Friday, February 29, 2008


Kick-off time now 6.45 until further notice ~ to be reassessed following Sunday 30th March when the clocks change.

In case anyone doesn't know where we meet, it's just slightly down the hill from (appropriately enough) the physiotherapy clinic on Chorley Old Road. In the future it may be appropriate to meet outside whichever is the most convenient home that one of us is put into. As they say, "Be nice to your kids, they choose your retirement home".


Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Inov-8 High Cup Nick Fell Race

I decided that if I was out of the hairdressers by 11ish there was a chance I could make this race.
So to cut down on the amount of 'faffing about' at journeys end, arrived at hairdressers at 9am ready to 'race'. They know I run, so might think I'd been already!

This turned out to be the least of my worries, my usual hairdresser had herself done a 'runner' . Big gulp, £££'s for someone new doing my hair and wanting to be out by 11am! Not wishing to bore you with all the gory details and 'cutting' a long story short, I was out by 11.10am and my woolly hat will be useful until August.

I arrived in Dufton village with an hour to spare and spent a while watching the weather trying to decide, jacket on or off? Rest of runners no help, some had, some hadn't. Just before the off the wind picked up a bit, so jacket on. The route for this race leads you from the village to the start of an impressive valley, the head of which is High Cup Nick. A perfect example of a 'U' - shaped glacial valley with almost vertical sides. (Some good photos here
High Cup Nick.) Never did I think all those years ago doing geography lessons would I get to run up, along, round and down one!

Helped by the wind being behind us on the way out, the vertical scramble out of the valley didn't turn out to be too bad. And although glad to be wearing my jacket as we neared the top, I found it wasn't quite long enough to stop my lower half from getting an icy blast off the stream just to help push me over the last boulder. The route back down followed the top edge of the valley along the Pennine Way. A few strategically pieces of tape stopped us straying to close to the edge, visibility was poor so not a good view of where we'd come from.

One of the faster runners managed to take a few pics as he ran round, won't be long before someone takes a camcorder! If you'd like a flavour of the route have a look
High Cup Nick Fell Race Photos . Fantastic tasting soup and bread (included in price of race), and a good array of cakes were waiting for us in the village hall at the finish.

Race Stats: Winning time 1.01.55 Jim Davies (Borrowdale), me 1.49.05 (winner + 76.2%, not bad, I've clocked up the odd 100% plus. Ed) 127/143, last finisher was a good 30mins behind me (not recorded on results). The hairdo didn't last the course - do you think I should ask for my money back? (trouble is Jules, when you get to our age, you can't be sure that your hair will last the course, can you John. Ed).


Monday, February 25, 2008

Saturday 1st March '08

'fraid I'm leaving you to your own devices again, but the John's are planning to be at the barn for 8.30 as per usual. YJ is only looking for two hours as he's racing in the aftenoon, but no doubt (?) JtE will be coercible into something a bit longer.

I'll be circling Bleasdale. Target time sub 60.

Also, good luck to TF at Noon Stone.


Thursday 28th Feb '08

Usual time, usual place ~ suggest we implement the proposed 6.45 meet (JtE's comment) from March to allow folk to become aware.


Wasdale was wet (in more ways than one) and could be seen from neither Scafell, Scafell Pike, Illgill Head nor Whin Rigg. It was however visible this morning from the slightly lower view point of Irton Pike.

Blackpool Half Marathon

My Nemesis - scene of my first race and nearly my last.

Two years ago I said "Never again," (Take note JtE,) and here I was today, ready to have another go. Well the rain had stopped and it was a chance to see the stricken "Riverdance" ferry, (completely on its side now) so off I set.

Being an optimist (sometimes), I tucked in behind the 8 minute mile pacer thinking I would stick there as long as I could. In the end I only left her for the last half mile to grab a 1 hour 44 min finish. Unlike 2 years ago I did some of the overtaking on the final lap and I never even saw the chicken, with or without headdress, who overtook me at the 12 mile mark 2 years ago!!

All in all it was an excellent day out and I even managed a 2 mile run when I got home so I could tick the correct mileage box for the end of the week (tell us more EtU) . "Are you completely mad?" asked my kids. I think we all know the answer to that!!


Thought we should pen a bit of a tribute to one of our regular Sat morning team. NicO’s triumph as Horwich Ladies Fell champ (not bad for an old lady) and her excellent outing at the North West Half Marathon yesterday placing 5th in age category with a time of 01:44:22 deserve more than a mention.

Nic, well done and you must promise that you won't outgrow your more pedestrian friends.

NLN and all the gang.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Couch Potato

You can’t sneak anything past Ed the Ed. His eyes are ubiquitous. Mine are blue.
In an increasingly desperate attempt to re-connect with the world of running I, for the first time, entered the Radcliffe 12 mile Trail Race. My befuddled brain couldn’t remember whether it was a 12K or a 12M and there’s an "L" of a difference.

