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Couples Who Adventure: Adventure Racing as a Family

February 13, 2023
Couples Who Adventure: Adventure Racing as a Family

Adventure couples are always inspiring, and this couple is no exception. For our next Couples Who Adventure Together, we sat down with Chelsey Magness and her husband Jason. This couple is a true inspiration for adventure-loving families. They shared their love for adventure racing, especially when it takes them to new countries and terrains. They find that these experiences help their relationship grow stronger and more resilient. Check out our full interview below:

What types of adventures do you have with your partner, and what's your favorite?

“I do many adventures with my partner. My favorite is adventure racing, especially when it is an expedition race in a brand new country to us! In adventure racing, we do all of the sports and we get to see and experience brand-new terrain and landscapes together while pushing ourselves and one another. We both feed off of these experiences and find that it helps our relationships grow stronger and more resilient after every race and big mission we do together.”

How has your adventuring changed with growing your family?

“While we used to be able to do  ALL of our training and adventuring together, since having kids we have had to find different adventurer buddies or go out alone. While we still do get one to two adventures together a week, it has had to change and that is ok as we have made many new friends and have found the alone time to be quite nice! We have also found that taking our kids along with us on adventures is one of our biggest and greatest joys in life right now. We plan many bike packing, pack rafting and backpacking trips every year with our kids and we all find that we love it so much.”

How do you balance your racing and traveling as a couple and family?

“We "try" to balance it all by taking turns going to big races (one of us stays home with kids and works on the media side) and then sometimes we bring the kids and the grandparents along! Jason and I each get one to two races together a year while our kids get watched by family members back home. And whenever we travel to teach, put on races or to coach we always take the kids along as they love to explore new places as well and are pretty ok with their Mom and Dad's way of living so far!”

What's a funny story about an adventure you've had together - good, bad, and ugly?

“When the world shut down back in 2020 and all of our races got canceled, including the ones we were putting on, we set out with our kids on a 400 plus mile ride through Oregon. Jason is a master at putting race courses together, so I let him do all the mapping and planning for our ride from Bend down to Klamath Falls. He took us on dirt obscure roads the entire way in order to keep us off big highways. For the most part it was amazing, but we did run into many obstacles that we had to find a way over, under or through.. or sometimes even turn around. With a 9 month old and a 2 year old, and all of our gear and food for many days in tow we had MANY unforeseen adventures.  We had to lift the kid trailer up and over many downed trees one day, luckily our two year old turned the whole thing into a game and our 9month old slept through all of it! On another day, we got to a hotel that we thought was open but found out that it shut down for Covid, so we set up a tent in its backyard and had gas station burritos instead of room service. There were also many amazing moments as well. We saw many unbelievable sunsets and sunrises, we all slept snuggled in a tiny tent, we learned a ton about birds and plants as we biked through the Klamath marsh lands and we met many nice people who gave us snacks and water along the way.”

Any advice for other families who are on the fence about getting outside and adventuring?

“My biggest advice is to take baby steps. Instead of spending a ton of time planning a grand adventure, start by going outside everyday with your growing family or making a goal to hike somewhere every week. This could be hiking to the local park, or driving a tiny ways to get outside of the city to hike in the near wilderness. We started by hiking to the woods (literally a half mile from our house), which then turned into camping there which then turned into biking to some further woods to play and camp there. “

It doesn't have to be far, but getting into the habit and dealing with whatever nature dishes out teaches them how to be adaptable and resilient. This couple is a true inspiration for adventure-loving families.