Mt. Wachusett

It was a good day on the mountain today.

You could see clear across to Boston from Princeton, MA.

I started using an old strategy 40-second run/ 20-second walk.  All the way up to the top.

It got me there.  The 20-second walk allowed enough rest that I was able to run all of the run portions to the summit when most had resorted to power walking.

While cool at the base, it heated up with the sun glaring down on us as we neared the summit.  You could feel its presence on your skin.

I reached a maximum elevation of 2,026 in seven seconds faster than last year.

All in all, I felt Mt. Wachusett got my head thinking right.

I was surrounded by some friends as we crossed the “King of the Mountain” finish pad.

To my front, Diane Levesque, a 64-year old from Rochester, NH and to my rear Barry Saunders from Reading, MA.  Barry was in my car for Mt. Washington last year.  I continually wonder – why was Diane so happy and what WAS Barry transfixed by?  Me on the other, my face gave away the fact that I had pretty much pushed my body to the limit reaching the summit.  But, nonetheless, I feel as if I still looked strong.

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It was really cool being surrounded by “my friends” both in front and behind.

I caught up with Diane on the descent through trails and since the “scoring” portion of the race was complete (you score your Mountain Goat points at the summit) there was no need to push the pace.  Diane and I jibber-jabbered all the way down toying with Ray, an older Mountain Runner (completing his 17th year of the circuit).

I love the camaraderie and encouragement of the group.  Mountain runners understand that getting to the top of a mountain ain’t no joke – young or old.

One of the mountain runners commented that I should be “Mayor,” I know so many people.  Hey, it keeps me going – up, up, and up!  Anywho, please vote for me.

So, there you have it – three in and two more before I can claim the coveted title of Mountain Goat.  Will post the official USATF standings when I have them.

There are not one but TWO mountain races at Cranmore next weekend.  Saturday is the championship and the “counting” race and then Sunday is a fun mass ascent to the top.  Heck, I might as well do both.

I always stay at the lovely Kinsman Lodge with Sue and Chet.  For years upon years, I have been their guest.  I love Franconia Notch – the peacefulness and solitude fill my soul. And, not to mention that my favorite poet, Robert Frost’s homestead is only a mile or so down the road.  Sue and Chet are like old friends and this inn holds a very special place in my heart.  I took this photo one November during my annual Thanksgiving stay.  That is Cannon Mountain in the background.

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And, I adore the little town of Littleton.  Littleton and I, we get each other!  It is written all over town.

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