The course is a mischievous one, in that the first 7 or 8 miles are flattish and you can trundle around it quite amiably. Then in the last few miles you hit a series of short steepish climbs. Now this would be no problem to you Saturday morning hill-climbers, but to me, old, knackered and a couch potato of some sitting, whose legs show no inclination to become upwardly-mobile, unless it is to climb the stairs for bed, it was most distressing.

I set off at a blistering pace and was soon at the back of the field. This was unfortunate, as at that stage of the race I should have been on a countryside track. Being my first attempt at this race I was a bit concerned that I might get lost, but the snail I was running alongside said that if I could just keep up with him I’d be okay, as he knew the way. This, in my present condition was easier said than done. Anyway I completed the race in the stunningly slow time of 1hr 52mins 01secs. (not even 9 minute-mileing), and in doing so suffered the ignominy of coming last of the five M65 runners. I consoled myself in that, I was not last in the race, that had I been 25 seconds quicker I’d have been 3rd M65, and that these days I adopt Ed’s policy of treating these races as a training run, and had therefore been out the previous day and done about 10k. Any excuse will do. I was even beaten by an M75 who did 1hr 50min 30secs! Despite all of this I came in as 1st CP (? EtU). I didn’t get anything for this but Christina received a Potato peeler. She says they’re quite good for taking eyes out. It’s the first time in my life I’ve been glad I wear spectacles. Someone once asked me if they were bi-focals. I said, "No! They’re by Specsavers". They didn’t think it was funny either.

In contrast to my efforts, the real Horwich runners, Paul Muller, Rob Jackson and Steve Nolan represented the club very well and collected prizes.

Mentioning Ed in a previous paragraph reminds me that in NLN’s report on the Anglezarke Amble, she refers to him as though he were a glass of Andrew’s Liver Salts. He does well to stomach these remarks and has cause for serious gripe. I note that YJ was his usual gentlemanly self in returning a similar time to the ladies. I have to tell you that’s he’s usually half-an-hour or more quicker than that. But knowing him, he probably did a Marathon on the previous day and then used the Winter Hill as his recovery run. As for JtE’s "Never again", it is the cry of disillusionment. When in the Anglezarke area, he is in the habit of the partaking of lunch at the Yew Tree. It must have been very disheartening for him when he realized that this was not a part of the Amble. If the organizers could be persuaded in future, to include an hours stop-off at the Yew Tree his participation in the event is guaranteed. It is most probable that he’ll be first in there, but not first out.

Anyway congratulations to everyone who completed the Amble and/or the Winter Hill. Meantime I continue to be a doddering, dilapidated, decrepit, desperate dude. I’ve got my cardigan and slippers. Now where did I put that blanket?


Remind me not to rattle his cage again.


Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Racing His Way Back to Fitness?

Only one week after his "Bad Day at Black Burn", Mat decided that if he tried a new distance, there could be no odious comparison with previous times and ran the Radcliffe "12" Miler.

However, he ran the 10k at 8-54 pace and the "12" miler at 9-20 pace. Not a much slower pace, despite it being twice the difference. But the miles per minute on the results site were based on 12 miles, whilst the race has been advertised as being 12.5 miles, which would mean that his true pace was even faster than the promulgated 9-20.

Tell us about it Raymondo!


Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Winter Hill Air Disaster 1958

Anyone in the vicinity of the Winter Hill TV station over the next few days may like to take a moment to read the memorial plaque facing the road on the side of the building.

You will see that the crash took place on Thursday 27th February 1958, so Weds 27th Feb '08 will be the 50th anniversary of that tragic morning when 35 people lost their lives.


Monday, February 18, 2008

Saturday 23rd Feb '08

I'm also away Saturday. Can anyone offer to be continuity...?

Thursday 21st Feb '08

I'm away Thursday. Can anyone offer to be continuity man (or lady?) so that the gang knows whether to turn up?


Friday, February 15, 2008


Trigpointinguk rides again!

Who Said That?

In leaving comments on the blog I have noticed that under the heading "Leave Your Comment" the facility to enter a nickname has vanished. I usually type JtE in this space and it appears as a heading to my comment. Now it appears that the only facility to make a comment is in the space marked anonymous. Can anyone (fss?) advise please?


Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Saturday 16th Feb '07

Looks like we have a squad for Saturday; (see comments on earlier post) I'll assume an 8.30 start at the Barn (which I won't attend) and then I'll be at Hordern Stoops for 10.00 in case you're passing that way.

Can someone let me know if meeting me at Hordern Stoops will spoil a more adventurous run for you, in which case I will do my own thing.

At the last count there may be no Johns* attending ~ *correct English would use the singular as "no John" is oviously fewer than one, so can't possibly be plural. However "no John" might suggest only one John would be missing ~ isn't life difficult!


What a day. Fantastic weather, views and support - but surprisingly glutinous underfoot. A great feeling of camaraderie at the start -with over 300 runners/walkers gathering at the school in Rivington village. Among them our Saturday Posse - YJ raring to go and anticipating a fast round prior to WH fell race the following day, JTE enjoying the weather, scenery - completely chilled and ready for theday, NicO chomping at the bit - if a little apprehensive about the distance, not having covered this mileage in one go before; NLN - wondering if she would keep up with a very 'in form' NicO; EtU his usual efferevescent persona, giving nothing away; FSS (formerly of the Satcrew - but now too fast) let off the leash and hoping for a fast PB again before WH Fell Race Sunday. All in all then - a real motley crew! Good to see TF at the start turning up with copious amounts of delicious home-made cake to spur us all on to the finish.

