2013 7 Sisters Trail Race

Today’s weather at the 7 Sisters Trail Race was spectacular. Debbie ran this legendary race for the 14th time in 15 years. The kids and I saw her at the start (which was nuts as usual), again on her return leg where the Metacomet-Monadnock Trail (M-M) crosses Mountain Road on the way to the summit of Mt. Holyoke.

2013_7 Sisters Trail Race 29

2013_7 Sisters Trail Race 60

2013_7 Sisters Trail Race 374

I’ve written about the rocky and rugged 12 mile (6 out/6 back) race on the New England Scenic Trail (M-M) many times, so there several posts in my blog archives that cover history and past races.

2013_7 Sisters Trail Race 336

Today’s race was notable for the record number of entrants. Results for this race are normally not posted for several days, but I bet there are 500 or more finishers, which is ridiculous. It’s amazing how this race has grown in popularity. The rugged nature of the course is the likely reason because other New England Grand Tree Trail Running Series races see far fewer runners. That’s too bad because there are some beautiful courses at some of the smaller events.

2013_7 Sisters Trail Race 258

7 Sisters has its painful charm. I saw a fair amount of sprained ankles, bumps, bruises, and cuts. I didn’t run this year, but I trust Debbie’s judgment when she says that there were too many people on this narrow rocky trail. It’s single track 95% of the way and with the out and back format, the congestion is a potential safety issue.

2013_7 Sisters Trail Race 96

Despite all of the newbies 7 Sisters, we saw a lot of our friends from the New England trail running community, including many club-mates from the Shenipsit Striders. The abundant sunshine, deep blue sky, and mild temperature permitted everyone to lounge on the grass after the race. The organizers moved the parking, registration, and post-race refreshments to a “The Bunker” located on Amherst College property up Military Road adjacent to the Bare Mountain.

2013_7 Sisters Trail Race 125

I found results on Coolrunning for 26 other running races for 5 May in Massachusetts alone. There must have been even more races, plus Connecticut, so running in the spring is definitely growing in popularity, which is a good thing.

2013_7 Sisters Trail Race 206

After watching the start, we drove over to the Mt. Holyoke side of the course. The gate on Mountain Rd. was closed again this year because of the ongoing construction at the Summit House. We parked and walked up the road to where the trail crosses on its way to the summit and then back down to the Connecticut River. We missed Debbie on her outbound leg, but we saw her on her return leg. She was in 2nd place, but ended up third. She wasn’t far behind first or third.

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Her time was much slower than her personal best from the early 2000’s, but she still had a blast in the woods today. I’m proud of her 14 finishes. I wonder how many other runners at today’s race have that many finishes?

2013_7 Sisters Trail Race 359

We lingered after the race and had a picnic lunch. Then, Debbie and the kids visited the Eric Carle Museum where they did artwork.  Then they went for a bike ride on the Norwottuck Rail Trail. While they were sightseeing, I went for a long bike ride. I went back to Mountain Rd. and did six repeats from Rt. 42 to the summit and back. It was a good workout. After the last climb, I spent a little time on the summit taking in the awesome views.

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The only hiccup was when I returned to Military Rd. to find my Subaru behind a locked fence. I purposely moved my car outside of the parking lot and on to the road to avoid a fence, but I missed the second fence farther up the road. I tracked down a ranger, who was helpful and contacted the Amherst College police for me. They sent an officer out after 30 minutes and he helped me liberate my car. I completed the days adventures by reuniting with Debbie and the kids in Northampton for a nice dinner. Maybe I’ll run 7 Sisters again in 2014. Maybe…

2013_7 Sisters Trail Race 452

See you all at the Soapstone Mountain Trail Race in two weeks. Debbie is the Race Director and would LOVE 500 runners. Just pre-register so we have enough veggie chili and pickles!

2013_Post 7 Sisters Ride & NoHo 12

2013_Post 7 Sisters Ride & NoHo 23

2013_Post 7 Sisters Ride & NoHo 28

Race Results

Race Photos (Printroom)

4 Responses to “2013 7 Sisters Trail Race”

  1. 1 photonfanatic 6 May 2013 at 7:31 pm

    I searched high and low, trying to see if you had left the keys near the car, but to no avail. Next year, we’ll alert everyone about the time limit for parking your car at the “Bunker.”

