Ascent of Wachusett Mountain on 2016-05-29

Climber: Dave Dunham

Date:Sunday, May 29, 2016
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
Peak:Wachusett Mountain
    Elevation:1998 ft / 608 m

Ascent Trip Report

This was my 20th time running the Wachusett Mountain race, and I was pretty fired up driving to the race. Maybe I had too much coffee on race morning? After signing up and bumping into SO MANY familiar faces it was time to head out for a 3 mile “flat” warm-up with a big group of CMS runners. The group included new member Ed Sheldon who was back on the scene after taking nearly a decade off. He would be among the top 50+ runners in the race. The field looked quite strong as I saw teammates Erik Vandendries and Jeff Hunt along with Gate City Strider Brian Ruhm, Dirgio’s Jeff Walker, and Whirlaway’s Craig Fram. Dang! That is a solid group of runners!

I quickly changed into racing flats and did another mile over to the start line at the bottom of “Mile Hill road”. Temps were already in the mid-80s and of course the sun broke through the clouds right before the 344 of us assembled headed off. Things settled out pretty quickly as we got into the 5% grade. At ½ mile I was in about 25th place and moving up. Erik V went out pretty hard (he is a very strong climber) and was a good 10 seconds up already. I hit the mile in 7:20 after 400’ of climbing. Soon after I caught Ed Sheldon but was falling further behind Erik. We turned into the park at 1.2 miles and dropped 30’ over the next ¼ mile. Jeff Hunt went by me as we both grabbed a cup of water. It was hot! Erik was now 15 seconds up in a good back-and-forth race with CMS teammate Tim Mahoney.

I tucked in behind Jeff as the climb got tough again (260’ of climb in ½ mile from 1.5 to 2). We passed a couple of guys and started making some progress on closing the gap with Erik. I could hear Jeff Walker behind me (he has a Paul Hammond level of grunting when he runs which is a dead give-away that he is close) as we hit the 2 mile mark in 14:50. With less than a mile to go we were still looking at another 500’ of climb. I was getting into a good groove now as the grade steepened (stretches of 15-20% grades). At 2.5 I pulled away from Jeff and continued to close on Eric and Tim. On the final turn Erik peeked back and I was only a few seconds behind. He found another gear and powered in for a senior age-group win 4 seconds ahead of me. The top 7 50+ all finished within 33 seconds. Great competition! Next up: Pack Monadnock 10 mile mountain race (June 5).

Top 10 seniors
2 DAVE DUNHAM 52 21:57 CMS
3 JEFF HUNT 51 22:08 CMS
5 BRIAN RUHM 51 22:19 GCS
6 JEFF WALKER 50 22:24 Dirigo
7 ED SHELDON 51 22:26 CMS
8 CRAIG FRAM 57 22:56 WRT
9 DOUG JANSEN 53 23:41
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:1198 ft / 365 m
    Total Elevation Loss:100 ft / 30 m
    Route Conditions:
Road Hike
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:1198 ft / 365 m
        Gain Breakdown:Net: 1098 ft / 334 m; Extra: 100 ft / 30m
    Loss on way in:100 ft / 30 m
    Distance:2.9 mi / 4.6 km
    Route:Mile hill & the "Up" road
    Start Trailhead:Base of Mile hill road  900 ft / 274 m
    Time:21 Minutes
Descent Statistics
GPS Data for Ascent/Trip

 GPS Waypoints - Hover or click to see name and lat/long
Peaks:  climbed and  unclimbed by Dave Dunham
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Note: GPS Tracks may not be accurate, and may not show the best route. Do not follow this route blindly. Conditions change frequently. Use of a GPS unit in the outdoors, even with a pre-loaded track, is no substitute for experience and good judgment. accepts NO responsibility or liability from use of this data.

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