Total Pageviews

Thursday, June 27, 2024

Moats with Summer & Bluey

Took a trip up to my beloved White Mountains to catch up with two of my favorite hiking companions, Summer and Bluey. Summer just finished her PhD from Harvard University (So Exciting!), so her and Bluey were quite ready to stretch their legs and continue their quest to complete the 52 with a view. We chose to hike South, Middle and North Moat mountains totaling 10 miles and 4,000 feet elevation gain. This route took us through northern hardwoods, spruce-fir and pockets of exposed sub-alpine tundra on granite bedrock. We heard northern parula down below, black-throated green warblers on our way up, and Bicknells thrush above. Billberries, mountain holly, crowberry, pincushion plant and three-leaved cinquefoil kept our curiosity high. A nice day in the highlands with such great company.

Saturday, June 8, 2024

Minnewaska Grand Tour

A May day is as good as any day for a mountain marathon on the Minnewaska Grand Tour route in the Shawngunk Mountains (Gunks) just west of New Paltz, NY. What a gem! Minnewaska means “good water” in Algonquin, and Shawngunk means “smoky air.” The sweltering heat sure gave meaning to both today - it was quite hazy, and I had to use natural springs to rehydrate.

The Shawangunk Ridge geology is what remains of 450 million year old outwash from the Appalachian mountains to the east, and overtops an ancient ocean. 

I came across groves of old growth hemlock and spruce in gorges - a relict from the past. Blueberries, billberries, laurels and azalea were all in bloom. I even found populations of Carolina pincushion plant - a rarity in NY. Not to mention the scores of warblers I heard. 

A nice way to start a mini vacation before the busy season starts. Cheers!

Tuesday, February 20, 2024

Catawba Triple Crown

I took a quick adventure to Roanoke Virginia to find dry trail. I ran the Catawba Triple Crown along one of the most iconic sections of the Appalachian Trail, which traverses Dragon’s Tooth, McAfee Knob, & Tinkers Cliffs and circumvents the town of Catawba. The route is 35 miles with over 7,000ft in elevation gain. 

I love the geology here; 300 million year old orthoquartzite sandstone of the Tuscarora formation that makes up the “ridge & valley” province shaped by a mountain building event some 100 million years ago. I ran by Virginia pines, table mountain pines, southern red oak and chinquapin oak. Lots of wildlife, too. A good way see spring early.

Thursday, February 8, 2024

Pemigewasset Loop FKT

Right before Christmas, I set out to attempt my first full winter Pemigewasset Loop (Pemi) and left with the unsupported @fastestknowntime, shaving off over 5 hours from the record!

I’ve long had a tremendous amount of respect & appreciation for the danger, spirit and beauty of the Pemigewasset Wilderness. Being a 36-year old relatively new runner, I’m excited to sneak onto the board for a premier trail I care so much about during a time when records are getting thinner by the day in the White Mountains. I approached this effort at a moderate and safe pace with the intent to push myself, stay healthy, take the record and leave the door open for others.

I hope my effort inspires someone to break my record ASAP and to have a similar experience. A big shoutout to all the folks who sent me supportive messages over the course of the day. You kept me going!