Race Around Birds 2021

A trail map showing the route and laps for the Race Around Birds.

The Birds of Vermont Museum is hosting the second annual Race Around Birds trail run! There are two options for runners (and walkers), and you can even do both:

Race Day run: Saturday, November 6th, at 10a.m. This is a typical trail run, although there is both a one-lap and two-lap option. We can welcome up to 50 runners.

On-Your-Own (Virtual) Race: choose a day between October 23 and November 5th, run one or two laps, and record your time on the paper forms (available at the Museum’s front door).

Race results are in, and posted in our blog.

To Register

While registering is free, we encourage donations to cover the cost of post-race snacks and water. You may register for Race Day (group race), Virtual (self-timed) race, or both.


Course Description

This is a trail race with some steep uphill climbs. Some segments are more like single-track mountain trails. This is a HARD course.

One lap or two? There are two options, short and long, using the same course (trails): a one-lap 3.6-mile race, and a two-lap 7.2-mile race. (Distances are approximate.)

The course is well-marked and you will return to the Museum in the middle of each lap. There are no supplies and no first aid stations on the course. Bathrooms and water are available only if the Museum is open (Wednesdays through Sundays, 10am – 4pm, in October only).

The course is essentially a loop on each side of the road. Think of it as a figure 8 (although the loop on the north side of the creek is more convoluted than a simple loop).

If you are doing the short race, you will run the course once (lap one uses  green numbers on the map). For the longer race, you cover the course twice, but on the second pass you run the opposite direction (lap two is labelled in purple on the map).

How It Works

You may run or walk the course.

On the November 6th Race Day, runners will start at 10 a.m.

For the On-Your-Own (Virtual) Race, runners and walkers may come to the Museum at any time from daylight to dusk from October 23 to November 5. No dogs and no nights. You may run (or walk) the course multiple times on different days, in order to improve your times, and you may enter both the short (one-lap) and long (two-lap) race. You may run in groups of up to three or four.

For this option, you will keep track of your own start and finish times. Time-keeping forms will be in a marked box to the left of the Museum’s front door. Fill out a form for each day you race. Then, when you’re ready to run, take a map (if you needed), get to the start line (the west end of the parking lot by the parking sign),  mark your starting time, and GO! Afterward, fill in your finish time (you’ll finish on the other side of the road) and drop it in the box.

If you are running on Race Day, please carpool. We have limited parking.

But wait, there’s more!

If you share photos or comments online, we encourage you to use these hashtags:
#RaceAroundBirds #RaceAroundBirds2021 #birdsofvermontmuseum #runningisforthebirds #trailrace #virtualrace #huntingtonvt #trailrunning #trailrunner

Send questions to trailrunning@birdsofvermont.org!

Printable race packets (trail map, course notes, entry form, waiver) are available as PDFs:

Race Around Birds

Race Around Birds Trail Map

The Birds of Vermont Museum is hosting a month-long “virtual” trail race on our trail system here at the Museum on Sherman Hollow Road in Huntington. Run on your own schedule! The race begins October 5 and ends November 1, 2020.

How It Works

You may run or walk the course. This is a “virtual” race where you will keep track of your own start and finish times. You may run (or walk) the course multiple times on different days, in order to improve your times, and you may enter both the short and long race. You may run in groups of up to three or four if you distance yourselves (as runners normally do).

Runners and walkers may come to the Museum at any time from daylight to dusk. No dogs and no nights.

Registration forms will be in a marked box to the left of the Museum’s front door. Fill out a form for each time you race. Then, when you’re ready, mark your starting time, leave your form, take a map and GO!

There is no charge for this, but donations are much appreciated! There are boxes for this on kiosks near trailheads or click on “Donate” here:

Course Description

This is a trail race with some steep uphill climbs. Some segments are more like single-track mountain trails. This is a HARD course.

There are two options, short and long, using the same course (trails): a one-lap 3.6-mile race, and a two-lap 7.2-mile race. (Distances are approximate.)

The course is well-marked and you will return to the Museum in the middle of each lap. There are no supplies and no first aid stations on the course. Bathrooms and water are available only if the Museum is open (Wednesdays through Sundays, 10am – 4pm).

The course is essentially a loop on each side of the road. Think of it as a figure 8 (although the loop on the north side of the creek is more convoluted than a simple loop).

If you are doing the short race, you will run the course once (labelled in green on the map). For the longer race, you cover the course twice, but on the second pass you run the opposite direction (labelled in purple on the map).

At the end, record your time and leave your form in the box for finishers.

Results will be announced the week of November 2.

If you share photos or comments online, we encourage you to use these hashtags:
#RaceAroundBirds #RaceAroundBirds2020 #birdsofvermontmuseum #runningisforthebirds #trailrace #virtualrace #huntingtonvt #trailrunning #trailrunner

Send questions to trailrunning@birdsofvermont.org!

