NJTrail Series Wildcat Ridge 50K

20160813 NJTrailSeries Wildcat Ridge Shirt

Saturday, Aug 13, 2016.  Heat Index of 106 degrees.

50k in almost 8 hours.  In a day when the temp was over 90 degrees, with a heat index of over 100.  And the course was no joke either.

A 10+ mile loop within the Wildcat Ridge Wildlife Management Area, the course is mixture of rocky towpath trails and blazed single track trails.  There’s a fully stocked aid station at the Start/Finish, and at the 4 and 9 mile mark (same station).  An unmanned water station was added at the 7mi mark because of the excessive heat condition.

The 50k promptly started at 7am.  I had a cycling undershirt, and I was already drenched with sweat even before reaching the 4mi aid station.  I took it off and ran shirtless from there on. It was extremely hot and humid.  Good thing I had extra pairs of socks in the car.  I changed socks every loop. I was carrying a single water bottle on the first loop, but decided to wear my hydration vest, with 2 water bottles, going in to the second (and third) loop.  It was a good decision because a single water bottle was not even enough to get from one aid station to the next.

I did a combination of jog and hike the whole time.  And when I was getting too comfortable with the hike, I’d tell myself, “A slow jog is faster than a fast hike“, forcing me to jog the runnable parts.  From my calculation, it took me under 2:30hrs per loop, taking extra time to rest and refill at the Start/Finish before the second and third loops.

Big thanks to Rick and Jen for hosting this no-frill event.  And to that kid at the 4/9mi aid station, who single-handedly provided support to the crazy runners in a day like this.