March 16, 2015

Preliminary results for the 4th TARC SPRING THAW 6 HOUR

The calm before the storm. 

Below is a link to the preliminary results 
for the 4th TARC SPRING THAW 6 HOUR.
March 15, 2015

THE link with splits: LINK 

Please note that where you see the words "**missing," it reflects that the backup timers and Norm were certain that the runner completed the lap (during the last hour of the race) but did not have that runner's EXACT time.  

If you notice a big discrepancy in your laps and/or time, please let Norm know so he can take an even closer look and so we can get the official results to UltraSign Up by next week. Thank you!
His email is:

Also, UltraSign Up results reflect the miles completed in the six hours and not the times or splits. 

Conditions were beyond tough and you can say that you ran a trail race on the day that Boston broke its seasonal snow fall record with 108.6 inches!

Some of our timing volunteers!

This post will be active until April 1, 2015
to allow runners to record splits.

March 08, 2015

Snowshoe Stomps in Harold Rafton Reservation

Preparations for the TARC Spring Thaw 6 Hour 
race course are well underway!
Gathering at the Scout Camp Area 
in Rafton Reservation, March 7, 2015

While the amount of snowfall in New England this winter is no surprise to anyone, runners might feel like this year’s course is a bit different. No year has been exactly like another — 85 degrees in 2012, mud in 2013, and slush and mud in 2014. 
What will be our theme for 2015?

Hard-packed and well traversed along 
the section by the Fish Brook.
March 7, 2015

Lots of happy hikers! 
March 7, 2015

"Cookie-dough" snow by 
the VIrginia Hammond Parking lot. 
March 7 2015

To help make the race day as best as can be for the runners and volunteers, I organized two different outings to introduce people to snowshoeing, get a sense of the trail conditions, and create as clear a path as possible through vast blankets of white. While some spots will be tough and mushy for racers—Harold Rafton Reservation never looked so beautiful draped in all this white.
Die-Hard Helpers for the 
February 21, 2015 snowshoe hike.

The first outing on February 28th drew a hearty group of eight. We trekked the course on snowshoes to pack down most of the 3.5-mile loop. What a great day in the woods, which was accented with “Nature Nuggets” by David Dargie. We’ll never miss a shag bark hickory tree or forget how to tell the difference between crows and ravens.
David Dargie, Land Manager and AVIS Trustee,
 explains the Bay Circuit Trail course marking system.
February 21, 2015

On Saturday, March 7th, 24 volunteers —from A.V.I.S, T.A.R.C. & G.A.C. and other mysterious places —gathered at the Wood Hill Middle School to enjoy and let’s be clear to stomp down the entire 3.5-mile loop. I was delightfully bowled over by the turnout! 

A generous group about to break trail —
Starting from the Wood Hill MIddle School. 
March 7, 2015

We worked our way through crispy snow and made some (not all) preliminary course marking with orange tape. For veterans the course was ever-so-slightly re-routed in the first ¼ mile.  (NOTE: On the afternoon of March 14, the course will be marked more thoroughly and a trail conditions report will be posted on Facebook, as well.)

At Two Benches (where the stick meets the candy on this lollypop-style course) Bill, John, Paul and others transformed “Two Marshmallows” into our familiar “Two Benches” areas. 

These benches mark the spot where the out and back section (the stick of the lollypop) changes to the loop that’s run in clockwise direction. It’s along the SINGLE-TRACK, out and back section that will prove the most congested in the first hours of the race. As courtesy, give way on the trail to runners heading INTO the start/finish/loop-check area. 
AVIS Land Manager and Warden, Ken Doran and 
his ax-wielding friend, Pete,
take a breather during their wood-splitting morning. 
March 7, 2015

Another special aspect of Saturday’s outing was viewing the hard work completed and in-progress at the Scout Camp area. A little bit after the 2-mile point (approximately on the “hill” before the scout fire) our group gathered to appreciate how much Ken and Pete accomplished in several weekends prior. 

“Chop your own wood and it will warm you twice.” (Henry Ford)  

March 7, 2015

Behind the scenes, Ken Doran, a warden and land manager for AVIS, and his friend Pete (who could be THE original Sasquatch), felled dead trees, cut up and hand-split firewood for the scout area, cleaned and shoveled out the pit, and unburied sitting logs around the fire ring. They also cut and cleared some huge trees blocking the course. So please be sure to thank them for their 15+ hours they’ve played in the woods on our behalf.

Ken Doran, Pete and Emily Trespas 
(Race Director, AVIS Warden)
March 7, 2015

Coming up Helen's Trail alongside 
the open field by the Virginia Hammond lot. 
March 7, 2015

For more information and a course map and additional rules regarding the race, please visit links below.

Start and Course MAPS for the 2015 TARC Spring Thaw 6-Hour

The 2015 Race is full. 
No race day registration.
NO bib transfers allowed. 
NO Snowshoes.
Yes to Microspikes/Yaktrax.
Lots of Happiness to go around.
Volunteers receive 
a special gift of support
until supplies run out. 

March 07, 2015

Start and Course MAPS for the 4th TARC Spring Thaw 6-Hour (March 15, 2015)

The 2015 start line 
is the same as in 2014.
It worked so we're keeping it! 

The start line, which is still on school property, spreads out the runner field and eases bottle-necking in the first single-track section of the loop.

Please note that we are not allowed to run on/around the playing fields NOR on the town roads (without a $$$ police detail). Although our race field is relatively small, please seed yourself appropriately for safety.

The race's start line is located by the High Plain Elementary School sign (off of High Plain Road). It is ONLY for loop #1.  You will not return to this start line again after 9 am. 

Be ready to run your race AND at the start line for 8:55 a.m. Allow approx. FIVE minutes to walk/jog from registration area/timing to the race start line.

The 1/2- mile additional distance in Loop #1 will be accounted for in your results. Your loop time is recorded at the completion of each loop by running—in one direction—through the special timing chute.
  • Loop #1 is a distance of 4 miles.
  • Subsequent loops (#2, #3, #4, etc.) each measure 3.5 miles. 
The timing area (NTS/Norm's Timing System), runner loop check-in, AID/drop bag area, and the finish line are located near the Wood Hill Middle School sign (off of Cross Street). Volunteers can check in here, too. 

If you do not complete the 3.5 mile loop by 3:00 pm, the accrued miles of YOUR PREVIOUSLY completed laps will be your recorded mileage in official results. Runners that come into finish—after the 6-hour time limit— forfeit their last loop. If you finish in over 6 hours—even if by less than a minute— this last loop will not be counted in the official results (but you know you ran it). We need to draw the line somewhere...

Also, you do not need to run for the full 6 hours to make the race results. When you are done for the day—please tell the official at start/finish so we know not to send out a search party or famished Yeti. Results of runners who complete over the marathon distance (26.2 miles) will be sent to Ultra Running Magazine. Take up any timing issues with Norm, "The-Great." He makes things right in the world.


If you are unable to complete a full 3.5-mile loop by 3:00 pm, you have the option of a SINGLE-USE, out-and-back to the 1-mile marker FINAL partial loop (for a total of 2 additional miles). This option is available ONCE to each runner and you MUST tell the start/finish table of your intentions BEFORE heading out or it will not count. A race official will be at the 1-mile marker. At the end of your partial loop you will complete your race event by running through the chute and reporting to the start/finish officials.

Sign up on our "TARC SPRING THAW 6 HOUR" Facebook Page for updates:

See you very soon Trail Animals!
Emily "Trail Pixie" Trespas, Race Director