Sunday, May 10, 2009
Salmon River Run - 1:00:20
"So, where the heck are we again? Just go over the river and through the woods? ok!"
Finding and running in the 5.4+ mile Salmon River Run was a challenge.For one, I haven't run over 5 miles in one day since the Clinton Administration. Second, It was a course made up of some pavement, some dirt roads and a whole lotta trails. Third, the weather was muggy, humid and HOT.
"Stretching it out and feeling confident pre-race"
All these factors made this run difficult. It also made completing it that much more gratifying (sorta).
"Not so much Post-Race"
Salmon River State Park is a beautiful area to fish, take the dog for a walk or bike. It is very difficult to run. The first mile and a half was pretty much straight up hill. While I hate hills, this wasn't all that bad because I was filled with a patriotic fervor not previously experienced in my brief road racing career. The race started with the National Anthem being played by some very talented fifers. Or players of the fife. Or fifettes. Not quite sure what the proper title is. At the completion of the Anthem, as if our spirits weren't lifted enough, the race starter declared, "Ain't this a great day to be an American". By the time the four over-sized men in Davy Crockett suits shot their muskets into the air the forests of Colchester and East Hampton were echoing with chants of "USA, USA", Amanda and I were high-fiving, and it was GO time.
It didn't take long for the combination of hills and heat to take its toll. The second, third and fourth miles of this race took us off road and along a trail that runs along the Salmon River. It was truly one of the most beautiful trails I've ever been on. Dozens of fly-fisherman were thigh deep in the river to our right and dozens of waterfalls, covered train bridges and blatter relieving runners to our left. The second mile seemed to take forever. I had actually convinced myself that in this race, mile markers were only going to be at every other mile. So when we got to the Mile 2 marker it was like a punch in the gut. Thankfully, the water angels were somewhere around the 2.5 mile marker and by the time we got to Mile 3, we knew we'd eventually get through it.
While the first 4 miles were pretty much all uphill, the last mile and a half was pretty much all downhill. Now, I'm not a fan of up or downhill runs, but coasting that last 7800 feet down Mt. Colchester was much more appreciated than the way up.
We approached the finish line, at an even 1:00:20, we were both very happy to be done. Amanda had decided that this race was FUBAR and she would never consider running it EVER again... until the post-race cookout, when her apparent love of pulled pork sandwiches and orange soda overshadowed the one hour of hell. All was completely forgotten by the time she negotiated the last fun-sized race t-shirt from the organizer, jumped on a picnic table and declared May 9 "Salmon River Run Day" and proclaimed it a day from here on out that people of all ages and sizes would celebrate with blue grass music, beef brisket, pulled pork, cole slaw and Orange Crush.
"I promise pulled pork and cole slaw in every pot..."
As for myself, I enjoyed the event (except for the actual running part of it) and can't wait to cheer on Miss Hilary in next week's duathlon.