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New Okanagan-based adventure racing company kicks off with winter series

Adventure races combines orienteering with running, biking, climbing, urban travel and teamwork
Nathalie Long and her team checking a map during a World Series Adventure Race. (Adventure Racing World Series/photo)

A new adventure race company with a desire to get people outside and out of their comfort zones has popped up in the Okanagan.

Adventure Immersion Lab Ltd. is a Kelowna-based adventure company with CEO Nathalie Long at the helm.

The adventure races involves orienteering where participants need to find their way from point A to point B using only maps, and a compass. It comprises of team and solo events where participants are able to use any means necessary, other than a vehicle, to find checkpoints around a course.

Long spent her childhood in both Quebec and France and while she was always active, sports were not a big part of her every day life.

After moving to Australia, Long found herself surrounded by a group of hardcore athlete friends who both inspired and encouraged her to push her limits.

“I became addicted to sports,” said Long with a laugh.

With the support of her new friends, Long started triathlon, rock climbing, paddling and trail running and has not looked back since. Her talent, tenacity and passion for the outdoors immediately shined and Long took off on the racing scene.

In 2010, she began to compete on the adventure racing world circuit and has raced the iconic and world renowned Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc running race three times, a big step for someone who as a kid “hated running.”

Now, Long aims to recreate the positive, inspiring and uplifting environment her friends created for her in Australia and she began working with other companies to create and direct adventure races.

In 2017, she moved to the Okanagan and brought with her a passion for inclusive spaces and adventure.

Six years later, in June 2023, Long decided to take a big leap and started her own adventure racing company and Adventure Immersion Lab was born.

Immersion Lab offers everything that people may need to help them get active in the outdoors from tailored hiking and trail running guided retreats (co-ed and women only) to adventure races and ultra running coaching.

The company’s upcoming winter race series spans from January to March and is comprised of races in Kelowna, Kamloops and West Kelowna.

In the winter races, people will need to bring skis (classic, backcountry or skate), snowshoes a compass and a sense of adventure.

An overall winner of the series will be crowned based on points and prizes will be awarded to the winner of each event. However, there will also be prizes for stand out individuals and teams who exemplify the spirit of the sport with costumes and a fun attitude.

In the Spring, Immersion Lab will host a family-friendly urban race, an off-road duathlon, a gruelling stage race in the Rockies and an adventure race at Sun Peaks Resort in August.

All of the races are open to all ability levels and people with questions about adventure racing are encouraged to visit or contact the team at

Registration is now open for the winter adventure race series and the urban race which will be held in May.

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Jacqueline Gelineau

About the Author: Jacqueline Gelineau

I'm a reporter in the beginning stages of my career. I joined the team at Capital News in November 2021...
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