8/7/2019 Scott Orlando Turtle Trot 5K Hilton Head, SC


Turtle Trot 5K

Palmetto Dunes Hilton Head Island, South Carolina

Finish Time:  22:50

Overall Place:  19th

Division Place:  2nd

Race recap by Scott Orlando.

While on vacation at Hilton Head Island I happened to find a 5K so I thought what the heck let’s run!  The Turtle Trot 5K is a weekly event held every Wednesday morning at Palmetto Dunes during the summer vacation season.  The race draws local runners and walkers as well as plenty of vacationing visitors of all ability levels with a participation of 300-450 runners per week.   Depending on the tides the race is either on the beach or on the paved trails around Palmetto Dunes Plantation.  All proceeds of the race are donated to local charities including a large portion going towards sea turtle protection.  Tides were low so the race was held on the beach for my race.  Hilton Head Beach might be one of the best beaches in the country to run on during low tide.  The wide, flat, and hard packed sand makes it ideal for running.   The race course itself was pretty simple.  The start was in the middle of the course.  You headed south down the beach, turned around and headed back north past the start continuing to another turnaround to finish heading south again at the point of the start.  The race started at 8:00 am and it was already 85 degrees with a feel like temperature of 107.  There wasn’t a cloud in the sky.  Although the course was fast and flat the heat and humidity zapped the energy and pace out of most of the runners.  One interesting rule of the race was that the water stop midway was mandatory.  I have never seen a mandatory water stop before but it was a smart rule considering the heat.  I had a fast first half of the race but like most people slowed down in the last mile as the heat took its toll on me.  I never stopped running and ending up passing many faster runners who gave into the heat and started walking the last half mile.  My finish time wasn’t my fastest but given the heat and the fact that the race was midweek during my vacation I am not surprised.  Let’s just say I was running at vacation pace.  The race was very well organized.  If the race is offered again next year I will certainly do it again.