Category: News

Final Update for 2023 Raven 100k Challenge

  • FINAL UPDATE: 61 of our participants have entered enough distance to qualify for a challenge woodallion!
  • If you ended the month of November lower than the cutoff (aka under the 100k mark) unfortunately you did not qualify for a 100k challenge finisher woodallion 🙁
  • The cutoff for submissions was Monday 12/4. The table below shows what was sent to the custom laser engraving company on 12/5 (including distances and badges earned!).
  • We need to get our custom woodallion engraver (Raven Tree Works) the data to print the name and distance customized woodallions — plus the custom badges — so we can get the woodallions to the 100k challenge finishers in a timely manner.

Anyone registered who reaches 100k or higher walking, hiking, or running in November gets a custom Raven Challenge Woodallion suitable for display — and even suitable to hang on holiday decorations!

FINAL TALLY was made 12/4/23 with the badge claims and distances you and other challenge participants have reported.

If you need the link to claim your badges, click here.

If you have new badges to claim, you can submit the form as many times as needed and we will “super score” your badge claims (i.e. once you claim a badge you don’t need to claim it again on a subsequent form submission — but it doesn’t hurt to claim it again if you can’t remember!).

These are the final tallies:

Some highlights from the 2023 Raven 100k Challenge include:

Paul Woolley – 1st overall male – 532.4k ••• Mea Sgaglio – 1st overall female – 318.0k

Mark Shaner – 2nd overall male – 317.9k ••• Alexandra Heller – 2nd overall female – 306.8k

Kevin Ascher – 3rd overall male – 314.9k ••• Andrea Mindell – 3rd overall female – 301.3k

Jorge Leiriao – 4th overall male – 311.3k ••• Liz Osterhus – 4th overall female – 259.1k

Jamie Howard – 5th overall male – 300.7k ••• Jill Vincent – 5th overall female – 253.4k

•••••••

Paul Woolley – 1st male to 100k ••• Mea Sgaglio – 1st female to 100k

Mark Shaner – 2nd male to 100k ••• Alexandra Heller – 2nd female to 100k

Jorge Leiriao – 3rd male to 100k ••• Andrea Mindell – 3rd female to 100k

•••••

  • Number of 2023 participants: 61 total – 33 men, 28 women
  • Total badge types: 17 unique badges
  • Most total badge types possible for one person to earn this year: 15* 
  • Number of participants who earned the maximum number of 15 badges: 0
  • Number of badges earned total: 296
  • Most common badge earned: Bald Eagle badge (53 of 61)
  • Second most common: Turkey badge and Veteran’s Day badge (47 of 61 for both)
  • Least common badge earned: Peeter Badge, Raven Rockstar Badge (both 0 of 61)
  • Second least common badges: Full Flock, Raven Meteor (both 1 of 61)
  • Number of GPS challenge items hidden at the Rez: 28
  • Number of GPS challenge badges earned: 25
  • Number of GPS challenge items still hidden at the park: 3, we will be searching for them during an upcoming SundayRun!
  • 2023 Participant who completed the most Raven Rocks Run 10k courses: Peeter Muursepp (over 10 times).
  • Number of participants who reached 32 Raven Rocks 10k Loop courses completed in November 2023 required to earn the most difficult badge of all: The Peeter Badge: 0 of 73 
  • Note: if a participant exceeds 62 Raven Rocks courses in an upcoming year, the Peeter badge gets renamed for them… I don’t know if anyone will ever exceed the record on this. 
  • The Raven Meteor badge is for participants who witness a meteor while running during November. Only one of our runners achieved this: Jamie Howard. Congrats! You get a meteor flair for your woodallion this year. Note for next year’s runners: The annual Leonid Meteor Shower is in Mid-Nov each year and it is a perfect time for a night run and meteor gazing!
  • Other new badge ideas that challenge participants have suggested include the Volunteer Badge and Raven2Raven badge (run the Raven Rocks courses at the Rez and Rockefeller Park in the same day). Also, the Coyote badge, Naked Raven badge, and Jose Cuervo badge. I still don’t know what the last three proposed badges entail, but I eagerly await the explanations. We are open to other badge suggestions as well – ravenrocksrun.org/contact-us

Next year we plan to have the 9th annual Raven Rocks Run 10k Trail Race at 9 a.m. on Sunday, November 10, 2024. We will also bring back the Raven 100k Challenge as well for a 5th year. Anyone who signs up for both events at the same time will get a break on the dual registration. There also will be a super early raven discount when registration opens in early 2024. We appreciate the early support of the race and challenge!

