Monday, November 28, 2011
This past weekend I had the honor of running some of the Foothills Trail in SC/NC with some folks that were running the whole thing. I just started out with them at Midnight and ran the first 14 miles from Table Rock State Park to the entrance to Laurel Valley where I had left my trusty Jeep.
Starting out were Lester Farmer, Mimi Hughes, Naresh Kumar, Mark Hickman, and Psyche Wimberly. Watching them go out into Laurel Valley while I headed home for a shower and a nap left me feeling a little guilty. I would not see them until about 11 hours later when they would arrive at Whitewater Falls.
I brought my accordion and occupied a little time waiting for the runners to get to WWF by playing to the trees and trying to figure out a song for them to come up the pretty monstrous hill to the parking lot. I ended up picking out my best effort of Eye of the Tiger. So, when I or someone else spotted someone at the bottom of the hill I would let the Survivor hit loose. I enjoyed it, but the grueling climb that the runners had just pushed up left them with less than an enthusiastic look on their faces.
Mark came into WWF first and then left with Chad Henderson pacing him. Psyche arrived shortly after Mark's departure, then Naresh. Each of them ate, changed out some clothes, and refilled their water. A couple of them had a beer. A little bit later Lester came in and threw in the towel. He had been puking his guts out in Laurel Valley and had gotten his fill o' fun. A little while later it got dark and we had a couple of phone calls with Mimi trying to reel her in to WWF. After one of the calls, a pack of coyotes let out this mob of noise like they were giving something their best effort. That led to uneasy jokes about waiting to hear back from Mimi. Scott Hodukavich ended up heading down the trail to help her get to the last little bit up to the parking lot where she called it an evening.
I ended up driving Mimi down to Oconee State Park where I called it a night and headed back to my home in Seneca. Congratulations on everyone who started out and a special hoot and holler to those that finished!
Results of folks traversing the trail can be found on http://www.foothillstrailultras.com/