Border to Shore Leg 8: The End of the Metacomet

Completed the Metacomet today. The final 5 miles, ending at the scummy Berlin Turnpike, were anticlimactic yet oddly satisfying in the accomplishment of this sub-goal. It gives us a minute to pause in the cold November air to remember what we’ve done this year:

Metacomet
Distance Duration Cal Burned   Climb (ft)
Leg 1 (3/11/2012) 6.95 1:16:24 988 943
Leg 2 (4/22/2012) 6.71 1:19:55 880 864
Leg 3 (4/29/2012) 8.68 1:46:44 1207 1288
Leg 4 (5/6/2012) 7.80 1:36:58 1088 851
Leg 5 (6/17/2012) 5.86 1:11:27 817 750
Leg 6 (10/21/2012) 8.65 2:11:56 1056 1094
Leg 7 (11/4/2012) 9.51 2:24:22 1221 1629
Leg 8 (11/25/2012) 5.04 1:02:15 632 482
Subtotal – Metacomet 59.20 12:50:01 7889 7901

Among training and running the Hartford Marathon and some other trail and road races, we polished off the Metacomet in eight segments. Plus, nobody got hurt! Nice. I had thought initially that we’d be able to do the whole run down to the coast this year, but I wasn’t accounting for how much time the Marathon training would take. Sixteen weeks is a pretty good chunk of the summer…

Leg 8 started out on Route 71/Chamberlain Highway where we left off. From there it was a steep climb up to the ridge line (very familiar start at this point). After a week of vacation and copious amounts of food and beverages it was tough to get in the swing of things, but I got in the groove after the first mile or so. As always, the hidden trap rock under the leaves made for slow going, but it made us appreciate the flat-ish, relatively rock-free sections.

Cold start.

Typical section of this leg of the trail before you hit the road segment

If you are trying to avoid shooting people, don’t put your tree stand in the middle of the trail.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It was quite evident that this section was newly re-routed to avoid new housing developments. Not quite as cleanly or intuitively cut, the trail was a bit tricky. I think they were more liberal with their trail clearing techniques in the distant past. Maybe it takes a couple sticks to the face until someone gets fed up and simply, but in a not-so-environmentally friendly way, cuts the limb back.

It was cold, windy and cloudy out today and the foliage was completely off the trees. At least there was lots of thorny brush and sticks from the fall storm to scrape us up. Still, way better than watching football or going to church on Sunday!

Lots of ankle-twisters under those leaves

The boys are clearly confused by the cattle gate. I navigated it perfectly on the first try!

Some wet spots out there – bet this can be pretty mucky in the spring

Rob flashin’ the Metacomet/Mattabesett/Menunkatuck trail gang signs. There aren’t many in our crew, but we’re tough.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After the first three miles, we ran into Orchard Road and ran out of blue blazes. We hoofed it up to the Berlin Turnpike where we parked at the head of the Mattabesett. Overall, a great day worthy of a good celebratory breakfast at the Pepper Pot in Southington. Next up – Lamentation Mountain. Maybe we can find time before it snows, or are we done until March? We’ll see.

One Response to Border to Shore Leg 8: The End of the Metacomet

  1. just a quick side note – who blazed this section of the trail? You couldn’t run more than 20 feet before having to stop to find where the trail went next!

    Not uncommon for the Metacomet trail.

    Still, very rewarding to finish the whole rocky, hilly, leafy, root-infested ankle twisting thing!

    Thanks for the post Jimbo!

    -tread

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