. In the women’s division, Kelly Oliver from Calistoga won second place.
In the half marathon, Angwin’s Brooke McLaughlin and Chris Brown-Bourne from San Francisco won first place.
Trecartin’s wife, Virginia, came in second in the women’s half marathon. Eli Bryon also claimed second place in the men’s division.
The winners of the 30k were Nathan Blossom from Santa Rosa and Katie D’Ambrosia from Broomall, Pa. Mark Pittman from Angwin, and Elizabeth Heye from St. Helena came in second place.
Garrido said a lot of preparation went into this year’s Angwin to Angwish race beginning in the summer of last year. “I ran multiple courses that I had in mind until I found the right ones,” he said.
Additionally, Garrido began speaking to potential sponsors and donors in October, and several committed by February. Garrido said they were excited about ensuring race participants had proper nutritional refueling and hydration during the race. This year’s sponsors included the Healdsburg Running Company; Sportago, an outdoor clothing and footwear store in St. Helena; and Heart and Sole Sports in Santa Rosa.
Garrido said it took nearly two weeks to set up and prepare the course, but all the preparation was worth it. “I’d like to thank all the race sponsors, volunteers, and participants for making this year’s race a success.”
For more photos of this year’s Angwin to Angwish, visit https://www.angwintoangwish.com/photos