Thanks again for being a part of this event! (This page including any late updates can be found at ravenrocksrun.org)

*the Full Flock badge (10x on the course) supersedes the Ultra Raven badge (5x on the course) which supersedes the Raven Badge (1x on the course).

Check ravenrocksrun.org/photos for links to pictures (from this year and past years) of the Raven 100k Challenge and the Raven Rocks Run.

2023 Last Caw!

Get your badge submissions in — and your distances in BY 12/4!

Let us know if you are having trouble getting anything to us and we will help!

  • If you completed the 2023 Raven 100k Challenge and have NOT posted your results yet to https://runsignup.com/ravenrocks/results you won’t receive a finisher woodallion!
    • Missing your woodallion after all that work would be a tragedy worthy of an Edgar Allen Poe work.
    • Submit your results now!

Thanks!

2023 Raven Rocks Recap

Hello Raven Runners!

Last Sunday was a chilly day to start, with frost on the ground at 6am as your volunteers arrived for the race day setup. Luckily it was sunny and that took the edge off as the sun got higher in the sky. Plus the roaring fire pit helped keep the chill at bay until race start.

Raven Rocks 2023 Results

We had 246 runners finish on Sunday – backed by a team of around 40 race volunteers including registration and t-shirt table help, kitchen/food setup, course checkers, timing volunteers, photographers, the utility team, and more. We also could not have put on the race without the help of Ward Pound Ridge Reservation staff — and their fearless leader, Jeff Main. We want to thank the County of Westchester Department of Parks, Recreation, and Conservation for hosting us at the park. The Lewisboro Volunteer Ambulance Corps came to the race to be on standby to help in case of injury.

The race supports the Friends of Trailside Museum and Ward Pound Ridge Reservation. Participants are given the opportunity to join the friends group during registration, and nearly 90 of you took advantage. [You can STILL JOIN the friends group via this link: https://runsignup.com/Race/Donate/NY/CrossRiver/RavenRocksRun] Membership is at any dollar level. The most popular level is the $100 “Wood Turtle” level which gets the member a year long parking pass for the Rez. We raised over $5,600 for the friends group through the membership program on the registration website this year. Thank you Raven Runners, Hikers, and Walkers!

Musical Guests

We also had the two-man band of Casey Stanford (Guitar) and Layne Krulik (Drums) rocking mile 5.5 at Pell Hill in the meadow. Runners heard Led Zeppelin, Metallica, and many other rockin’ tunes as they headed downhill towards the finish around 3/4 mile away. Casey and Layne are 6th graders at John Jay Middle School. Thanks for braving the cold morning – and thanks to their roadies for getting them there! We hope they will come back for a return engagement in the spring and fall!

The Pell Hill Band: Casey Stanford (Guitar) and Layne Krulik (Drums)

Cobweb Crew

The Cobweb Crew – early morning volunteers! Many pre-ran the 10k course – and some of these folks also were sweeps.

The Cobweb Crew is a group of runners that go out well before the race and run the course to check that the markings are still there and everything is set for the race. We are confident in our trail course setting ability, but the whims of four legged (and two legged) creatures can lead to unexpected new paths. So we rely on the cobweb crew for this vital service which helps to keep all raven runners and hikers on course.

Race Highlights

The race had two repeat winners this year: Lindsay Felling (50:36) and Eamonn Sullivan (45:01). Both runners set new Raven Rocks course records! It was Lindsay’s 4th overall win at Raven Rocks and Eamonn’s second win.

The youngest finishers were a pair of 8-year olds running the race for the first time: Christian Piddington and Wyatt Nable.

