Monday, June 6, 2011

Rivered Again -- The Longest Day 2011

The river can be cruel. I lost a poker tournament earlier this year on the river. Final table. Head to head.  Way ahead after the flop. Even better after the turn.  My opponent reached out to shake hands as his fate seemed sealed.

Then came the river card and crushing defeat. But the king of diamonds couldn't compare with the cruelty of the Esopus River on Saturday.

I felt so prepared with my pack stored in a dry bag lashed to the raft. Safe and secure--or so it seemed.  But one mental mistake and the pack was plunged into the swollen river. In a blink the class III rapids swept it out of reach.

I raced along the rocky shoreline, desperate to catch the runaway bag. But it was useless. I stared in disbelief. Helplessly watching as the bright orange bag bobbed through the rapids. Then in an instant it was gone. My gear. My race. My racing budget. All gone. Done in on the river.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

How'd They Get So Wet . . .

All week the forecast called for a rainy day on Mother's Day. Fortunately, the forecast doesn't control the weather. So on an unexpectedly nice Mother's Day we took Lynda on a canoe trip down the Brandywine River.

While waiting for our van ride up the river, we saw a group of adults come in from the river soaking wet. We've canoed here before and only gotten a little wet. In early May the river was still cold, so it didn't make sense that they would get so wet intentionally. Then Lynda put the jinx on us by wondering out loud “How'd they get so wet?”

Sunday, April 3, 2011

The Oak"Bourne" Supremacy

The agents: Kristie and her squad of 6 BFFs
The mission: Locate 8 checkpoints hidden in Oakbourne Mansion Park and complete the team challenges before time expires.


Sunday, March 13, 2011

2600 Divided By 9

Just a Map and Water--No Other Provisions

How much adventure can nine 12-year-olds have in 2600 acres of woodlands?  Well, we found out on Sunday at our first ever Adventure Race Birthday Party in Ridley Creek State Park.

The trash talking started early when we split the boys into teams of three.  But talk is cheap.  The course would separate the contenders from the pretenders and the whiners from the winners—trust me, there's gonna be some whining before this is all over.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Start 'Em Early

K-rocks has been champing at the bit to race this year. I found the perfect event for her first race—a 5 mile trail run in Ridley Creek State Park—the Media Mud Stain. Between karate, hockey and weeks of running, she seemed ready, but we decided to go for a test run a few weeks before race day. After 1-1/2 miles, it wasn’t looking good.  Something just wasn’t right. Her faced seemed too red, like she was overheating. But it was a cool fall day, and she only had on a light jacket. I decided to take her jacket, and suddenly it was like a whole new girl. Only forty-five degrees out, and she's running through the woods in a tank top and shorts. When she finished with a sprint, I was sure she was ready.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

WHY? (AC Marathon)

So far my post-marathon routine has consisted of zombie-like wandering while my brain and feet battle over whether they're allowed to stop and sit down—which all the run gurus decry as a painful decision. Eventually my feet realize they don't need to listen to my brain, and I sit down. Sunday my feet won the post-race battle in Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City. My support team of Kristin, Mom and her friend Mrs. H watched as I joined other racers in the Hall--wrung out and spent. Mom finally asked a young guy
near us the obvious question:
“Why do you guys do this?”

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Griesacker Race--the descent that made the climb worth it

Anytime a race makes me feel younger than what my license says . . . well that's a good day of racing. At the end of the Wilmington marathon I felt 75 and I swear buzzards were circling. But not today. Today was 30 years the other way.