VHTRC Newsletter
May 1995

[Editors Note: This is a copy of the May 1995 VHTRC Newsletter authored by President-for-Life Chris Scott. This was before the VHTRC Web site, back when you got a newsletter for your $10. (Yes, there has been no inflation in member dues.) The Chris Scott writing style is nothing, if it is not unique!]

Writes of Spring

Dang, almost three full months without word from the rampant rooter. Refreshing, wasn't it? The interim weeks have pressed resources (not to be confused with grapes or hams), some of it hinted at below (as in on this page, not at your feet); some of it just necessary recovery time between events; or hell, maybe I just blew it off. Regardless, you've gloried in the break, the club's saved some bostage pucks, and another tree stood for a few minutes longer... With that in mind, let's see how tersely curt and short this can be without jeopardizing quality hahahahahahahahahahaha!!!

History: Criminy and hominy, we trudge all the way back to Nancy and Rick's Catoctin Trail 35K/50K -- the weather gods blessed us again with snow just days before, but on race day the white stuff melted into muck rather than last year's powder. And with a bit milder conditions, the full 50K could be traversed in daylight. Personally, I missed the challenge of hopping rocks on the streams, but the melting snow offered sufficient opportunity to trash shoes. Finding the finish were Clapperman and Mills tying for 3rd, Derrick at 8th, et Strz, Anstr, Ed & Carolyn in the 50K, the Fulton Steamer & Lou having fun in the 35K. Great showing of folks, indicative of the Hamilton's terrific hospitality... The HAT 50K didn't have snow, but the sunny skies belied the cool temperatures brought in by the hard winds off the river. Phil (turning 50 at Catoctin, he ran 50K a day for five days...) and Jeff drew almost 150 runners for another splendid romp through the hills overlooking oh, what's the name of that river -- Mahogany, Schenectady, Raponnamahammock. Madman Joe led our field again in 5th with Fulton in 7th, Derrick et moi at 17th and Anstr, Larry De, Joe R, Gman, Strz, Ed, Marty & Carolyn rounding out our field... Numbers for the Potomac Overlook Trail 2.5/5/7.5 runs grew a bit from last year, but it remains a favorite low key cruncher through the park. Douglas Durham debuted as RD and, to his credit but sadly for him, established himself as a respectable candidate to do more of this insanity. Let's see, we still need someone to host a 6 day... Bull Run Run 50, as in '94, grew by 50%, and drew more heavily from the club roster to stage the event. While we expected to deal with some different dynamics in growing to 150 runners, I didn't adequately prepare for midday heat and humidity, they dropping some folks to wilted lettuce and straining our sanity in dealing with minor medical "emergencies." Hats off and high into the air to those who unreservedly committed themselves to making the event another success, the weather and me notwithstanding. And coups doughs to David H (3rd, 1st S Open), Scott (5th, 2nd S Open), Madman (6th), Stanleyman (8th), Derrick (10th, 3rd S Open), Strz (2nd Clydes), Frank (1st S Sr), Phil (1st 50 Finish), Paul, Pez, Larry De, Anstr, Doug, Carolyn (3rd S Open), Joe R, Marty (Rocco print winner) & Diane for finishing this bruiser... Close on BRR's heals, the inaugural Massanutten Mountain Trails 100 again brought out the best that our club could offer (at least as far as what the runners saw). Ed promised the toughest 100 east of the Rockies, and no one left disappointed. Studbiscuit Joe Clapper continued to shine as this year's posterkind, pressing John Geesler to the finish, and winning cases of beer for breaking the magical 24 hour mark (21 minutes to spare); and Mike Fiorito grabbed the second of the event's silver buckles by finishing 5th and winning first VHTRC member... For both events, we pushed a bunch of folks to contribute a load of time and effort to make each a success. Names and proper recognition would easily capture another page. For you dozens, please acknowledge the silent but profound THANX!!! that accompanies such unselfish help!!! ...

It's been a busy Spring for the club -- what changes? A couple folks have dropped (lackadooz), a couple have joined -- Welcome! Kathleen H and Joe R!! What's ahead????

