Category Archives: 4 Mile

Running Across Lake Superior

It isn’t every day you get the opportunity to run across a Great Lake.  Especially Lake Superior.  My buddy Brad and I did that over the weekend.  Our families went up to Bayfield to check out the Superior Ice Caves and the Bayfield Winter Festival.  A part of the Bayfield Winter Festival each year is a race across the ice road from Bayfield to Madeline Island and back, known as the Run on Water. (this year’s winning time was 24:59).

Smartly for the weather, the race starts at 11am.  Sadly, for us this was too late in the morning for us to be able to check-out on time and not ruin the day for our families.  So we set out to run the same course a little earlier in the morning.

It was a surprisingly warm morning (and weekend) which we were not going to complain about!


Before we set out on the ice we had to make sure our YakTrax were installed.  Brad was wearing the coilly YakTrax Pro and I was wearing the new spikey YakTrax Run.  We both had decent traction given that most of the run was on sheer ice, think running on an ice rink!  This is the view from the Bayfield side of the ice road.  The road gets plowed and maintained by the County! 


The race course was pretty much already setup for us! Pretty low key! 


Here we are on Madeline Island at the half way point! They did have mile markers posted for the race, but no sign indicating the turn-around spot.  So we stepped foot on the island and then turned around! 


This is the view from the turn around, looking back at Bayfield. 


There were a few of these little signs reminding drivers to be careful.  The speed limit on the road is 15mph, so I guess it is to be extra careful! This year’s race also included a longer bike race that went 12 miles instead of the 4 for the runners.  I’m not sure what their course was.  But as we were leaving town we saw some people riding a tandem bike with a race number affixed to the handlebars! And it wasn’t a fat bike. 


Here is a picture I took of the ice.  It was really pretty in places to look down and see 2 feet worth of ice below you! 


We made it to the finish line in one piece! Neither of us fell so that was a great thing! 


Here is the GPS of our run! Straight across the lake and back! Pretty unbelievable! 


Our pace was pretty slow throughout the run.  We were taking shorter strides than normal and we could both feel it in our quads and hip flexors.  Shorter strides meant less chance of falling though!! 


Here is the Strava data from the run:

Running on an Ice Road

This past weekend we visited the Apostle Island Ice Caves and spend the night on Madeline Island.  Yes the Ice Caves are stunning and I’d recommend checking them out if you can sneak away before the ice melts!

Normally there is a ferry that runs between Bayfield, WI and La Pointe, WI which the town on Madeline Island.  However during the winter there is an approximately 2 mile road that gets plowed between the two towns.  This is a fairly wide road and gets closed due to high wind and snow as the crews work to plow it out.  When we left Saturday morning both the Ice Caves and Ice Road were closed, fortunately they were both open and ready for us when we got to them!

I was hoping to run on the Ice Road, but the place we were staying was a little too far and I didn’t have enough time for a longer run.  I do recommend that if you are looking for a place to stay on Madeline Island that you check out Paul on

Every year there is a big race across the Ice Road.  The race is a 4.2 mile out and back on the Ice Road.  The 20th Annual Run on Water will be held March 2, 2014 and by all appearances looks like a fun event.

From their website:

The 20th annual “Run on Water” is a family fun event open to people of all ages and skill levels. Participants can choose to run, walk, ski, snowshoe, bike, skate or even skijor the 4.2-mile course on the famous “ice road” across frozen Lake Superior from Bayfield to Madeline Island and back.  The race will start on the Bayfield side.  Participants must go around a stake on the Madeline Island side about 2.1 miles away, then return to the start.  Participants can choose their own course to turn the stake – on the ice road, off the ice road, straight or curving.  All entrants will be started and timed together.  Awards will be given to the top runners in age/gender group categories, and the fastest finishers in non-running modes.

One of these years we’ll go up for the Bayfield Winter Festival and I’ll get a run across the Ice Road. The festival looks to be a lot of winter crazy fun.  Have you ever been to the Festival or run across the Ice Road? Or any ice races?

Enhanced by Zemanta

Race Recap: MDRA Mudball Classic

Mudball ClassicYou can’t complain about a free race! That being said, I was quite surprised when my Garmin said 4 miles at the end of the race, it was after all the MDRA Mudball Classic 4 miler.  In the 3 years we’ve lived here, this is the first of the free races that I’ve run.  I look forward to doing more of them.

