Friday, July 8, 2016

North-South Trail Trek - Section #6

In May I hiked the last section of the North-South Trail (NST) from George Washington Wildlife Management Area to the northern terminus in Buck Hill Wildlife Management Area on the Rhode Island/Massachusetts border. From there I hiked another two miles on the Mid-State Trail to Wallum Lake in Douglas State Forest where my car was parked. It was an unseasonably warm and humid day and the lack of water and the constant ups and downs in Buck Hill began to wear me down. This was perhaps the best 13 miles of trail on the entire NST. Most of the miles were on single-track trail with only 1.5 miles on a gravel forest road in Buck Hill WMA.

 Bowdish Reservoir in George Washington WMA.

The rocky journey begins.

Striated and split rock.

Some company on the trail.

Barefoot hiking not recommended!

Crossing a boggy section.

 The long and winding road in Buck Hill WMA.
It doesn't show well in the photo but these stones were bleached white.

I saw many of these stone cellars on the Mid-State Trail in Douglas State Forest.

Reaching the Rhode Island/Massachusetts border.

More photos of my hike can be viewed here.

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Sea To Summits Tour Preview

One thing I liked most about my early days of ultra running was that it was a relatively unknown sport. Many races had a small number of runners and over time you would see the same faces and got to know most of your competitors and often became friends. Not that I ever felt like I was racing against other runners. It was more about competing against the distance, the terrain and myself. I think many other ultra runners felt the same way. We offered encouragement to one another during races and did what we could to help each other get to the finish line.

This has all changed.

Ultra running has grown tremendously in the four years I was away from the sport and small races are more difficult to find. Now, when I look at the names of finishers in New England ultras I recognize very few names. I did manage to find two small races last fall which brought me back to "the good old days" of ultra running past. I could run these races again this year and hope that the fields remain small but my desire is to look for new challenges and not to repeat the same from the past.

Which brings me to my next project, The Sea to Summits Tour.

The Sea to Summits Tour (SST) is an attempt to bring me back to my running roots when I ran for the pure joy of it. No racing, no crowded trails. Just me and the forest. The SST is a 340 mile route I created by connecting existing trails in Rhode Island, Connecticut, Massachusetts and New Hampshire. It begins at the Atlantic Ocean on the shore of Rhode Island Sound and ends on a mountain top in New Hampshire.  Along the way I will summit numerous mountains and smaller hills with over 111,000 feet of elevation gain and loss.

Sea to Summits Tour Route Overview

The Sea to Summits Route from South to North:
North-South Trail (red) - Rhode Island and Connecticut
Mid-State Trail (blue) - Massachusetts
Wapack and Cranberry Meadow Pond Trails (orange) - New Hampshire
Monadnock Sunapee Greenway Trail (green) - New Hampshire
Sunapee-Ragged-Kearsarge Greenway (red loop) - New Hampshire

I've already hiked to the northern terminus of the North-South Trail which is also the southern terminus of the Mid-State Trail (report will be posted soon) which leaves about 260 miles to go. Clearly, I wont' finish the entire route this year but I certainly hope it doesn't take as long to complete as my Bay Circuit Trail (BCT) journey. I plan to run some sections and hike others and I think this run/hike strategy over the remaining 260 miles will help me cover more distance in less time.

I'm looking forward to going old school.

Friday, July 1, 2016

Bay Circuit Trail Run & Hike Reports

The Bay Circuit Trail (BCT) is a 231 mile permanent recreational trail and greenway corridor extending through eastern Massachusetts. It links 57 communities from Plum Island to the shores of Duxbury/Kingston. 

I have completed the trail in June 2016. Below is a listing of my run and hike reports by section. Click on the links below for detail reports and photos of my Bay Circuit Trail runs and hikes.

April 2011 - Section 1A Plum Island to Rowley (13 mile run)
April 2011 - Section 2 Rowley to Boxford (20 mile run)
May 2011 - Section 3 Boxford to Andover (18 mile run)
June 2011 - Sections 4 and 5 Andover to Chelmsford (22 mile run)
June 2011 - Sections 6 and 7 Chelsford to Weyland (30 mile run)
December 2011 - Section 1B Appleton Farm Spur (12 mile run)

Photo slide show for sections 1 - 7

July 2013 - Sections 7 and 8 Weyland to Framingham (10 mile hike)
August 2013 - Section 8 Framingham to Ashland (15 mile hike) 
September 2013 - Section 9 Ashland to Sherborn (12 mile hike) 
December 2013 - Section 9 Rocky Narrows Loop (4 mile hike)
April 2014 * Section 9 Sherborn to Medfield (11 mile hike)
May 2014 - Section 10 Medfield to Walpole (12 mile hike)
September 2014 - Sections 10 and 11 Walpole to Easton (13 mile hike)
February 201 - Sections 11 and 12 Easton to West Bridgewater (17 mile hike)
May 2016 - Sections 12 and 13 West Bridgewater to Hanson (14 mile hike)
March 2016 - Section 13 Hanson to Pembroke (4 mile hike)
June 2016 - Sections 13 and 14 Pembroke to Kingston (18 mile hike)
Bay Circuit Trail End-to-End Stats

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...