Friday, 11 November 2016

Mendon Trail Run 30K

My friend and coach, Heather, and I planned to do an off-season trail run together.  We were planning on running at Letchworth State Park until we found the Mendon Trail Run, which was incredibly cheap ($20 USD) and the same price for 20 or 30K, so may as well get our money's worth, right?

The 30K started at a very reasonable 9:30 am, which meant that I only had to get up at 4 am to make the 2 hour+ drive down.  Forecast called for mainly sunny skies and a high of 14, so I went with a short sleeve top and arm warmers.  Upon arrival, it was overcast and it was really damn cold just walking to the race HQ building.  Even though there was a roaring fire in the stove, I was still freezing, and fortunately I had brought a long sleeve top and changed.

map? I thought this was a trail race, not adventure running!

Everyone was given a course map, and since the race was organized by the Rochester Orienteering Club, I had a sudden panic that we'd have to navigate the course using the map as opposed to course markers.  Thankfully, the course was one of the most well marked I've ever run - plates marked with arrows at turns and forks blocked off with flags.  The Ultrasignup stats predicted a 4:28 finish - considering most of my 30K runs were usually 5+ hours, I would be ecstatic with any time under 5 hours.  At the start, I saw my DM friend, Wilt, such a nice surprise, after he missed the post ATB party this year. 

I always find it amusing when trail race directors describe a course as "completely runnable". There were rolling hills throughout the 10k loop, I walked the bigger hills, especially the calf burner called Kitty Litter Hill.  Each loop I ran a bit slower than the last, but Heather kept me moving and I took Shannon's advice to not linger too much at aid stations.  I fueled with Endurance Tap, oranges and pop from the aid station, and homemade kimbap.  I was quite tired in the last 5K and the cups of Coke I slammed were absolutely life giving.  We finished strong, well under 5 hours, not DFL and hours before the cutoff!

Kimbap with carrots, spinach and tofu.

It was fantastic to meet Heather in person for the first time, and we chatted so much that other runners commented on it.  Hopefully on my next (and 3rd) visit to Corning next spring, I will finally have an opportunity to visit the glass museum!

Post run beers in Corning.
On Sunday, I will be trying out adventure running at Raid the Hammer.  If we have to run through brambles like this, I will probably curse a lot more colourfully than the guy in the video.


  1. Great race report! Maybe I will do this next year if I can find some Canadians to make the drive down with me.

    Do you make the 3+ hour drive home in your own stink after the race?

    When you go to Corning, you can take a class and make your own glass craft. It isn't very expensive at all. I highly recommend you take the time to do this. I made a photo frame and put pictures of the people that went on the trip with me. I love it.

    1. I drove 1.5h to spend the night at Heather's house in Corning. The glass craft sounds really fun, I will keep that in mind!