Got up early and headed out to Gay City looking for some action.
Wait a minute ... let me try that one again:
Got up early and headed out to Gay City State Park looking for some trail-running action at the Summer Solstice 5.5 Mile Trail Run being held there.
Results here. 6th overall out of 207. 6:44 pace.
The first 0.4 miles were uphill on asphalt; not what I was looking for. The legs were feeling a bit wobbly from running 15 miles fairly hard in Arcadia just 24 hours earlier and 8 miles with Tom the day before that.
The rest of the course did not disappoint. Entered the trail just behind Helmet, who for some reason was wearing a bicycle helmet. Did he realize he had it on? Just ahead of us, a guy branched off the trail and took a bypass which we could see in the distance would cut a huge amount off our course. Some guys yelled at him; I was upset too but just tried to let go of "Rosie Ruiz".
|Part of the trail|
The trail meandered with a number of switchbacks and uphill climbs, before a long downhill section on a dried up stream bed of rocks. I put it in gazelle mode and look who's around the corner: Socks and Rosie Ruiz. See you later, I'll take it from here, boys!
A bridge across a river and a long uphill climb through rocks brought me to mile 4, by which time my legs were toast. I passed a few more through mud crossings and for the last mile I could hear someone right on me. Finally as we came towards the end of the trail, "Lanky", a 6-foot plus giant, flew past me. The trail finished and there was about 0.2 miles to go, downhill on asphalt the whole way. I set Lanky in my sights and picked up the pace and caught him. Uh oh, he looked at me and pumped it up a gear and ran side-by-side with the finish in sight now. Sorry, Lanky, but as Jonny aptly put it regarding downhills, this is prime gazelle habitat, as I found yet another gear and picked it up past him sprinting through the finish.
|Summer Solstice finish|
|My division award|
Post-finish, had a Long Trail "Blackbeary Wheat", which was nice as it was ice cold as opposed to the warm water. Caught up with the two people I knew, including Hartford Marathon Foundation executive director Beth who was discussing Surftown with me.