Download the Trails Map PDF: https://birdsofvermont.org/docs/trail-map-for-race-web.pdf

Or the whole packet (trail map, course notes, entry form, waiver): http://birdsofvermont.org/docs/Race%20Around%20Birds-course-info-entry-form.pdf

This page may get updated with more images, forms, maps, and more — check back!

Exploring our trails and COVID-19

Yes, our trails are open! But we ask you to take extra precautions for now:

  • Please visit only if you live locally (within about 10 miles); current spread-prevention guidelines recommend this. If you are from farther away, we hope to see you later this year.
  • Please take extra care: we have limited or no cell service, and trails can be rough or uneven. Please don’t climb anything.
  • Please stay at least 6 feet (2 meters) from each other. Pass with care and extra room. Give each other even more room if it is windy or if you are breathing hard (we have some good slopes!).
  • Please only travel or hike with people you with whom you are already sharing isolation/quarantine/shelter-in-place.
  • Wash hands before and after your visit with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds. If you don’t have soap and water, use a hand sanitizer containing at least 60% alcohol.
  • Avoid touching structures and do not share binoculars or phones if possible.
  • If you are not feeling well or have COVID-19 symptoms, please visit later when you are recovered.
  • Please, no pets. This is our policy for all of our trails, to protect ground-nesting and ground-foraging birds.
  • For additional information about staying safe while enjoying the outdoors, visit the State of Vermont’s website.
  • For further guidance about Vermont trail closures and COVID-19 safety in Vermont, review the VTGC / VTA Recreation and COVID-19 statement.

The Four Phases of Bridges to Birds

B2B-Banner

Bridges to Birds incorporates disaster recovery, resilience, and prior long-term plans to make outdoor experiences at the Museum accessible to all visitors, including people with limited abilities and families with small children. This four-phase project also expands conservation and educational opportunities and increases the number of locations available for quiet appreciation and contemplation of the natural world.

Connecting to People:
Bridge and Walkway

$104,000
(still need $56,500)

This phase means

* New wildlife observation areas
* Fully ADA-compliant access from parking to Museum
* Protected riparian areas and stream bank stabilization
* Publicly visible donor acknowledgments
* Improved bird habitat
* Resistance to future flooding and precipitation events

We are working with the State of Vermont, the Town of Huntington, and civil, structural, and hydrological engineers to design and build a bridge and walkway after installation of a larger culvert under the road. Interpretive signs, plantings, and welcome information will follow.

Connecting to Nature:
Interpretative Trails

$17,000
(still need $9,000)

This phase provides

* Outdoor exploration
* Citizen scientist access
* Routes for monitoring and birding walks
* Integration with and protection of woodland, meadow, and near-pond habitats
* Peaceful retreats
* Well-maintained trails

Volunteers, staff, and interns repair trails, footbridges, and handrails. We continue to work routing water away from trails, and providing sturdy footing where needed. New maps, signage, and guide materials will be created.

Connecting to New Perspectives:
The Treehouse

$30,000
(still need $2,500)

This phase showcases

* An accessible (ADA-compliant) treehouse, reached by a gravel ramp
* Opportunites to observe birds in the forest canopy
* An outdoor classroom /exhibit space
* New nature-focused programs and activities

The treehouse is already open! We completed the construction thanks to a generous partnership with Center for Technology Essex, Evergreen Roofing, and dozens of volunteers. A grant from the Vermont Community Foundation helped with treehouse-specific programming. The last donations will fund educational signage and seating.

Connecting to Conservation:
Bird-friendly Gardens

$6,000
(still need $2,000)

This phase includes
* Demonstration gardens
* Native plants
* Quiet contemplation spaces
* Habitat and foraging diversity for native birds
* Inspiring and encouraging Vermont gardeners and would-be gardeners

The Gardens phase integrates previous work by staff, interns, and gardeners on local, bird-friendly plantings, garden layout, and native species. Garden beds, paths, booklets, informative signs, and short education tours all extend the experience.

 

Bridges to Birds: where we’ve been

How it All Began in July 2013: Flash flooding at the Museum
Plus photos.
Last Year’s Update: Bridges to Birds: Connecting to People
More about the Treehouse: A New Point of View (from our Treehouse)
A booklet about it: Bridges to Birds (1Mb PDF)
And the collected posts (tagged “Bridges to Birds”)

Donate to help! We happily accept donations online through JustGive, NetworkForGood, and PayPal. You can also call (802) 434-2167 with your credit card info, or send a check in any amount at any time to

Birds of Vermont Museum
900 Sherman Hollow Road
Huntington, Vermont 05462