It was still dark when the Mountain Mamas, a group of female fitness enthusiasts from the Mountain Area, arrived at the marina in San Francisco for the start of the 10 mile Mermaid Race across the Golden Gate Bridge.
As the sun rose and the starting whistle blew, 13 Mountain Area woman began to pound the pavement along with 1,000 other female runners. The course took them through the Presidio, out and back on the iconic Golden Gate Bridge, finishing with a stretch along the marina.
The group included Vanessa Jasper, Suzanne Peek, Deja Garcia, Barbara Irion, Holly Mills, JoAnn Heidebrecht, Casey Schweikert, Stacie Roeder, Heather Branstetter, Mary Pearson, Jules Tuggle, Rachel DeBernardi and Sylvia Sloas.
Three of the woman placed in the top 10 in their age group:
Tuggle placed fourth in her age group (40-44) and 15th overall in 1:17:52.
Jasper finished sixth in her age group (35-39) and 26th overall in a time of 1:19.52.
Peek placed second in her age group (50-54) and 27th overall just two seconds behind Jasper with a time of 1:19:54.
One mini-mermaid from Oakhurst, Claire Tuggle, 9, competed in the 1.5 mile race for 12 and under placing second.
"A beautiful setting, gorgeous weather, and great people made for an outstanding event," Jules Tuggle said. "We're a group of friends and moms who are striving to be all around healthy and fit. We love to encourage and to support each other in our fitness journey."
The woman train together and plan race trips. They have ran in Central Valley races and others in the Bay Area.
The group plans on running in a 1/2 marathon in Auberry in February.