Washed Away

Since a big rainstorm on January 25th washed practically all of our snow away, we have been running on a LOT of ice. While it has been fun exploring some new lakes and islands that are normally off-limits this time of year, I’m missing my snowshoes. Soon it will be spring; we need more snow before then!

My friend Deb is visiting town from Taiwan for a few weeks, and we spent a couple of days at a cottage north of town. Our big goal for our last day was to run up a big appetite on the trails at Wheeler’s Pancake House in Lanark County, “The Maple Syrup Capital of Ontario”, and then fill up on pancakes drenched with syrup after. It was a beautiful, sunny, crisp, late-winter day, one of those days when everything sparkles to a new height of beauty.

We found the trails that wound through the maple forest, and scouted them out with Kahtoola Microspikes for a loop before switching to our snowshoes. We happily discovered an untouched inner loop with undisturbed powder. It was Deb’s first time running with snowshoes, but she got the hang of it right away and would periodically sprint ahead of me, blowing the powder up behind her. Such fun!

Now I’m back to our ice-covered world farther south, but am keeping an eye on the forecast.


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 (http://www.healthandadventure.com), 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.

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