Gabe Flanders here- a lapsed Miler returning to the fold. On April 12th, I had occasion to participate in the XTerra Merrimack River Run (more commonly known as, "The Rivah!") in Andover, Mass. This was my first time on the 10 mile, out and back course, and it was a blast.
Forecasts for heavy rains gave way to overcast skies that cleared by the end of the run. Luckily, there was still knee-deep water and plenty of mud on the course. After an entertaining speech from the RD, 183 people took off along the Merrimack. The course is mostly flat, with some short but steep hills to sting you out at 3 miles or so.
I was barely out of sight of the starting line when Kevin Tilton came hurtling back toward it. He turned in a blazing time of 57:46, over four minutes faster than his nearest rival. The Milers' own Dawn Heinrich (the only other Miler in attendance, as far as I could tell) prevailed in the Women's Masters, with a 1:17 margin of victory. Well done!
Personally, my achievements included following another runner off course and passing an 11 year old- twice. Still, I know I'll be heading back to "Run the Rivah" next spring. How about you?