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Wanderers get "Chilly Cheeks" and other Frozen Extremities!

Neither 2-degree wind chills, nor 14 mile per hour winds nor frozen ground kept the Wanderers from their appointed trail race, namely this year's Chilly Cheeks 7.2-miler in Reading, PA Sunday, January 20th. Not only was it cold enough to freeze your eyeballs shut, but the monster of a course was not for the faint of heart. Projected to be the hardest course that race director Ron Horn puts out there, the race certainly did not disappoint. The first hill was a bush-whacking scramble up the side of a mountain as runners searched for any sign of a "trail." Other climbs were dubbed "Buster Hill," (busting every muscle fiber in your body), "Whaddafug Hill," (speaks for itself) and the notorious "Mt. Mudd," a mad, clawing push up the back side of a parking lot drop-off which had to be re-routed up a "trench" due to fallen trees and various shrapnel in the area. With a layer of crunchy snow still left in Reading, the down hills proved to be even more treacherous as runners risked losing their footing and slipping into oblivion on the jagged rocks below. Speaking of jagged rocks, there were "ankle-breakers" a-plenty however the Wanderers were victorious in that no ER visits were required.

Seven ballsy runners showed the field of 422 how it's done "Wanderers style." Chris Verry was out in front scampering to 33rd place in 1:05:22. Next, proving that Wanderers stick together in any kind of weather were Doug Dubrosky (40th in 1:06:47), Erik Johnson (41st in 1:06:49) and Josh Dennis (42nd in 1:07:01). It was a virtual conga-line of speed! Then it was Polly Jansen finishing 138th in 1:17:42 after charging by two guys on Mt. Mudd (with Chris' coaching). Matt Mauren who was cursing the name of Chris Verry for "encouraging" him to do this race, finished a strong 156th in 1:19:33. Anita Zalewski rounded up the Wanderers field finishing 359th in 1:41:24.

The Wanderers also had a terrific support team on board. Gabe Mauren, braving frostbite while stationed atop Mt. Mudd cheered the weary, wind-whipped Wanderers to the finish. Beth Mauman, on loan to us from the Pagoda Pacers was stationed at the 2nd water stop/beer stop providing what she dubbed "chewy" beer to the frozen runners. She also happily assisted in consuming the excess beer slushies so none would go to waste! Back at the ranch (the Liederkrantz club), runners were treated to hot coffee, cold beer & an Irish band while they swapped war stories of the carnage they endured. Next up, the Ugly Mudder Feb. 17th!

chilly cheeks
Wanderers chill (thaw-out) after the race.  L-R: Polly Jansen,
Gabe Mauren, Chris Verry, Doug Dubrosky, Matt Mauren


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