The Legend of Bubba

I remember talking to a friend a few years ago and I was telling her about all the signs of wildlife that I see while trail running. Bear scat, deer droppings, wolf poop, etc.. She quickly replied that she didn’t tend to see many of those things in her neck of the woods, but did see a lot of Bubba droppings. Bubba droppings I asked? Yes, she said. You know, when you are out on the trail and you see where Bubba and the boys have been out walkin’, huntin’ and drinkin’ and casually drop their empty cans of Budweiser on the ground. Those are Bubba droppings. Well, that kind of stuck in my head for a while.

As I’ve previously mentioned, I am training for the Rock and Ice Ultra ( in March. I will be competing in the six day, 225km stage race. Participants have to run, usually while wearing snowshoes, while pulling all of their supplies in a pulk (sled) behind them. This will be a very challenging event to prepare for both physically and mentally.

Even tough we don’t have snow where we live yet; one of the best ways I could think of to train for an event like this was to start pulling a car tire attached to a rope around my waist during some of my runs. The resistance will be a little heavier than a sled gliding over the snow, but should make things feel easier when I do switch over to a pulk. So, I needed to find a car tire to use. I took a quick look around our place, but realized that we hadn’t kept any around, as we always dispose of them for recycling when we replace them.

Just then, I remembered the Bubba droppings. There is a trail that we regularly run on where I’ve seen a number of beer cans, garbage and yes, old car tires. So, off I went for a run and sure enough came across an old car tire that was perfect. I roped it around my waist and dragged it home.

Since I am going to be spending a fair amount of time training with the car tire, I thought it only appropriate that I should name it. Hmmm, what would be a good name for my new training partner? I tried to envision a little more about the car tire, his background and personality to find a suitable name. Let’s see, we rescued him from a pile of garbage, probably likes bad beer and can picture him having a spare tire around his waist (ok, he actually IS a spare tire). What could be a better name for my new training partner than Bubba?!

Bubba and I will be doing quite a bit of training together over the next little while. I just hope that his affection for bad beer and a portly midriff doesn’t rub off on me.


About the author

Sara Montgomery and Derrick Spafford

Derrick and Sara are trail runners from Eastern Ontario who discovered that running on snowshoes in the winter months is a great way to enjoy their favorite trails year-round. They competed in their first snowshoe series (The Mad Trapper Series in Low, Quebec) in 2005, each finishing 2nd in their respective divisions. Plans for 2006 are to return to the Mad Trapper, to take in some races in New York and Vermont, and hopefully cap their season with the U.S. Snowshoe Championships in March, as Canadian guests. Derrick runs a company, Spafford Health and Adventure (, which specializes in coaching and event promotion. He is currently planning an annual snowshoe race to be held in the Kingston area, starting this winter.