DION Eastern Ontario Snowshoe Running Series – Contest

As we announced yesterday at the Red Barn Snowshoe Race, since one of the series winners (Sara Montgomery) happens to also be related to the owner of Spafford Health and Adventure, we have decided to have a contest to award her pair of Dion 121 Racing Snowshoes to one lucky participant.

Describe in 100 words or less your interpretation of your favourite race in the 2013 Dion Eastern Ontario Snowshoe Running Series.

Contest Rules:
1. Open to participants (or volunteers) who competed in any of the 2013 Dion Eastern Ontario Snowshoe Running Series races.
2. Entries must be posted below or on the Spafford Health and Adventure Facebook page.
3. Contest closes: March 1, 2013
4. Winner will be chosen by a selection panel and announced on March 3, 2013.
5. Good luck!

WIN a pair of DION 121 Running Snowshoes



  1. Westbrooke – The sun was warm, the snow light and the mood energizing. Gathering in the clubhouse was less a competition and more like a reunion as jokes, jabs and laughter warmed the winter air. With the call out of the anticipated word…“Go”, we sped forward with as much snow flying in the air as blanketing the ground. The forest was nothing short of gorgeous with the sun breaking through snow heavy boughs giving us a glimpse of why nature is the ultimate. Upon crossing the finish line, smiles and laughter once again returned. Best race ever.

  2. Kathy Webb says:

    Being a current non-runner, I only took part in one snowshoe event this year – the Frontenac Park race. I was one of several first-timers but never felt unwelcome or out of place, and was very impressed with how friendly and encouraging everyone was. I loved running on snowshoes and got hooked right there and then, even though I could barely walk without pain for several days afterwards! My goal now is to start running on a regular basis and upgrade my “antique” wooden snowshoes so that I can take part in more races next year. What a great sport!
    [Thanks Sara for giving us the opportunity to win a set of new snowshoes]

  3. Sylvie King says:

    I would have to say that the Red Barn Switzerville event was definitely my favourite. It was held on Derrick’s parents farm, and we were greeted in true country hospitality, the smell of a warm fire, singing and guitar playing, and tales to be shared. We were blessed with some snow earlier in the week, making the trail a lot of fun. I enjoyed running through the fields, through the woods, and up that nasty little hill (thanks for the rope-assist)! After the race, there was some really good food, the warm fire, and lots of awesome prizes, both for the winners and some draw prizes. I truly did enjoy myself, and will definitely be back to participate next year — hopefully, I’ll be able to hit all five events!

  4. Oh I am going to love reading everyone’s entry what a fantastic idea. They are beautiful snowshoes.

  5. Erin McDougall says:

    Sunday’s Red Barn Race was my first snowshoe race, and I loved it. In such a beautiful setting, and with such gracious hosts you couldn’t go wrong. I did however, underestimate how hard showshoe racing would be- I’ve seldom felt so spent at the end of a race. The competition was fierce but friendly, the course was challenging but lovely, and hanging out afterwards with everyone was really nice. The only way it could get better would be to win the snowshoes! I’ll be back next year, hopefully with my own Dions, and will race even harder!

  6. Interpreting a race. Which race will it be? The race where I remember to close up the back pocket of my jacket, so it doesn’t fill with snow? The race where within the first 100m I don’t feel as though my entrails will soon be my outrails? The race where I win a pair of coveted Rosemarie’s socks? The race where more positive, fun encouraging people come out to race? The race where the entire field goes left on the trail and I go right and cross the finish line first;-) It’s a race I haven’t run yet in the Dion Snowshoe Race Series. It’s a race next year, maybe a year after that. The best race is yet to come.

  7. sandy richards says:

    I am not a seasoned snowshoe racer but do enjoy the sport. This year I particpated in Batawa and Switzerville races. Both had challenges but I truly enjoyed the switzerville experience. The trees and tight track allowed you the serenity that the sport draws me to. I enjoyed the course because the loop allowed me to get my bearings and plan my finish. The rise of the final hill and the faint smell of smoke meant you were nearly there. The gathering at the end was a great finish

  8. Audy Tallack says:

    Frontenac Park – This is where it all started for me in 2010 when for the 1st time I ran in snowshoes.
    I pushed through the snow that 1st time and got past the point where I was looking to be rescued from the woods, then a magical moment happened for me when I crossed the finish line and I felt in love with snowshoe running. The beauty of snowshoe running is that you never know how a race is going to go as it all depends on the conditions on the day; practice helps, but no amount of training can completely prepare you for what you may meet on the race.
    Frontenac is very special for me and I’ve done this race since 2010: the drive there, the happy volunteers that always greet you like old friends, the competitors from near and far, the deer I’ve encountered just before entering the park….ALL of these makes it one of my favorite days of the year, see you there in 2014 :)