Obviously, low-key this trail race at the Quaking Bog was a perfectly fun way to get back into the race scene.  It was 36f with wind chill of 22 at the start, fortunately it was quite sunny.  I was perfectly dressed: shorts, long sleeve, and singlet with gloves and ear warmers. Took off the ear warmers mid-second lap. Before the race started I wasn’t sure if I’d dressed properly or not, so I was quite glad as we started that it felt good.

The race was 3 1.34 mile loops starting just up the trail from the Quaking Bog parking lot.  Within the first 30 feet you were heading up a hill.  There are a million different options for running through the Quaking Bog area and I think there were 3 or 4 “major hills” and then a few smaller ones.  I positioned myself towards the middle of the pack and went out really slow.  I had no idea what to expect since I’ve only done slow base mileage.  My goal was to have fun and finish strong.    I ended up deciding to push up the hills and recover on the downhill and flats.  This worked out pretty well and I dropped 3 or 4 people doing that.  They would catch up on the flat and then fall back on the hills.

Mudball Classic coulda been muddier!One of the tougher uphills had a tree fallen over the trail, but it was easy to jump/steeple over.  The race photographer was there on one of the laps and I’m sure he got some great pictures.  If I find the pics, I’ll post a link or post them.  This added a fun challenge!! There actually wasn’t a lot of mud, except for at the finish area.  This was a fairly large muddy area that got worse each time we ran through!! It made me smile each time.  There was a table with water on it around the start area and I paused each time by to grab a drink.  I actually stopped and drank, because there was no sense in trying to drink while going up the hill!

The course was marked with flour or chalk (white arrows) which were pretty easy to see, except for in some of the grassier areas.  A young boy almost missed a turn on the first loop and in the last lap I almost turned too early (both would have been major short cuts)!

When we came through the second lap someone was yelling out times and I was at 23 something.  I felt like that was a pretty good pace and guessed that I was under 10 minute pace and would finish well under 40 minutes.  I remember previous run in this area last year when I was in shape that were hard to be under 10 minute pace so I was happy with that.  I made sure no one passed me in the last lap and really only had one person try but he ended up 10-15 seconds behind me.

Overall only one person passed me and stayed in front, sadly it was a woman, but she was 3rd overall female I think.  I finished in the top 20 (17) and 3rd in my age group. Official Results! Great pictures by Wayne Kryduba.   I ran the 4 miles in 34:54.  Quite pleased!!




Great morning, great race!!

Enhanced by Zemanta

Race Review: Drumstick Dash

First, Happy Thanksgiving!! I hope you and your family have a wonderful day of giving thanks.  I know I am thankful for much, includes my wonderful wife, friends, running, and you my fellow runners and blog friends!

In my first-ever Thanksgiving Day race I completed the 4.5 mile Drumstick Dash hosted by Tuxbro in Broad Ripple (Indianapolis). According to their website over 5,000 signed up for this 5th annual event. 

I traveled to the event with the Rayl family (Brian, Kelly, and Logan), all three of them completed the race! We all ran good races and had an excellent morning together!

The race began at 9am between Broad Ripple High School and the shopping plaza with the Running Company (event sponsor).  The high school’s electronic sign said the temperature was 32 degrees, the car thermometer read 38, and the official temperature from Tuxbro says 37.  So it was somewhere in the mid-30’s with gusting winds at the start.  Due to the wind I wore tights and a long-sleeve shirt and other runners were wearing as little as a singlet or shorts all the way to a guy in a parka and pants! It spit rain a few times and afterwards there was some white stuff falling too!

This race includes a turkey chase so we watched the 6 foot tall turkey ride through the crowd, high-fiving everyone, before he got about a minute running head start.  His captors (female and male) later finished the race 39th and 83rd (respectively), but their sprint from the start netted them some type of award. There were also some great costumes!

I ran with Logan for the first mile which ended in a neighborhood but included some of the major thoroughfares of Broad Ripple. We took it out at a comfortable pace and kept it relaxed while the large crowd sorted itself out.  They had people holding signs with pace times at the starting line so that you could line up in some type of order, which made for a pretty decent starting pack. We came through the first mile at 6:22.

