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A quick report on the
Mason-Dixon Longest Day 100K
June 20, 2009
Paul Melzer and Hunt Bartine hosted the Mason-Dixon Longest Day 100K on Saturday. The course starts in Susquehanna State Park and ends a few miles down river from where Rt. 30 crosses the river between York and Lancaster. I missed last year's run, but I can attest that the course has not gotten any easier and the rocks have only gotten more brutal. A few new observations for those looking to run this next year:
- I'm not sure how everyone finished, but I understand that Brett Pfieger finished in about 12 hours. That is truly impressive. If there was a subway there, I'd be suspicious. Instead, the performance is just to be admired. Just amazing. For most of us, the challenge is to finish in under 15 hours. For the record, my 9 p.m. finish meant I missed the sun rise to sun set challenge by 23 minutes though I qualified for the civil twilight to civil sunset finish. Hamilton Tyler finished after 11 p.m. while Mike Bur dropped at mile 50 after setting the pace for a large group of us for about the first 35 miles. Full results should be on the web site soon for all 15 starters. [Editor's note: the Web site.]
- Better Blazes. Yes, the trail has been reblazed and it is far easier to follow than two years ago when it was a navigation nightmare. Still, the trail is not up to Catoctin standards let alone MMT standards. So everyone got lost at least a few times. Me included. This run still requires the map and turn sheet. One runner -- I'm not sure of his name but he was wearing black -- got lost for several hours with only about eight miles to go.
- Lots of water. The three thunderstorms get everyone wet. Thankfully the final two storms were fierce but short. To me, the disappointment was the impact the excess water had on the course. The sections of the course that I remembered as spectacular were simply flooded. On the plus side, the kayakers were everywhere and clearly enjoying the high water.
Overall it was a great event and exceedingly well organized. The ending at Shanks Mare store on a picture-perfect summer night was fantastic. In addition, the volunteers could not be beat. Besides Paul and Hunt, VHTRC's Carolyn Gernand was out there as were long-time volunteers Dave and Roxanne Strine. Thank you!