The two youngest runners (8 years old each) running along the Raven Rocks trail overlooking the Stone River Ravine in Pound Ridge (Runners are Christian Piddington (8), Julie Piddington, Wyatt Nable (8), and David Nable. (photo by Carl van der Zandt)

All in all a very fun and energetic Sunday. Thank you to all who came, ran, helped, and watched. A great day all around!

….Rob

Photo Gallery for 2023 (and prior years!)

We have a group of volunteer photographers (thank you Carol, Griffin, Carl, and Justin!) who came out to the race to help document the event. Their 2023 photos are available on our permanent gallery website here: https://leathermansloop.smugmug.com/Raven-Rocks-Run/2023

Links to prior years photos (2015-2023) is at this link: https://ravenrocksrun.org/photos/

Lastly – if you have photos YOU’D like to share (and be able to find years later!) post them to the 2023 runner’s upload album gallery using this link: https://leathermansloop.smugmug.com/upload/hQzcqM/2023

Some selected photos from 2023:

2023 Raven 100k Challenge Status Update

There are 66 raven 100k challenge participants reporting their distance results to date.

  • UPDATE: 40 of these participants have entered enough distance to qualify for a challenge woodallion to date.
  • If you end the month of November lower than the cutoff (aka under the 100k mark) unfortunately you will not qualify for a 100k challenge finisher woodallion 🙁 So…. get moving and get those K’s reported ASAP! We know you’ve done them!
  • The cutoff for submissions is Monday 12/4. The table below shows what will be sent to the custom laser engraving company on 12/5 (including distances and badges earned!).
  • We need to get our custom woodallion engraver (Raven Tree Works) the data to print the name and distance customized woodallions — plus the custom badges — so we can get the woodallions to the 100k challenge finishers in a timely manner.

Anyone registered who reaches 100k or higher walking, hiking, or running in November gets a custom Raven Challenge Woodallion suitable for display — and even suitable to hang on holiday decorations!

FINAL TALLY will be made 12/4/23 with the badge claims and distances you and other challenge participants have reported.

If you need the link to claim your badges, click here. If you have new badges to claim, you can submit the form as many times as needed and we will “super score” your badge claims (i.e. once you claim a badge you don’t need to claim it again on a subsequent form submission — but it doesn’t hurt to claim it again if you can’t remember!).

2023 Results Posted

We have posted the 2023 results here: https://ravenrocksrun.org/results/2023-results/.

Thanks runners for making this a great day and thanks to our volunteers for pitching in and making it happen.

We are working on a recap of the day and have started to get photos and video organized and uploaded. Check back at this page later on for the recap link — and refresh the 2023 photos link to see more as we upload.

Our photographers do a great job! Today Carol, Carl, and Rob took photos and video — plus thanks to all of the runners who will be submitting photos – thank you in advance! (<–hint: upload yours to this album!)

Raven Rocks 2023 Set for Tomorrow!

Click or press image to go to registration page.

The Raven Rocks Run is set to go tomorrow at 9am. See our Logistics Note for advice on getting to the park and getting oriented once you arrive.

Race organizers will be at the park and on the trails today doing the final prep work and fine tuning the course for our Sunday morning start.

Register

There is Last Minute Online Registration available until this evening if you are deciding late to run – sign up now and make tomorrow morning easier for yourself!

THERE WILL BE SAME DAY REGISTRATION AT THE PARK TOMORROW! If you haven’t signed up yet but want to run – come early. Day of race registration opens at 7:30am.

Note: if you are running tomorrow and want to have an extra layer for the start but then want to peel it off (after that first big hill when you are warmed up!), we will have volunteers at Michigan Road (1 mile into the course, up the first big hill) who can collect your outer layers in a bin and will return them to the finish line area near the tent and fire put for you to pick up after you finish.

The course is the same as 2022 — barring any downed trees overnight! It is already “lightly marked” and the full and final marking will take place today.

There is a water stop at the 4 mile mark at the top of the Fire Tower climb (the highest spot on the course).

See you on the trails!

….Rob, Ciorsdan, and the Raven Volunteers

November 2023 Raven 100k Challenge

The Challenge: Walk, hike, or run 100k during the month of November 2023. Distance can be done anywhere, the only requirement is that it be on your feet.

