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Race Evaluation

Hudson Highlander:


1. I wasn't 100% due to a muscle strain but figured I could get thru the race if I took it easy. One problem I have with this map is I can't see the smaller trails. I spent alot of time before the race studying it just to know where they are, but it didn't help. I never saw the trail running options to 1. I was with the lead pack going basically straight, hitting the trail to the west of the green/yellow marsh with the three islands. They kept going east on the trail -- I decided I wasn't going to be able to run fast enough to make any money trail running anyway so I cut uphill towards Hogancamp Mtn.

AY was with me, EB and some others were behind, and a guy I didn't know in shiny pants was up ahead. I asked AY if he thought this was a good choice -- he said 'that guy's doing it' -- I asked if he knew who that was and whether he was any good -- he says he's wearing shiny pants, he must be good.

EB says he's following me and says -- I hope you know where you're going -- or something to that effect.

My plan was to read rock to the long drainage splitting Hogencamp, then read marsh and bare rock into the big reentrant, but I think I was too far east and misread the rock early.

I ask AY if he knows where we are -- he points and says -- I think that's that marsh. I don't see a marsh in the terrain or on my map.

At that point EB is still back there; I decide to press on straight figuring I'll relocate on the fly. They all bail somewhere leaving me all alone. Great, less than a K into the race and no pack already.

I press on straight, god its crappy on top of the mountain. Eventually I see the guy in shiny pants ahead but he disappears. Finally I pick up some hill features and the marsh with the small island to the right of the line about 700m away from the bag.

200m later or so, much to my surprise I see a pack of AY, EB, NA and perhaps others coming in from my left. Well, this wasn't too bad after all, I think.

Across the big reentrant into the bag I'm with AY; we're calling out the features as we pick them off and spike the bag.

JF is at the control and I think he says we're 30 seconds behind the lead pack. That seemed hard to believe. It looks like EB booms low as we seem him a couple of lines down as we leave.

2. I say to AY - left or right - he says right and I agree, tho in retrospect left looks better. Trail around and in, see EB coming from the other side, who apparently went left. Cadet with us at this point.
4. +00:05Think I see JJ punching at the reentrant just after the laurel, check it out but only lose about 5 sec. See JJ and JS leave the control.
5. Trail south then east below the marsh. Behind JJ, JS, and possibly others; with AY. Not sure where EB is. AY and someone else hesitate at the trail junction just to the west of the yellow marsh tip; I run SE seeing VG up ahead. As the trail bends east, VG takes the trail to the south and I continue to the east; look back and see nary a soul.

Alone again, I cut up the hill as the trail drops, and pick up the trail fragment halfway up the side of the hill. Lady luck smiles as this trail seems to be going farther than mapped and leading right to the control.

I read my way into the bag and hear EB behind me who says "nice job" and says "lets catch the lead pack"

6. +00:30Whereupon I'm still driving and boom the next control. EB is with me. We read both marshes and still hit the rock feature to the north of the bag, only a 30 sec boom, but VG catches us here, as do AY, FF, a cadet, and someone I don't know.
7. Now in a pack, we hit the trail, VG takes the trail run, most of the pack goes straight after some indecision.

We get to that hill SE of Surebridge mine, I say there's no way I'm climbing it, we sidehill around, EB and I get begind the others.

8. +00:30Trail junct, rocky ground, left of thin marsh to the left of the line. EB is no longer with the pack. We catch up to GB and others as we approach. No sign of VG. We boom high but eventually find it.
9. Decent sized pack on the trail run. I start to fall behind as I am still wary of pushing it. EB comes out of nowhere and yells "yeah!".
10. The pack is leaving me in the dust. Behind GB, others well ahead. Attack off the streamers and the chain of people leaving.
12. Eat a gu on the run into the transition area. EB, AY gone. FF well gone, no sign of him. Take gatorade at the transition area.

Pass GB on the way to the second start triangle. All alone, then see EB, AY and a cadet climbing the hill. Handrail up the stream. Punch about 30 sec behind those guys.

