Friday, August 19, 2011

Tour de Vermont, Part 2

Continued from part 1.

We had run 17 miles in the blazing sun and we were in the middle of effing nowhere.  We had done a lot of talking, laughing, praying and suffering already and we were only partway through day 1.  With some actual running under our belts we were able to tackle the fact that logistically, we really hadn't thought this thing through all that well.  It was, in fact, going to be impossible to literally run across Vermont.  On the plus side, my hangover was gone.

But most importantly we needed some lunch.  After sucking down some water we made a plan: we needed to find a place to eat lunch, visit Hill Farmstead Brewery, and find a place to camp for the night.  The we could worry about our "afternoon" run.

We headed down into the town of Greensborough with Chris and me in Chris' truck and the Hudson brothers and Dan in Marks car.  Apparently the only thing in Greensborough is a gas station/grocery store where they pump gas in a crosswalk at a busy intersection and they have a deli counter but they don't make sandwiches to order.  We bought the place out of pre-packaged sandwiches and ate on the town green at a picnic table.  Actually there were only 5 pre-made sandwiches and 6 of us but Kyle (good sherpa) improvised and bought some groceries, including a cucumber, and making his own gourmet creation.

Come inside or we'll call the cops.
After getting some food in our bellies and checking out the local beach and/or freakshow, we made our way to Hill Farmstead Brewery.  This place was quite literally in some guy's barn on the family farm on a hilltop in Northeast Vermont.  The brewer is clearly an artist, if not the best salesman.  Later that night, Kyle did a dead on impression droning, "It's named after my grandfather.  It's an American Pale Ale.  Just drink it."  The beer was well worth it, though, and if you ever somehow find yourself in Vermont's Northeast Kingdom, definitely stop in.  All 6 of us did a tasting of the 7 beers they had available and also bought some beer to take home.  I bought two 750's of a Grissette named "Clara" since, well, that's my baby's name.  It was excellent, as were just about all of the beers we tried there.  The ambiance was non-existent as we were literally sampling beer in a garage and they didn't even open the doors so we could get some air until it started to get downright uncomfortable in there but the beer was legit.

With food and some beer in our stomachs it was time to figure out where we were going to stay that night.  It was a lot harder to figure that out then we had figured.  We had a campsite reserved in at Lake Elmore for the 2nd night, but there was NOTHING between where we were and there.  After some debate, we decided to head over toe Lake Elmore and see if we could get in there for Friday night as well since we had already given up on connecting the dots across the state.  Mark took a wrong turn and then blew a tire on a dirt road a mile from the campground so while the Hudson pit crew changed the rubber, Chris and I went to try and talk our way into the sold out campground.  The girl at the ranger's shack was originally from Georgetown, MA.  Jackpot.

After the quick tire change and then setting up camp, Mark went to the grocery store from some food to grill then we headed out for a run to get ourselves over 20 for the day while the sherpas headed out for a bike ride to try and earn their beers.  Chris and I went about 4 miles for a 21 mile day, Mark and Dan went a little longer. We all took a swim in the lake then settled in for some food and some beers.  It's amazing what you can accomplish when there are no women involved.  Other than the fact that we'd run 21+ miles in 95 degree heat, it was just like a guy's camping trip at that point.

Time to kick back and relax with some beers and some laughs.  Tomorrow would be another day with more miles, more heat and more hills.


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