  2. 2 SimWebb 6 May 2013 at 11:41 pm

    Hey Scott, thanks for documenting the race!
    Mind if I use the picture of myself (red water bottle) as a profile picture around the web? Love that shot!

  1. 1 2013 Wapack and Back Trail Race | Life Adventures Trackback on 12 May 2013 at 2:50 pm
  2. 2 2014 7 Sisters Trail Race | Life Adventures Trackback on 4 May 2014 at 7:21 pm

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@thecubscouts #pinewoodderby never gets old. Pack 157 Bolton, Connecticut #cubscouts So that little injury caused by my @renocxnats crash on Saturday afternoon wasn’t so little after all. It’s a broken leg (fibula). Prognosis is good, but it hurts like heck. My blog post report with blow by blow details is linked in my profile. #cxnats #teamhorstsports @horsteng #crossspikes #crossisboss - - -

This #lifedeathcyclocross stuff is true!!!! I crashed out of the Singlespeed Championship @renocxnats (on the dreaded off-camber) but not before having more fun. @artroti43 raced on the frosty course ❄️ at day break. 🚴🏽 We met a lot more @horsteng #crossspikes customers. I hung with little bunny hopper 🐰 Miles, the Junior 11-12 year old Silver Medalist.🥈I cheered for Nic, who represented @the_ccap in the Junior 15-16 age group. @sportstert and Iva came down from Tahoe to cheer LOUDLY for me. 🎺 I got my badly sprained ankle taped and iced. I had a beer. 🍺 I’m even looking forward to my red eye flight home ✈️ . Best of all, I’ll see @trailrunningmom and the kids on Sunday. I can’t explain the sensation, but despite the pain, I’m ready for next #Cyclocross season to begin... after some rest. #teamhorstsports #cxnats #horstengineering @parkavebikeshop #crossisboss #lifedeathcyclocross #crossiscoming You could say that at least for this week, I’m married to my #bicycle - - -

@renocxnats #cxnats @seven_cycles #sevencycles #teamhorstsports #horstengineering #crossspikes @horsteng #chapelofthebells #Cyclocross #lifedeathcyclocross Good day representing @horsteng at @renocxnats in the 45-49 age group. It’s a great course. The wind was blowing hard, but the sun finally came out. I’m happy with 37th place but should have made a move to get to 29th, which was 30 seconds ahead. That’s a long way when you are going flat out and cramping. 4,500 foot elevation was a factor. I’m disappointed that they cut one lap of my race when I wasn’t close to getting lapped by the leaders. You train this hard and come all this way; and you want to get the most racing for the $ and time invested. They only let 25 riders do the full six laps. The only positive to come out of that was that I watched fellow New Englander @adammyerson execute a perfect final sprint to win the Stars and Stripes again. Teammate @artroti43 had a good ride too. 
@seven_cycles #sevencycles #horstengineering #teamhorstsports @bicycleseastct #crossspikes #cxnats #renocxnats #Cyclocross #crossisboss @therichardsachs didn’t have the race he hoped for but it was still great to see him @renocxnats and “pit” for him. He said he officially started his second off season, but first of 2018. @artroti43 and I played soigneur/mechanic for 90 minutes, but minus the massage! atmo #renocxnats #richardsachs #teamhorstsports @horsteng #crossspikes #hauteframebuilding #Cyclocross #crossisboss #lifedeathcyclocross I previously hadn’t published this image, but it recently received an Honorable Mention in the 2017 @appalachianmountainclub Photo Contest for the People Outdoors category. Check out my blog (link in profile) for the interesting story of his photo (shot with this iPhone 6s), a trip report from this amazing Maine adventure, and past contest history. I love this image of two of my favorite women. I’m barred from submitting images to the 2018 contest, but I’ll be back in 2019. #appalachianmountainclub #baxterstatepark #katahdin Congratulations to Master Park, the Park Family, and the entire team at Park’s U.S. #Taekwondo at the Grand Opening of the new facility in the former VFW building. Our kids love it! So much better than being next door to the pawn shop and liquor store.😊#tkd 🇺🇸🇰🇷 This morning, the @trinitycollege Main Quad was bathed in beautiful sunshine ☀️but it was frigid and the wind was blowing! ❄️ The chapel was packed with an overflow crowd to celebrate the (shortened) life of a lovely friend. She will be missed. #circleoflife 🌏

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