Mike Wade and I traveled 2.5hrs to Adams, MA on Sunday for the Mt Greylock 'half' marathon (results). The 13.5 mile course would be my longest run since April 5th so expectations were low. If I could make it through the day without hurting myself I'd be happy.
The weather actually held out for most of the race with temps in the 60's and overcast skies, only raining once we were back in the car on the way home. That didn't make the course any easier, however. The seemingly endless rainy days we've had over the past few weeks made for some very challenging conditions. This year's course started in a meadow near the base of Mt Greylock (I am told around 1200ft) and then climbed steadily for 3 miles to the 3,491 ft summit, the highest point in Massachusetts. I did not enjoy the climb. I ran what I could but decided not to kill myself in the first 3 miles and ended up walking quite a bit, reaching the summit in exactly 45 minutes. That's when the fun began... a mostly downhill 10 mile romp on some of the wettest trails I've run on in some time. At times it felt like you were running down a mountain stream. Rocks like you read about. Mud only a kid could love. It was some tough running and I still can't believe I didn't fall.
The good thing was the time flew by since it was far from boring. I'm still way to cautious on the downhills (and I totally suck on the uphills) to be even remotely competitive in trail racing, but I still had fun. These folks are crazy! I just can't believe how fast most can run on these trails. I'd get passed on some rocky, wet, muddy, super technical section and within minutes they'd be out of sight.
All in all, a good day and I was happy with my run (2:14:07, 34th overall). Congrats to Mike as well, finishing 'just' ahead of me in 2:10:03.