Sunday, May 31, 2009

Pack Monadnock 10-Miler

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Race #2 in the USATF-NE Mountain/Trail Circuit  ("Mountain Goat" Series)

Here are photos I took while running the 2009 Pack Monadnock 10-Miler in Wilton, NH.

"Pack" is the 2nd race in the USATF-NE Mountain/Trail Circuit (the “Mountain Goat” Series.) If you run all six races in the series, you get to bypass the Mt. Washington Lottery next year.

The 10-mile course is really two races. The first 8.5 miles are a pleasant, rolling tour of scenic Southern New Hampshire. But the final 1.5 miles is very steep. A spiral staircase. You climb and turn and climb and turn...and with every turn, you think This time it's the summit. Has to be! This time for sure...

But it's never the summit. Every turn just takes you to another stretch of road that seems intent on spiralling you right up to the sky.

I am probably giving the wrong impression here. The course is beautiful, and the final 1.5-mile climb to the summit of Pack is no big deal. (Certainly nothing like Mt. Washington or Loon.) But that road to the summit comes after 8.5 miles of rolling country it is TOUGH when you finally reach the mountain and have to dig.

My advice? Take it Easy. Treat the first 8.5 miles as a warmup. Don't get carried away. If you wear yourself out before reaching Pack itself, you will regret it.

I ran with a camera, and took pictures as I ran. (Yes, I took photos as I ran. I didn't stop or slow down. After all, I was in a race!) If you click on the “Play” button in the center of the photo below, you can view my slideshow, and get a first-person experience of the Pack Monadnock 10-miler:

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