This is how our fearless TP leader, Kris Hinrichs, summed up conditions at our annual WI TP FA KM (Wisconsin Trail People Fat A** Run at Kettle Moraine State Forest).
The run began and ended December 31 at the Nordic Trails, the start-end of both the Ice Age 50 and the Kettle Moraine 100. For those familiar with the KM100, we ran the race route out to Emma Carlin and back, starting and ending with the ski trail but then putting most of our miles on the Ice Age.
So how did Kris come to her sh*tty conclusion about this year's event? It certainly wasn't the turn-out. Our non-event had one of its highest 50K finisher rates at about 25. Though the run wasn't really an event -- can't let the DNR think we are hosting a race without permits -- the finishers were indeed real. Or at least I think they were... I think therefore I run. Something like that.
Besides our FA runners, we also had about a dozen Fluffy Butt participants -- those who choose to run anything under 50K.
Several ran about 21 miles (a shortened version of our FA course), others a bit less, perhaps even a bit more.
But the sh*t -- I've gotten off-topic and forgot about the sh*t. Was there a dysentery problem? None that I know of. A pack of dog-walkers with poor poop-pick-up skills? Again, I didn't notice such an issue.
Instead, I believe that Kris' comment had to do with the weather. At a time of year when our trails are generally a fluffy white, they were a slurppy brown. A "sh*tty" brown, if you will. On Saturday, the Eve of New Year's Eve, it was delightfully dry and pleasant. On New Year's Eve day itself, it simply was not.
Though, it could have been a lot worse; a lot sh*ttier. Weather reports showed an 80% chance of rain for Sunday. They were 100% right! [BTW, why are weather reports more often correct when it comes to predicting bad weather than good?]
At the 7 a.m. start, there was a mild drizzle. Temperatures were about 40. The skies were dark -- flashlights would have been handy for the first 15 minutes or so. Many of us were thoroughly confused at this point -- and we hadn't even begun any New Year's Eve merriment. It was dark, but the trail seemed different. Were we already lost? Coming back in the light, we realized that the DNR had cut down trees and re-routed some of the trail, making it better for skiing, should it ever snow again in southern Wisconsin.
Although it was stressed over and over that the FA was a non-event (again, government agencies and their compulsive need for permits whenever two or three gather), Tom Bunk was kind enough to place trail markings for our non-existent course. He and the lovely Lorraine even placed some REAL beverages for the participants in the non-event. Many thanks for their efforts!
Speaking of Lorraine, if you have met her, you know that she is a well-manicured woman. Fluffy hair and fashionable togs at all times. However, Sunday at the post-run eat-a-thon at the warming cabin, she REALLY looked to be in far better shape than the rest of us... most of whom looked as though we had slid through piles of sh*t. How did she manage to assemble herself so? Looking at the weather reports on Friday, she decided to take an early start and do her FA run the day before, as did Julie Schroeder. They ran while the weather was nice so that Lorraine could come and welcome us the next day, dressed in her Sunday best.
Hey, it was a non-event. What difference did it make if a person started on Saturday or Sunday? Both days begin with the letter "S."
We included them in the results below.
But back to the sh*tty weather. Though it rained most of the day, it wasn't nearly as bad as many expected it to be. Only once or twice did we get stuck in a downpour, and never for long. Winds were nasty in the beginning, but tapered on the way back. A few people ran like it was actually a REAL event (Craig Bunk in four hours!) but most of us just slid along and had fun, celebrating the last day of 2006 in our own sh*tty way. [Fresh off of ski-school, Ann Heaslett said that she tried skiing several sections of the muddy trail, only to slide off her feet and on to her bottom... but then come to think of it, that's often how Ann skis too, so it was a good cross-training effort! :) ]
So that's the sh*t on our WI TP FA at KM! Happy New Year from the land of cheese!
50K FINISHERS (our apologies if we missed anyone -- we had an honor-system sign-in sheet at the end, so if a runner didn't sign-in, we may have missed him or her):
Craig Bunk: 4:00
Kevin Setnes: 4:40
Ann Heaslett: 5:04
Christine Crawford: 5:05 (early start)
Jason Dorgan: 5:05
Parker (I'm a New Papa!) Rios: 5:20
Todd Egnarski: 5:22
Tom Bunk: 5:25
Craig Swartwout: 5:36
Kevin Radel: 5:48
Kathy Rytmen: 5:55
Shana Scheiber: 6:00
Dave Dehart: 6:24
Mary Gorski: 6:33
Gardar Middleton: 6:33
John Rodee: 6:33
Dave Cameron: 6:37
Jim Blanchard: 6:42
Lorraine Bunk: 6:50 (early start - Saturday)
Julie Schroeder: 6:50 (early start - Saturday)
Steve Lind: 7:00
Kathy Siolan: 7:40 (after doing HUFF 50K the day before!)
Pat Gorman: 7:40 (also did HUFF)
Matt Erbele: 7:40 (Matt, did you do HUFF too? Sorry, I can't remember.)
Kris Hinrichs: 8:10
OUR FLUFFY BUTT RUNNERS INCLUDED (my apologies to those we may be missing):
Timo (Come Run the Mad City 100K!) Yanacheck
Larry Hall (Sorry Larry -- we don't know if you did 50K or ran short with Beth! He might really be an FA and not an FB)
Kathryn (I'm Tapering for Disney) Dunn
Casey (I Ran HUFF Yesterday and Am Not as Goofy as Gorman) Lopez