Another foggy, low cloud start to the morning when I looked out the window this morning. But that was how yesterday had started, so maybe things would clear for the 9am start of the Cranmore Mountain Hill Climb, which Snowman was running. We headed down to North Conway and found the Cranmore lodge filled with runners. We ran into our friend Dan, who made a funny comment about all the serious, skinny mountain runners around. Yup, it was a serious looking crew, and Snowman was wondering where all the more casual runners were so he could have someone to beat... somehow the words "Hill Climb" and casual runner don't seem to jive.... :-)
As we were chatting and Snowman was stretching, the skies opened up. It was pouring like crazy. Puddles were forming fast and rain was streaming off the lodge roof. Runners were huddled in the entry way, under the Inov-8 tent, under the timing tent. With a few minutes to start, I sent Snowman off into the rain, and stayed in the lodge. I didn't have any rain gear, and besides, I would have a great view of the runners as they came through the end of the first lap from the lodge deck. Perfect. I could stay dry and still be able to do some good cheering. It was once again odd to be a spectator at a running event, when I'm used to participating in the events I attend. I could have signed up this morning, but after yesterday's run, I might have been out there for a solid three hours. The Hill climb course was two 5k laps, up, up, up the ski trails and down. Not very kind of the body. So I accepted my fate as support crew, and chatted with a few other spouses and parents in the lodge.
I watched as the group of runners wound their way up the ski slopes, moving forward in a long colorful string up the mountain, until they were finally hidden from view by the low clouds and the trees. 25 minutes or so later, the lead runners started to come through. Our friend Kevin was in the front with one other runner, looking great. Others began to pass by the lodge, and the rain was letting up. It was a fun spot, as we were all along the railing cheering everyone on. When Snowman came through, he yelled up, "This is nuts. No one should be doing this." I yelled back, "You're the one that signed up for it!" This exchange got a good chuckle from my fellow deck mates.
As the last runners came through on their first lap, the rain had finally stopped, so I made my way down onto the grass to watch the finish from the ground. Kevin came in second, and Dan had an awesome finish too, looking strong. Snowman came in at 1:16, looking tired but still putting forth a good kick when I informed him that he had someone right on his tail. I still can't believe he wanted to run this race, which looked brutal, but I'm proud of him for a great race, especially given that he just did Mt. Washington last weekend!
Seen on the run (April 27, 2017)
2 days ago