A fundraiser for cancer research sent people dodging hay bales, climbing racks and trudging through the bush.
The inaugural Crushing It for Cancer was held north of Estevan in a field that was set up for a more leisurely Tough Mudder challenge. Tough Mudder is an extreme obstacle course event that has its participants dunked in icy water, crawling under barbed wire and getting shocked with high voltage electricity.
Abbey Webber's obstacle course challenged the participants but was all about fun and raising money for a good cause. The event raised about $2,000 and proceeds went to the Saskatoon City Hospital Foundation in support of breast cancer research.
Webber decided to start the event this year because a friend of hers from Eastend, where Webber hails from, was diagnosed with breast cancer two years ago. Their fathers lived together when they were younger and were neighbours when Webber was growing up. Another neighbour of hers died of breast cancer about 10 years ago.
"We lived out by Cypress Hills and we didn't have a lot of neighbours, so two neighbours within 10 years of each other when there's not that many of us was a lot (to take)," said Webber.
She said she wanted to help and her friend was really impressed by the Breast Health Centre in Saskatoon. She encouraged Webber to do take on some initiative that could continue to make the centre an even better place for women diagnosed with breast cancer.
"To go up to Saskatoon, face that, and go through treatment, it's such a different environment," said Webber. "She really just felt like the improvements that they're making to the Breast Health Centre, I think it really hit home to her. She got attached to that cause."
Webber is new to Estevan, but said there is so much generosity in the city, she thought this could be a good way to meet new people and raise some money for a cause that means something to her and many others.
"This race is always something I've wanted to try," said Webber about why she chose the obstacle course.
She wrestled in university, and some of her old teammates told her she should try Tough Mudder. She has her family and young children so it's not easy for her to travel to the Tough Mudder event and take part.
"This is how we exercised when I was a kid growing up," said Webber. "On the farm, we never would have thought of going on a treadmill. Fitness doesn't have to be a treadmill. It can be home based."
The Crushing It for Cancer obstacle course had participants running through tires, scaling mounds of hay bales and even going low, crawling head first through a hole. That doesn't even count the natural gopher holes the roughly 30 racers always needed to be wary of. The obstacles were planned and constructed by Webber's husband, Ryan Hogg.
She said she wanted to make it fun and something that people would want to do.
She would like to host more of these events and is even considering holding one in the winter.
"I'd definitely like to do it next year. Now that the dry run has gone really well, I'd like to do it really big."
It was a little last minute this year, so she is hoping with a little more time to plan, they can go bigger and better next year.