The entire course was on roads, so nothing too exciting happened.  There were some people along the streets cheering, but not a lot.  The streets were a little wet from yesterday’s rain which caused some puddles in little dips and the side of the road.  One concern was that we were all taking the turns pretty close to the curb and there were leaves collected in the gutters which made it a little slippery.  Logan pulled away from me and I came through the 2nd mile at 6:28.

A water stop was available at about 2.5 miles which was also at the top of a hill.  Nothing real serious here, but just something to make you think about your stride and pace.  I took it in stride and I don’t think it bothered me too much.  Throughout the race I was continually passing people while only occasionally being passed as well.  Right after the water stop was the turn off point for the short course.  They offered two distances the 4.5 (which was timed and scored) and a 2.6 mile course which was not scored (they had a clock so you knew your time).  I came through the third mile at 6:36.

This next mile wound through a neighborhood circle.  Going into the neighborhood I could see the runners coming back out.  They were probably the back of the first packs. During this 1/2 mile loop.  I threw in a surge to try and catch the next pack in front of me. I continued passing groups of people as we turned onto Broad Ripple Ave and came through the 4th mile in 6:38.

The last 1/2 mile had a slow downhill, a quick uphill, and then a nice downhill finish! The finish line wasn’t marked overhead with a banner or anything so I wasn’t sure exactly where it was.  At the top of the hill two, what appeared to be, college runners took off for a sprint finish.  The first guy took off and the other one yelled at him and then chased him down.  It was funny to see, but didn’t really inspire me to try and sprint to the finish! I did pick up the pace and passed a good amount of runners in this section to finish the half-mile at 3:08.  My overall time was 29:14 (6:30).

I’m completely fine with that time, I had no expectations and haven’t done much running or any speedwork for a few weeks.  It would have been nice to beat Logan again (I beat him at Pop Weaver 5K), but oh well!! There was lots of food and water at the finish area.  Starbucks, the Noodle Company, and the Sunflower Market were all giving products away.  The Running Company had an amazing sale, but most of the stuff had already been picked over. The event shirt was a very nicely done black, Brooks Technical shirt!

All proceeds from this event benefit the Wheeler Mission in Indianapolis. The race slogan was Move Your Feet So Others Can Eat!

Overall this was another great event by Tuxbro.

Technorati tags: , ,
Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

Race Review: Turn up the Volume 4Mi

A beautiful fall morning with temperatures in the mid-60’s setup an excellent morning for any running event.  After navigating around the closed and partially closed streets of downtown Indianapolis (several events were occurring in the area) to avoid having to pay for parking we enjoyed an otherwise flawless event.

This was my first Tuxbro managed event and I was very pleased with the whole thing.  The event was the Turn Up the Volume to BLAST Ovarian Cancer with all proceeds benefiting Ovar’Coming Together a local Ovarian Cancer awareness organization. Over $18,000 was raised by participants in the 4 mile run, 3 mile walk and 1 mile walk.

All three events began and ended at Victory Field which is a great venue for a race and for sports fans in general.  We were not allowed on the field but could walk through the seats and be right next to it.

The 4 mile course began with an out and back down West St before heading towards Circle Center, then turning to go past the RCA Dome.  The rest of the course was through the industrial area just west of downtown making a big square.  The 3 mile walk was the same course minus the first little out and back and the 1 mile walk was the first little out and back only.  The entire event was staged so that no group interfered with another and the 1 milers were still finishing when I finished.  The run was the only scored event and racing chips were used!

Overall the course was flat with a couple of small grades that wouldn’t be noticeable in a car, these were mostly going under the railroads and then coming back up onto the road near Victory Field.  The course had 2 water stops, although the second one was setup but the volunteers were just leaning against the wall.  I’ve been told that at events like this it is the job of the sponsor (Ovar’Coming) to train the volunteers.  No worries since I didn’t want water at the end because I was being chased down and didn’t want to slow up.

I was very pleased with my overall race. I had no expectations coming into it since I had just had a season PR at the Thursday night races.  I wanted to come out and push a little bit so I was excited to have ran a 25:44 (6:26) with mile splits being 6:12, 6:18, 6:38, and 6:34.  This placed me 12th overall and 3rd in my age group! Fellow Anderson runner Mitch Novy won the event in 21:18 (5:19) much to his surprise.  He received a gift certificate to the Athletic Annex.

The overall festival type event was designed to raise awareness of Ovarian Cancer and to honor survivors of the 5th deadliest form of cancer in women.

Technorati tags: , ,
Zemanta Pixie