Adventure games return to Big Sky Resort

By J. Kyan Smit EBS Contributor

BIG SKY – The second annual Kids Adventure Games were held at Big Sky Resort on Aug. 29, when 136 kids competed in two-person teams in a race against the clock. The event is an intense series of outdoors obstacles that test the competitors’ limits.

Racers ages 6-14, had to mountain bike, slackline, swim, jump, crawl, climb, run, shoot blow darts, and ride a mega slip ‘n slide to complete the course. The event tested competitors’ athleticism, team working skills, and above all, their grit.

In 2014, I competed with my younger brother Colter, when the race was shortened due to cold and rainy weather. This year, the weather allowed organizers to add new obstacles and water events and I competed with my friend Miles Hoover as the Big Sky Strikers. Colter raced with Ryken Daugaard on team Big Sky Billy Bears.

The most intense event was the Darwin Dash in Lake Levinsky. Teams worked together to cross a series of giant floating pads and swim an inner tube back to shore. Our strategy was to pull the ropes connecting the pads and jump. The water was so cold, I could barely breathe. As we kicked from our inner tube, our sneakers felt heavy as they became waterlogged. Back on land, my legs were completely numb, but we had to keep testing our limits.

After pushing ourselves so hard, we were excited and nervous to get our times and results. They announced the second and third place finishers in my category, Boys 12-14, and the suspense was huge. My team – the Big Sky Strikers – won first place, and had the fastest time overall. Hoover and I were ecstatic.

J. Kyan Smit, the author, and his brother Colter celebrate their success at the second annual Kids Adventure Games at Big Sky Resort.

J. Kyan Smit, the author, and his brother Colter celebrate their success at the second annual Kids Adventure Games.

It was great to win, but the best part was having fun with friends and meeting other kids who love the outdoors. Hoover was a great partner, and really kept me going throughout the race. I’m also proud of my brother’s team that won third place in the largest division, Boys 8-9.

Much credit is due to the event organizers, as well as all of the kids who took part. This year’s Kids Adventure Games were incredible, and I can’t wait to defend our title next year.

J. Kyan Smit, 11, is a Big Sky native and sixth grader at Ophir Middle School.