Tag Archives: scenic byway

How I Accidentally Made Chris Hike on Steep Terrain for 40 Minutes on the “Most Energy-Depleted Day” of his Prep

One week until the show!  Chris referred to today as his “most energy-depleted day of the entire contest prep.”  He gets the least food and has exhausted his legs.

Due to his energy depletion, Chris rejected my idea of going on an 11 mile group hike today but decided to try to bolster the fiance points by planning a fun, low-energy, Saturday activity: fall foliage viewing!  The plan was to drive around central MA on a recommended “scenic byway” where we would run into some towns to walk around and possibly go on a couple of very short, easy walks that were listed in the travel brochures.

As soon as we got off the main road onto the “scenic byway,” we saw signs for a “Garlic and Arts” festival; we decided to check it out.


When we got to the parking lot, we saw there was a huge line (seen in the back left of the photo above) to get on the shuttle buses that would take us to the fair.  We did not feel like waiting and figured the fair was probably just a short walk up the road.  A fair official told us we could either walk 2.6 miles on the road itself to get to the fair or hike 1.3 miles through the woods to get there.  As 1.3 is shorter than 2.6, we chose the hike.


Chris near the sign at the start of the hiking trail


The same sign, enlarged.  Note the “600 feet of elevation gain/loss” and “Do not attempt this hike if you are unsure of your ability to complete it.”

We figured, how hard can 1.3 miles be?


Ominously, the exact same sign was placed along the trail again, 5 minutes into the hike.

As you probably guessed, 1.3 miles was not what it sounded.


It was beautiful and silent in the woods; I loved it.  …And it took us 40 minutes to get from our car to the fair.

Chris did not talk to me much as we walked.  He silently puttered along behind me.  I kept wondering if I should not have let Chris “attempt the hike” as I was “unsure of his ability to complete it.”

Humorously, twice along the trail, others, who were resting, commented on our appearance of strength and fitness on the steep hills; oh little did they know…

Chris survived but was utterly spent by the time we reached the fair and, as I wandered curiously from garlic-themed booth to garlic-themed booth, Chris bumbled along behind me chowing down protein bars in a daze.

As we left the fair, we noticed a parking lot, right next to the front entrance. So apparently, only suckers who don’t know any better hike steeply through the woods for 40 minutes to get to the Garlic and Arts festival.

When we left, I agreed with Chris that we should take the shuttle back to the car.


That’s a happy man who does not have to hike 1.3 steep miles back to the car.  (Note that he is wearing the same shirt he wore last Saturday.  Big red “Boomer Sooner” shirts are completely inconspicuous in New England…)

After the shuttle whisked us back to our car, we finished our driving foliage tour and, although we did stop to take pictures, we never wandered more than 20 feet from the car again.


Now that’s foliage!

More foliage

What foliage!

And, to conclude, tomorrow, Chris is going to shave his entire body.  Because you have to shave your entire body before a bodybuilding show.

Seven days!