Sunday, July 24, 2016

Mud bogging event at Sproules attracts big crowd

Toni Lucas - A mud bogging event dubbed the Western Mud Slingers was held at the Sproule family farm approximately 3 miles east of Pincher Creek on Saturday, July 16. Organizer Greg Chartier was delighted with the turnout, which he estimated at close to 1,000 people including competitors, volunteers, and spectators.

People were coming and going and often coming back with more people, and there was no admission fee or gate, so an accurate count was close to impossible.  The food truck did a brisk trade.  The ground was sloppy from torrential rain and melted hail from the day before. Although that may dampen the enthusiasm in other sports, the slick conditions were welcomed during the bogging. Two trenches 200 feet long and filled with a minimum of 18 inches of slick, gloppy mud were the field of battle.

Organizers Greg Chartier and Sierra

Chartier said, "A lot of us drive to do this in the summer. I thought let's bring this to Pincher. Something new." He said there were local competitors as well as people from Saskatchewan, British Columbia, Calgary, and Hilda (Alberta).

Competitors were directed to the pit for their class. The pits were the same length, one having a deeper base.  The object was to make it from one end to the other in the best time. The flag dropped after officials deemed there was no further forward motion of the vehicle.  The competition was measured using a combination of time and distance within each horsepower class. More than one machine was mired to the point where it had to be dragged backwards by its tow chain back to the starting point.

Front row for mud bogging enthusiasts Gage and Dylan

The crowds enjoyed the show, and there was high energy cheering for the trucks, jeeps, and other vehicles the owners dared to risk in the slurry. The local Mustang Football Association and Elks were on hand volunteering for the event.

Pincher Creek Rotary President and Mustangs booster Dan Crawford announces 50/50 winner

 Mustangs acted as security, officials and pit crews, while Elks ran concession and the beer garden. "The Mustangs were here from the start," said Chartier. When asked if this would be the first of an annual event Chartier smiled and said "I sure hope so."

Photos and videos T. Lucas, Raiden Trodden, and C. Davis

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