BOYLSTON and MANNSVILLE, NY – The Winona Forest Recreation Association kicks off its season of winter events Jan. 28 with the Empire State Snowshoe Championship Race and the Stone Wall 5K Walk/Run through the sprawling 9,000-acre state forest in northern Oswego and southern Jefferson counties.
“The Winona Stone Wall has evolved into one of the Northeast’s premier snowshoe events,” said race director Rich Shumway. “The 5K course is designed so anyone can participate, regardless of your ability level. The championship course is a true test of endurance, and should be selected only after at least some level of snowshoe training. This is a great distance to help prepare for a half marathon or longer. Both distances offer a variety of all types of trail conditions.”
The championship race begins at 10 a.m. Jan. 28 at the CCC Camp, Route 90, near Mannsville.
The Stone Wall Classic starts at 10:30 a.m.
A detailed description of the race course and registration information is posted at http://www.winonaforest.com/stone-wall.html.
The Jan. 28 events will take place regardless of weather.
Post-race refreshments and awards ceremony will be held at the 11 North Bar and Grill in Pulaski.
Both distances offer a variety of conditions over mixed groomed trail, single track packed, and virgin snow single track courses.
Winona contains more than 30 miles of multi-use cross country ski, snowshoe, hiking, and biking trails, and almost 40 miles of separate snowmobile and ATV trails.
The trails are groomed and maintained by volunteer members of the Winona Forest Recreation Association.
“The Stone Wall Classic is one of many events that celebrate the diverse uses and beauty of the Winona Forest trails,” said Janet Clerkin, Oswego County Tourism Coordinator. “Members of the Winona Recreation Association put in countless hours to maintain the trail system and make the trails accessible for snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, snowmobiling and even fat bikes.”
Other events scheduled for Winona this winter include the 38th annual Winona Forest Tourathon Feb. 10; the Tug Hill Challenge sled dog races, organized by the Pennsylvania Sled Dog Club, Feb. 17 and 18; the IditaFAT Bike Race March 3, and the SnoFatShu Winter Duathlon March 4.
The IditaFAT is considered the biggest winter fat bike race on the East Coast, while the SnoFatShu is the only winter duathlon that combines showshoe and fat bike competition.
For more information e-mail [email protected] For event updates and trail conditions visit www.winonaforest.com or www.facebook.com/pages/Winona-Forest/192995718601.
For visitor information and more Oswego County winter events, go to www.visitoswegocounty.com.