  9. Gilles Parisien says:

    Switzerville Race: The smiling faces upon arriving and the huge camp fire already going, you knew this was going to be a great way to end the Dion snowshoe race season. As a RD myself I always try to see what others make work and what Switzerville had will never be duplicated!!!
    Derrick’s smiling face as racers walked to pick up their bibs and his parent giving you the huge welcome smile! to their country home was a great way to start the race morning.
    The trails where in great shape and knowing that this is where Derrick trained was special!
    it was mentioned that the trails hit all the special spot the land had to offer and they were right.
    The old cabin tucked away along the trail was a real pleasure to see. I will be back next year with hopefully more snowshoe runners. Thank you so much Derrick and Sara!

    I would have to say that the Red Barn Switzerville event was definitely my favourite. It was held on Derrick’s parents farm, and we were greeted in true country hospitality, the smell of a warm fire, singing and guitar playing, and tales to be shared. We were blessed with some snow earlier in the week, making the trail a lot of fun. I enjoyed running through the fields, through the woods, and up that nasty

  10. Gilles Parisien says:

    Sorry! in my last post i was going to tell you i copied a part of Sylvie King report because it touched a few part that made this event a pleasure!

  11. 100 words…be sure to collect the first letter of each word:)

    Pace yourself
    Atlas snowshoes suck
    February 9 2013
    Open field
    Run with heart
    Deep cleat
    Heart thumping
    Eastern Ontario
    Ass over tea kettle
    Lost hat
    Hydration pack ultrAspire
    Winter wonderland
    Shortened course (phew)
    Too cold for shorts Sebastian
    Beer glass
    Rosemary’s best socks ever
    Outdoor fitness
    Kicking ankles
    Derrick home YAU100
    Iskiw first male
    Opportunity seized
    Next pair… DIONS
    Sara first female
    Never again!
    Okay, that’s a lie
    Walking not allowed
    Second place female, me
    Hillside coffee
    Objective: finish
    Experience of a lifetime
    Recovery is for sissies
    Almost beat my husband
    Early to bed

  12. Ceri Timbrell says:

    It’s tough to pick just one race as a favourite from such a great series, but I think it has to be the Red Barn Series Finale. With the temperature just above freezing, no wind and snow gently falling, the conditions were perfect for a run through the woodland.
    An interesting but challenging course, home-made soup, Grandma Rosie’s socks, a bonfire to keep us all warm and great live music from some very talented young musicians. With such family collaboration to organise the event, it created a very friendly atmosphere.
    Ten months until we get to do it all again!

  13. Agata Szlanta says:

    The adventures of a neophyte

    Wide-eyed and nervous, a neophyte arrives to the Switzerville Snowshoe Race. The night prior, a friend politely inquired, can YOU run in snowshoes?

    Laughter in the air, bonfire blazing, and a warm welcome from the organizers quickly dissipates any lingering doubt.

    Ready, set, go! Off she sets, trekking at a turtle’s pace. At first every step feels unsteady and awkward, but exhilaration ensues from the challenge of a new experience.

    Maybe it was the open farmland, or the peaceful woods or even the few hills along the way, but there was certainly an intangible connection of man to nature, pushing this neophyte to the finish line.

    And yes, there were several falls along the ways, some sadly witnessed, but determination and pride were not bruised, only ankles! Same time same place next year!

  14. John Warner says:

    All of the races were all great! And yes, the Red Barn was the best! It felt like home to me. My parents grew up and worked on farms and I caught the end of that era. It was a treat to hang out on the farm with everyone last Sunday, the fire, the folk/rock songs(found myself singing along) and the best soup in the world!

    What a treat to run the trails where our snowshoe champion, Derrick, grew up training and has led many of us to enjoy snowshoe running. Thank you!

    Must say that I was really impressed with the Summerstown trails that were groomed by Gilles Parisien’s in his first year effort which attracted our world champion from Quebec.

    It’s been a blessing…..a lot of fun and what a joy to be running around outside in the winter. Can’t think of a better way to spend a Saturday or Sunday morning.

    Thanks for being who you are Derrick and Sara and all of your family!

  15. Oh I am loving this contest just to read about everybody’s different experience of those races is a perfect way to end the season. Great idea who ever came up with this one. Rosie’s Socks Rock:)
    I like that poem by Jenn Ross very creative.
    I would NEVER be able to pick just one they are all very good. Good luck.
    This should be an annual contest I like it:) B

  16. I agree with Buttons, the entries are fantastic! It’s been a pleasure reading them all, and confirming that the series brought out very special experiences over the five races. Hope to see you all next year. Bring friends!

  17. Congratulations to our Dion Eastern Ontario Snowshoe Running Series Contest Winner!


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