I marked up the local trail map with what I believe to be the course for Saturday night. As far as I know it's the same course as last year.
What I remember:
- The start is a short walk up the trail from the parking lot (town hall).
- The start is very narrow.
- The course runs clockwise.
- Most of the early stuff is on typical winter hiking trails, maybe snowmobile width.
- There is a sharp left turn maybe 1/4 mile in. I only remember it because I tripped on my own snowshoes making the turn and had visions of being trampled by 80+ pairs of snowshoes.
- Most of the course is fairly flat to gentle rolling terrain, all the way up to the composting shed (see map). My guess is it will be fairly fast, with plenty of room to pass if needed.
- Once you get past the Compost shed the trail is mostly single track if I recall. You really need to get position before heading back into the woods and begin ascending Hicks Hill.
- The climb is taxing but runnable if I remember correctly. There are some pretty long switchbacks on the way up AND the way down, allowing you to see runners in front and behind. If you can't see them I promise you'll hear them.
- I think we sort of summit Hicks Hill and descend for a while before slowly climbing again around the perimeter towards the summit again. This was a difficult section last year (icy), sort of like running on a side of a hill.
- Lots of sharp turns up and over Hicks Hill so pay attention. Sight range is limited at night and you might run into a tree.
- The course was very well marked with surveyor flags...as long as you pay attention.
- The last section towards the finish has some fairly steep sections with lots of turns before leveling off near the finish.
- The finish was within spitting distance of the start.
- My guess is this course will have the fastest times of any race in the GSSS.
- Don't be surprised if you get beat by a banana.
The owner of this blog is not responsible for any inaccuracies, falsehoods or outright lies associated with this race. I can barely remember what I had for breakfast.