The Rewards:

  • You stay active as the days shorten and the weather cools down.
  • You can join our Strava Club to track your November progress and share with other challengers.
  • If you are in the local area of the Ward Pound Ridge Reservation, you can check out the Raven Rocks overlook which is on the Raven Rocks 10k Run course (and there are a pair of Ravens who live there that you might see if your timing is right!).
  • You can earn badges as you unlock the various achievements we have set up.
  • At the end of the month we tally your totals and send or give you a custom finisher “woodallion” with your name and badges and achievements (see image below) along with your shirt (if purchased).
The 2023 Raven 100k Challenge “woodallion” – The lightly etched outlines will be replaced with physical badge pieces fastened atop as those are earned. So you may have the whole deck filled or just parts. Some of the badges are very difficult to achieve!

Below are the badge images and names from last year and further down are the descriptions of the achievements. We are open to suggestions on adding more badges – especially if you are outside of the local Raven Rocks / Ward Pound Ridge area! Maybe an international badge if you run a Raven related course outside the USA!

Badge descriptions:

– Run 10k on the Raven Rocks Run course (raven badge)
– Run 5x 10k on the Raven Rocks Run course (ultra raven badge)
– Run 10x 10k on the Raven Rocks Run course (full flock badge)
– Take a selfie at the Raven Rocks Overlook and send it in (photographer badge)
– Submit a photo of yourself on a run with your “I Voted” sticker (bald eagle badge) or if you can’t vote in the election, next to someone with an “I Voted” sticker.
– Submit a photo of you running on Thanksgiving (turkey award)
– Photo of a raven anywhere (citizen award) (merged with traveler badge)
– Do a run in the dark to Raven Rocks (night owl badge)
– Do a run at dawn to Raven Rocks (cobweb crew badge)
– 200k distance in November (snowy owl badge)
– 300k distance in November (white raven badge)
– Read a stanza from Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Raven” poem and send us a link. Use SoundCloud, YouTube, Facebook, or whatever audio service you want. (wise owl badge)

New badges last year include the “Peeter Badge” named for Peeter Muursepp who during 2020’s Raven 100k Challenge did 33 loops of the 10k Raven Rocks course. Get 33 loops or more to earn the badge. Last year Peeter upped the ante with 62 Raven Rocks 10k loops during the month of November. That’s more than 2 per day! If you surpass it with 62 (or more) and the badge name changes to your name. But we think Peeter is safe since that is a huge number. Only 3 people have ever earned this badge.

Jacob Benesch proposed a badge last year for anyone doing 5x Raven Rocks 10k course in one day (50k total). We already have a badge named the Ultra Raven Badge (5x over the course of a month), so we named a new badge called “The Raven Rockstar Badge” which is shown on the sample above.

Let us know if you have any questions about the Raven 100k Challenge for November 2023 – email ravenrocksrun@gmail.com. Thanks!

See you on the trails!

….Rob, Ciorsdan, and the Raven volunteers

Raven Rocks 10k Run in 2023

The Raven Rocks Run is a challenging 10k trail run at Ward Pound Ridge Reservation in Cross River, NY.

Race is in-person Sunday, November 12th, 2023 starting at 9am. 

The race will start in the Meadow near the fallen oak tree and its massive remains. The course passes by the spot where the Leatherman’s Loop begins. Instead of heading towards the river as the Loop does, the Raven Rocks Run 10k course climbs and climbs up to the two highest points in the park (Raven Rocks Overlook and the Fire Tower Summit) before heading back for a (mostly) downhill and (relatively) flat finish.

The course passes by the site of the former Blue Trail fire tower which is the highest point in the park. We are working towards getting back the tower to its former spot in the park. See Course Map page for course details.

More information about the race and tower project is on the About page and the FAQ page of our ravenrocksrun.org website.

Sign up soon! We have gotten close to our limit the last few times we put on the race — so it could get full, or it may not. Depends on the runner demand!

