Sunday, November 30, 2014


NEO Trail will be again hosting their Festival of Running, Saturday, December 20, at the Log Cabin, Mill Creek Park Youngstown.

You can run whatever you like-this is a Fat Ass. The idea is to wind back to the Log Cabin about 1 pm to enjoy some food and refreshment provided by the NEO Trail Club.

General starting time for URINEO will be 8 am from the Log Cabin. Other groups may be starting with an earlier start time.  If you want to run earlier, with a group, please ask either Jim- or Kimba kimba90@gmail, or on the Facebook site, and we will try to hook you  up with an early group.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Slim Pickins 2014

Slim Pickins

This weekend was our 8th annual Slim Pickins weekend.  For the history of Slim Pickins, I recouped that on Friday.  This was the farthest NEO Trail had traveled for a weekend SP run.  This occurred since we had been thrown out¹ of Linn Run, our original destination.  The Professor then said he would like to visit Great Seal State Park, which is the park where the “Not Yo Momma’s” 100 Mile Race takes place in Ohio.

 Rich and Kimba got 7 miles on the trails at Great Seal Park on Friday, to do a bit of a recon before the others arrived the next day.  It was a bit of a challenge to follow the stellar cartographers that ODNR employs to make maps for state parks in Ohio.
bloggers view of map
Blogger’s representation of sucky ODNR map
Really, the map was not much better than this.

We did have a nice cozy cabin, over at Scioto Trail State Park, about fifteen miles away:
Scioto StatePark cabin

For the last few years, NEO Trail has been trying to get a cabin or a hotel suite where all can gather after the run, break bread, chat, and other “fairly normal” activities that we are known for.

None of the NEO Trailers had ever been to Great Seal State Park, which made it a bit difficult to try and describe anything about it. In fact, where we parked and started was where we thought the 100 mile race started. We were in the wrong place! Tim Smith, from Middleton, parked in the correct spot but still managed to find us down trail.

The Polish Surplus had just arrived in the midwest, or heartland, or whatever you want to call the Buckeye State. It was a warm 15 degree at the start of Slim Pickins.
Slim Pickins 2014
We then ran over to conquer Sugarloaf Mountain.

Whew! That was a good climb up Sugarloaf!

Sugarloaf Mountain Ohio
Top of Sugarloaf


The guys ponder a cairn. We were doing our best to follow Rob Carroll, the RD of the “Yo Momma’s” Race along with the ODNR map. henceforth known as the “sucky map”. There was much stopping and starting, not listening to the Professor’s navigation tips, and playing on rocks.  We did run into Rob Carroll, who helped show us where we were on the map.

When we got to our water cache, where Aid Station Two is for the YM race, it was much more runnable, and hence we did much more running.

DSCN3246 DSCN3248
It was soon figured out, with all our screwing around, and compensating for the slowest runner’s pace (Kimba’s) it wasn’t going to look like a second complete loop was going to happen.  Kimba stopped after one loop and drove The King, The Prof, and Slim over to the farthest point south to run some more miles. Tim went on to climb Sugarloaf Mountain and head home. It was nice to share trail with a new runner-thanks Tim!

The Yo Momma’s course: this is a tough loop. We knew it would be hilly, but there are a bunch of ups and downs and several big tough climbs and descents. With the course being multiple loops, this is indeed a challenging race. We agreed this race was much harder than Mohican or Burning River.

There was also a run on Sunday morning. We woke up to first snow!  We again tried to follow a ODNR map, which didn’t quite pan out, but we spotted the fire tower anyways.

Kimba and Slim at fire tower DSCN3261
We ended running almost five miles on Sunday back to the cabin, a good way to shake out the kinks and muscles for the long drives home.

The best part about Slim Pickins is saying “see you in a couple of weeks” as URINEO, our club Fat Ass at Mill Creek Park, is December 20.  Another good time had by all!

¹ we weren’t actually kicked out of Linn Run. We had reservations, but the park decided to close the cabins down for cleaning and renovation.