Future:

Weekend Event (Host) [*denotes entry fee]
3-4 June VHTRC does an aid station at Old Dominion 100
a few wknds innamiddle Who wantsa to organize a training run?
15 or 22 July VHTRC Deck and BRR/MMT Hoorah Party!!!
23 July Patapsco Scramble 10K* (Mike Strzelecki)
5 August Howard County Striders 24 Hr Relay + 50&100 Miler*
?? August Midnight Moonlight Madness (Scott Mills)
16 Sept Women's Trail Half Marathon* (Renee & Jeanne)
30 Sept Quad State Quad Buster (Roger & Rick)
5-8 Oct Trail Run Across the Commonwealth / Andiamo* (Anstr Davidson)
21 Oct Mountain Masochist 50* (Dave Horton)
8-12 Nov Trans-MD Run for the Homeless* (Mike Strzelecki)
25 Nov JFK 50*
16 Dec Map Dit 50K (aka '94's Culo Grasso) (Joe Clapper)
and then a bunch of stuff into the New Year....

Hidden in the schedule are a few opportunities to discover some new territory, factored only by someone's creative cartographic interpretation. Don't go whacko on us, here, Carolyn or Douglas...

T's? For those who've already made wishes known, you've not been forgotten. The artist who did the BRR logos and the recent VHTRC signature logo (on BRR pocket and MMT sleeve) is refurbishing the existing VHTRC emblem, but has a couple higher priority work orders on his desk (the paying kind, ours being done gratis). If his work wasn't as good as it is, NWS his familial relationship, I'd blow it off and seek another. Revised plan #46C will have the logo in-house by July, with printing done hopefully by month's end. You won't be disappointed...

While we have some weeks ahead without incredible heat and humidity, hope to see some of you on the trails. After that, the horseflies win... and we'll have to seek far and wide for hospitable terrain. Promise/ threat -- you'll see another of these before June vanishes, both to better define the summer runs and delineate preparation for the summer party.

Glueckliche Faehrte (and be careful around whom you do it, too)!!

View from the Corner

Warning: the following contains language potentially interpreted to be detrimental to free-flowing thought and/or anarchy. Read at your own peril!

The VHTRC is now soundly into its third year's existence. If there was a focus at the outset (as I remember it, and memory is an increasing challenge), it encompassed two perspectives:

(1) we needed a sanctioned (read, insurance supported) organization in order to host events, Bull Run Run the initiating motivator after spending our first day on those trails and being asked (!!!) by Warren Doyle to stage an event there; and

(2) our small band of local yahoos expressed just enough interest in promoting trail running to a larger local audience and expanding our field of running friends.

Those two thoughts generated what we know today to be the VHTRC. And it's probably not an inappropriate opportunity to account for what we've achieved and for what still must be addressed, if our basic motivations haven't altered considerably (and I don't think they have).

Part II first. While the majority of our numbers have stated preference for trails, fairly equitably spread throughout is encouragement to engage in almost any derivation from the 10K road race "norm." The area abounds in groups and clubs focused on the sub-marathon road events. We need not add to that population, though we don't discourage participation, for certainly from those ranks emerge our own community. Most of you have probably also recognized that our club communications (i.e., these gordorful rags) don't get into training tips common to other venues, meaning that benefits derived from VHTRC association must be achieved through active participation in training runs and events. A noticeable percentage has chosen otherwise, but we'll remain patient with them, anticipating future loss of inertia (but we at least get one year's dues from them)... We rely on ACTIVE members, to generate active friendships, to produce a camaraderie common among even the wider ultra community. And now we have friends that spread across several states...

Part I. Our activities alternate between "formal" entry fee-related organized events (BRR) and informal but advertised, semi-disorganized funfests (Gary's Eagle Run). As our membership has grown to include folks who already had events on their plates (Hamiltons' Catoctin, Herr's Wild Oak), we've generated a full calendar of activities for our own and the general community's involvement. And though the calendar is full, it's fallacious to assume that we've attained mastery for organizing and staging events. Fortunately, the trail community retains a fairly forgiving attitude for race management (thus producing kudos sometimes blind to any one event's inner workings), but our organizing members also have experienced the spectrum's poles relative to quality productions, and we continually strive to offer the best events. With the calendar hopefully as full as it's going to be, our future now will involve improving upon, or continuing to hold a high standard for, what we already do. We can only do that with continued appreciation for our limitations and our motivations, blending the two amidst an atmosphere of trail camaraderie and respect for Nature's gifts, both deriving from the other part of why we're the club we are. We've proudly hosted popular events, and with your help, our respect in the ultra/trail community will continue to grow.

Make your Trails happy ones, and share them with others...

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