Race Summary: T.A.R.C. 1/2 Marathon Trail Run

10:03 PM
A few miles west of Boston, lives a small quaint town nestled in a slight valley between Interstate 95 and Interstate 90 named Weston, MA.

On main street you’ll find your obligatory Walgreens drug store, but it’s not like any Wallgreens you’ve possibly seen before. The store seems perfectly plucked from the past and set cutely on main street in all it’s vintage glory.

I’ve learned one thing about Boston during my brief layover and that’s Boston, despite being a progressive multi-cultural densely populated metropolitan city, Boston believes in holding on to it’s past.

There is a lot of history here and you can almost feel it as you run among the trees through the backwoods through historic stone walls that once seperated land plots. Your mind wonders of the things these hills and trees have seen.

Everything from Revolutionary events, to simple day-to-day life away from the infamous tea party harbor backyard block party out in the woods, to folks navigating these parts in their quest to find freedom in the north.

T.A.R.C.; stands for Trail Animals Run Club. They laud themselves as “...the original trail running club of the Boston-metro area. The club’s membership consists of men and women, who enjoy and participate in the sport of ultrarunning and trail runs. Members are from all over the United States with a concentration of runners in New England, Upstate New York and Canada.” [source]
The Spring Classic is the kick off with distances ranging from 10K, 1/2 Marathon, Marathon, and 50K!

With recent rain and SNOW! (yes snow!) There were several areas comprised of a substance known as mud to many. The soil is rich and fertile, so the mud is dark and gives the ground an overall softness which was a relief to my tired feet (someone ran 15 miles the day before around Boston).

But the beauty and scerene nature of the trails is not what is enchanting about the TARC Sping Classic. It’s the people.

It is said, trail runners are a different bread of runners. TARC is a diverse group of folks who just want to come out and have fun for a spell. Sit around and chat, meet new people, socialize, and enjoy the activity they love and respect.

The start confused me slightly as there was no starting mat. We all gathered together at the trail head and I heard “GO!” And off we went. I cautiously looked behind at the finishing mat, and asked someone nearby did we need to cross it to start, “nope, have an enjoyable run."

And enjoy the run I did!

Took a spill around mile 2.5, when a tree root (they call them ground snakes) reached out and grabbed my foot while I was trying to take a photo.

Fortunatley all teeth are intact and the phone survived.

Around mile 4 I began to settle in. The tral became clear to me. As we wisked our way through the county side with a couple of out and back looped segments.  

The air was crisp (cold at the start).  Being on terrain I was unfamiliar with was rewarding, challenging, and fun.  I felt like a kid running through the woods for a spell.  

The terrain is unlike the desert I'm used to, but the techniques and lessons are the same.  Eyes down, high knees, light feet, and stay agile.  Float like the wind.  Then face plant!  LOL!  

I love to say how my trail running folks back west are the bestest folks in the world! I have to admit, this crew gave them a good run for the number one spot. Friendly cool people who just want to relax and enjoy the day.  Got to meet so many people.  Just one problem:  Massachusetts has this cool climate control issue that my thin desert blood didn’t jive too well with at the start (I got over it though).

If you’re looking for a trail run or an ultra in the northeast corridor, check out the offerings from TARC. Good group of folks with runs in some very beautiful historical settings. And the seafood! OMG! Did I mention the people?

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