No Hill for Old Men

“Man, you always make the best faces at the finish line,” laughed NENSA competition director Justin Beckwith at the finish of Sunday’s Climb to the Castle.

Utterly fried, I gasped for air. Someone asked if I needed help getting out of my roller skis. I shook my head no, even though back pain had made it difficult to clip into them down at the toll gate.

Another sufferfest on the Whiteface Mountain toll road. Just one hill; how hard can it be? Five miles, an eight per cent grade, 2300 feet of vertical. Unlike the previous year, mild temperatures, negligible wind, and dry pavement should have made for a good race.

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Sterling Forest Ramble

It’s been a weird summer. I spent most of June and July working and schlepping stuff to a self storage unit as I prepare for an impending divorce. I managed to choose the hottest day of the summer to move out of the place I’ve lived for 25 years and into a garret apartment in a nearby town.

McKeag’s Meadow Trail

For a couple of months, it’s been nothing but upheaval, and I’ve scrambled to get any sort of training in. Finally, I’m sort of settled down, and the opportunity for a long run presented itself.

Last Thursday, I drove up to Sterling Forest, just over the New York state line, to take another shot at a route that eluded me last fall.

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Stonetown Circular Trail

If the Paris – Roubaix bicycle race is called L’Enfer du Nord — the hell of the north — then I submit that Norvin Green State Forest’s Stonetown Circular Trail qualifies as L’Enfer de Ringwood. The 55+ kilometers of cobblestone sections in the bike race are a severe test of bike handling and endurance. The technical, straight-up-and-down-the-fall-line climbs in Stonetown test a trail runner’s endurance and joint integrity.

Board Mountain

This spring, people have flooded social media with hundreds posts celebrating late season skiing at Killington, Whiteface, and Gore. Due to personal obligations, I wasn’t able to get in on the late season fun. In fact, my workout routine has pretty much broken down and I’m trying to rebuild it.

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