13. Eventually catch up. See FF about 2 lines low and he joins the pack (or was that the next control). Everyone moving very slowly thru here.
14. EB finds it first. Pack now me, EB, FF, AY. and a cadet.
15. Behind the pack but pick up the twin boulders and stay on line while pack drifts. EB ahead and I say "its behind that thing" but I get there first. AY says nice one. Nice to earn my keep.
16. In the lead I actually push it a little. I hate being at the tail end of the pack. EB goes a little left, rest of pack follows me straight. So much for my burst -- get there the same time or perhaps a second or two behind eddie.
17. +00:15I say -- eddie, you're high -- but I was wrong and low and boom along with FF. Only 15 sec, FF has the speed to catch up, I don't.
18. Map got crunkled up in the map case and I could not fold it. Had to rip the map case open and mess around with it. Pack pulls away a bit.
19. With AY, EB and FF pulling away.
22. Seem to remember this area in particular from the team trials. See the bag a mile away. Give up on EB and FF. My leg is starting to kill, and I debate whether to drop out after the second loop. Think I'm ahead of AY at this point, not sure.
23. +00:30Aim to swing right of the big swamp to the south, basically all alone. Hear tramping and branches cracking and voices and figure its eddie and the going isn't too smooth that way. Swing left instead over the hills. I'm a good 30 seconds in the lead but boom the control. EB and the others come in from behind, and AY says -- its this way.
24. +00:10We lose the cadet somewhere along here. EB, AY and myself go over bald rocks while FF takes a route more to the right. Pass thru #38 then by the swamp. FF is ahead 150m, his route was evidently faster.

I take a bearing off the finger of green about 200m out; EB ahead but drifting left going after FF who seems left as well. AY with me we come over the hill and don't see it. Ay says its gotta be hear, I panic and wonder if EB and FF where right after all. I start to head out, and see it at my feet, was standing right on top of it the whole time.

25. Contouring along, see eddie below heading back towards it, about 200m away. We yell that its back that way, nice guys that we are. See FF doing the same thing a few seconds later.
27. Eddie catches up somewhere on the downhill. Damn, made up 400m in that short of time. I get there first.
28. My leg is killing me. I talk myself out of retiring but decide to slow it down and baby my leg. Take another gu. Eddie and FF leave me on the trail run back to the exchange. Eddie leaves the exchange and says -- c'mon, we're leaving. I take less time at the exchange and basically leave with him and FF. AY not with us.
30. King of the mountain leg. EB and FF are pretty much gone for good as we run the trail past the three island swamp. They disappear up the hill -- last I see of them is them circling back to punch as apparently they boomed. Alone.
31. No one seems to be behind me. I figure a slow, but clean race from here on out, and my place is fixed. Between the swamps. Hear voices as I approach the control, but see no one.
33. +00:45No reentrant anywhere near the center of my circle, that I can see anyway. Bounce off the cliff to the northwest and stumble into a bag. Not sure what the feature was, or what is circled. Hear footsteps approaching.
35. +00:30A little sloppy and boom south. AY and the guy in shiny pants show up.
37. Into the exchange with AY and the guy in shiny pants. They tell us we're 6th, 7th, 8th. Behind EB, FF, BG, SZ and WH. Not too bad. Realise I'm going slower than I want to, but you play the cards you'r dealt. HH02 I bonked on the last loop because I skimped on water and nourishment. Ended up making a huge error that cost me a place. Decided not to make that mistake this time, but I was also running much slower this time.
38. Guy in shiny pants dusts me on the trial. AY stops, looks to be cramping.
39. Last I see of the shiny pants guy is at the swamp.
40. Sloppy attack thru the "white woods". Figure I'll read the bare rock but those bushes make it impossible to move around or read anything. AY says its "over there".
41. Take one look at that leg and say trail. Trail is sort of hard to follow. I see the building and think about cutting some distance, but decide to play it safe. Second visit to this bag.
42. Take a long time drinking and Alan catches up.
43. +00:05Little hesitant as I see the feature but it is bare rock in the terrain but mapped as a white hill. Moving glacially slow thru this whole loop.
44. +00:30Trail is hard to see on the map and hard to follow, but no way I'm going cross country at this stage. Picking up the blazes more than anything else, while trying to maintain rough contour contact. Get confused at the trail junction -- can't find the trail I want and other is going wrong direction. Decide to go cross country but Alan says the trail is over here. Attack off the clearing. Never see the full contour hill right before the bag.
45. Alan jokes-- how about I take the road and you contour along, and we'll see who gets there first. The road run is boring, but welcome, I guess. I'd rather the race just ended here, though. This is probably my slowest in-race road run ever. I figure AY and I will finish together but he stops to work on his leg and says -- see you at the finish.
46. I see WH on this road run. Asked if he won (he did). Ask his time (4:01, 41 minutes ahead of me).
F. 7th place. Behind the guy in the shiny pants -- sorry I never caught your name. The best news is I think I took it easy enough not to aggravate my leg too much more.

Thanks to Alexei, Boris, and all the organizers and helpers. Hopefully we can do it again next year.

Total Time Lost - 00:03:50

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