Raven Rocks 10k Run and Raven 100k Challenge Return for 2023 – Nov 12, 2023

Trail Runners,

The Raven Rocks 10k Trail Run is BACK for its EIGHTH YEAR! 🙂

Date is Sunday, November 12, 2023 @9am for the RAVEN ROCKS 10k TRAIL RUN… Woo hoo!

We are also bringing back the Raven 100k Virtual Challenge for the fourth year — with all of the fun elements from last year — plus we’re looking to add a few more activities to the Virtual Raven 100k challenge during the month of November

Topline News

2023 shirt design

You can sign up for the Raven Rocks 10k Run or the Raven 100k November Challenge — or you can do BOTH!

Early bird (before 10/1) signups get the early bird discount. Signups for both events at the same time also get a discount which appears at checkout. 

Shirts this year will be one design and runners can choose to purchase the long-sleeved cotton shirts (traditional) and/or short sleeved tech fabric shirts. You can purchase one, both, or neither shirt. If you are a purely virtual Raven 100k Challenge runner, we will mail you your shirt (if ordered) — along with your finisher “woodallion” if you hit the 100k goal.

As always, these Raven events support the Friends of Trailside Museum and Ward Pound Ridge Reservation. We encourage runners to join as members of the museum during registration to support their non-profit educational and conservation purpose. 

This year we are also planning to support the Friends of the Cross River Mountain Fire Tower. We will be working with the Westchester Parks Foundation and will be raising funds to support Westchester County and NY State in the restoration of the fire tower to Ward Pound Ridge Reservation. That fundraising account will be set up soon with a range of support levels. More to come on this news!

See you on the trails!

….Rob Cummings, Raven Rocks & Raven Challenge race director


More detail about each event:

## Raven Rocks Run – 10k Trail Run ##

The Raven Rocks Run is a challenging 10k trail run at Ward Pound Ridge Reservation in Cross River, NY.

Race is in-person Sunday, November 12, 2023 starting at 9am. 

The race will start in the Meadow near the fallen oak tree and its massive remains. The course passes by the spot where the Leatherman’s Loop begins. Instead of heading towards the river as the Loop does, the Raven Rocks Run 10k course climbs and climbs up to the two highest points in the park (Raven Rocks Overlook and the Fire Tower Summit) before heading back for a (mostly) downhill and (relatively) flat finish.

The course passes by the site of the former Cross River Mountain Fire Tower which is the highest point in the park. We are working towards getting back the tower to its former spot in the park. See Course Map page for course details and the fire tower’s former (and if we can make it happen the future) location.

More information about the race and tower project is on the About page and the FAQ page of our ravenrocksrun.org website and also the crmfiretower.org information site.

We are looking forward to November when we will run this event for the EIGHTH time!


## Raven 100k Challenge ##

The Raven 100k Challenge is simple: first, register for the challenge. Then run, hike, or walk 100k during the month of November 2023.

Note: You can register as late as November 16 and enter your mileage to date when you register.
This works out to an average of around 3k per day or 25k (15 miles) per week.

If you complete the challenge, you will receive a wooden finisher medallion with achievement badges custom to your Raven Challenge journey. Shirts are optional. 

The Raven 100k Challenge supports the Friends of Trailside Museum and Ward Pound Ridge Reservation, a 501(c)3 not for profit organization based at the Trailside Museum at Ward Pound Ridge Reservation. 

You can also join the Friends of Trailside Museum and Ward Pound Ridge Reservation for 2024 membership during signup. One of the most popular levels is the $100 “Wood Turtle” membership which gives the member a parking pass for the park either for the rest of 2023 or all of 2024 depending on when you join during the year.

Bonus achievements for the Raven 100k Challenge

In addition to running, walking, or hiking 100k during November, there are several bonus achievement badges you can unlock if you are able: 

  • Run 10k on the Raven Rocks Run course (raven badge).This can be done at the Raven Rocks 10k Run race on Nov 12. It can also be done any time at the park. The Course will be marked from 11/9/23 – 11/12/23 for those unfamiliar with it.
  • Run 5x on the 10k Raven Rocks Run course (ultra raven badge)
  • Run 10x on the 10k Raven Rocks Run course (full flock badge)
  • Run 33x on the 10k Raven Rocks Run course (Peeter badge). Note: The Peeter badge is named after Peeter Muursepp who ran the Raven Rocks course 33x during the month of November 2020 during the First Raven 100k Challenge. Peeter exceeded his 2020 feat in 2021 with 63 Loops around the Raven Rocks Run 10k course during the month of November 2021. That is more than 2x RRR loops per day average.
    • Note: If you run 64x or more on the Raven Rocks Run course the Peeter badge is renamed after you. 
  • Take a selfie at the Raven Rocks Overlook and send it in (photographer badge)
  • Take a selfie at any Raven related site, store, zoo, etc. and send it in (traveler/citizen badge)
  • Submit a photo of yourself on a run with your “I Voted” sticker or if you can’t vote in the November election, next to someone with an “I Voted” sticker. (bald eagle badge
  • Run on Thanksgiving (turkey badge).Submit a Thanksgiving run photo to get a badge upgrade to the Photo Turkey badge.
  • Do a run in the dark to Raven Rocks (night owl badge). Note: you can use a headlamp or flashlight while running!
  • Do a run early in the morning to Raven Rocks (cobweb crew badge)
  • 200k distance in November (snowy owl badge)
  • 300k distance in November (white raven badge)
  • Read a stanza from Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Raven” poem and send us a link of you doing this. Use soundcloud, youtube, facebook, whatever service you want. We have most of the poem read by challenge participants last year but need a few more to complete the full 16 stanzas. (wise owl badge)
  • Find your Raven challenge object in the Rez (GPS Badge). See below for details

We are working to display the badges on your results page.

Woodallion Illustration from 2021. Bonus badges are added to the final woodallion if they are earned during the November challenge.

We will incorporate the badges on the physical wooden finisher “woodallion” that we create and send to you once you complete the Raven Challenge. See sample from 2021’s Raven Challenge here.

Any other badge ideas? We are open to suggestions.

In addition, we will have awards for:

  • First 3 men and First 3 women to 100k
  • Top 3 men and Top 3 women in total kilometers.

IMPORTANT: Anyone in contention for these Top 3 awards must make their entries in a timely manner: All entries must be made within 36 hours of your run/walk. 

This is to prevent participants from “batch entering” their results.

Keep your results up to date if you are in the running!

Note: In order to win these awards distance submissions need to be verifiable via GPX files.

See instructions submitting results on RunSignUp Raven 100k Challenge page.

Halfway bonus GPS challenge badge search

Photo of 2020 Woodallion with finisher’s name, distance run in the November challenge, unique achievements, and a number of badges earned added to the final recognition. This year’s woodallion will have a theme around this year’s artwork (see above) with the badges incorporated.

For those in the area near Ward Pound Ridge Reservation we have a special treat in mind that will lead to a bonus badge. If you opt-in via the status form (to be sent to participants in the challenge in November), then after you pass the 50 kilometer mark on your Raven 100k Challenge posted stats, we will send you your own coordinates via “What3Words” app to somewhere in the park where we have hidden a small challenge surprise for you to find. It will be obvious once you get there, but not easy to find unless you have the coordinates.

Everyone will have a different and unique spot somewhere in the park. Some will be further off-trail than others depending on how familiar you are with the park. Let us know when you find your halfway bonus (or if you can’t find it! – we don’t want to leave the challenge items out there!)

→ Sign up for the Raven Rocks Run and/or the Raven 100k Challenge Today!

You can participate in either event – they can be completely independent of each other. Or you can participate in both events. There is overlap in the 100k challenge and the 10k race since one of the Raven Challenge badges is awarded for completing the Raven Rocks Run course.

We are super happy to be out running on trails with you all! See you out there…

2023 Raven Rocks Run and Raven Challenge Open for Early Bird Registration

If you like to plan your races in advance, sign up now! Plus there is a special combo discount if you sign up for both events (10k race and 100k challenge) at the same time.

Raven Rocks 10k Run will be held Sunday, November 12, 2023. The Raven 100k Challenge is set for Nov 1-30, 2023. Both events are open for registration now!

Register

Thanks for supporting the race — and the Friends of Trailside Museum and Ward Pound Ridge Reservation!