The usual jostling for position at the start to get through the stiles over Georges Lane and up to the Pike and then a lovely little run off and on and up to the mast before the joyous descent to Belmont. NicO and NLN catching YJ at the bottom of the ramp - this would set the pattern for the three of us for the whole of the event. The recces of the route really paying off over the moor to Egerton and soon the StrawberryDuck is left behind and the trot to Darwent Tower began.

At the checkpoint YJ tells us that a sub-5 hour completion is on - why did he tell us that? We really weren't bothered until that point - but now....Keeping YJ in sight on the climbs kept NicO and I on message and then a hammering on the descents put a bit if distance between us, only for YJ to reel us in again on every ascent. Back onto familiar territory, from our Saturday outings, beyond the checkpoint at Slipper Lowe, it almost feels like the end is in sight but there's still a long way to go.

The climb up over Great Hill again saw YJ powering ahead and then another catch up at the steep cut off from the track down to the Cricket Pavillion at White Coppice. This really does feel like the final leg and it is - almost! Now feeling the distance in the legs along the reservoirs and onto the road, just keep it going until the cascades for a rest on the ascent. I can't believe it! That rascal YJ is RUNNING up the cascades, and so is NicO, the swines I was hoping for a nice little walk on this bit.... press on now and cross the stream and up the steps, minutes to go to get in under five - it's doable!

Final times YJ (I think) 4hrs 52, NIcO/NLN 4hrs53. I put this down to the inherent advantage that John has of twenty year's more experience of this sort of thing!

Post script ~ FSS completed in PB of 4.01 but tearing a calf muscle in the process. Word on the street has it that EtU fell fowl (sic) of the JamButty trap at every checkpoint, leaving JTE in the clutches of two attractive medical students on the climb to Darwen Tower - malicious innuendo I'm sure.


Monday, February 11, 2008

G'day Mat?

(extract from an email)

What a great day it was for the Anglezarke Amble. You must have enjoyed it. I hope you did a good time. I saw a few participants in the distance as I was doing some reps of Winter Hill. I was a good 10% slower than normal and followed that up by doing 55m 15secs at the Winter Warmer. That was five-and-a half minutes slower than 2 years ago. Admittedly I was training for my J.N. then, but it's still well off the pace. There was once a film called "Bad Day at Black Rock" starring Spencer Tracy. There's some talk about making one called "Bad Day at Black Burn" starring Ray Stafford.

Saturday 16th Feb '08

I'll be turning out, but even later than usual. Need to discuss a rendezvous with anyone who'll be out there.

Race Report

Well chuffed with my effort yesterday, my first race as a veteran. Thank you everyone for all your help and support, both during the preparation and race day. Congratulations to John for completing the 'double' , pb's for both days.

Coming off the top from the trig point there was no-one in sight, recceing was going to pay off, yes!! The price to pay in that glorious weather - feeling a bit like a 'little red beacon' from the trig point to CP9!

The Abbey runner caught me up at the stream crossing, and asked 'Which way now?', I offered her the choice of routes and she elected to follow me to the stile, fancy that! Just before we got to CP9 she asked 'How much further?' 'About 1.5m' at which point she sprinted off up the hill following the luminous green arrows. Perhaps I should have told her 3.5m?!

Three others came past me on the run in, including (I think) the bloke who had been stood in front of me at the start with the miracle bumbag. Why did I think it was a miracle bumbag, you're asking? Answer - because how he got all his required kit in it I'll never know, I've got bigger handbags. This bumbag only 'looked' big enough to hold a mobile phone, you'd have struggled to get a set of car keys in it as well!


Well done Julie, it was a joy to see you skipping down from the knoll like a good'un, so obviously enjoying your day.

Well done also to Nic and to (very definitely) NLN, completing the Amble in just under 5 hours with what sounds like a well judged team effort and just one minute behind YJ having played nip and tuck with him for the full 24 miles. Condolences to FSS with his (class 1) torn calf, which still failed to stop him achieving a PB ~ good man Ian!

JtE's verdict on the Amble? Very definitely "never again!"

Condolences also to t'Yorkshireman to and Mat Shstitcklegs for their own personal disasters ~ don't ask!


Tuesday, February 05, 2008

On a Lighter Note

Have you heard about the woman driving along the motorway knitting? A police car spotted her and drawing alongside the guy shouted "Pull Over!"

"No!" she shouted back "Pair of socks!".


Monday, February 04, 2008


Just received this email from Pauline:

"There we were about to leave the house when the ‘phone rang – Paul Murray advising us that the walk leader for the Rucksack Club meet was snowbound in Todmorden. No worries think I – a quick adjustment to kit, and a check on the blog for any updates on arrangements, and off I set for the Black Dog for an 8.30 start to recce Darwen Tower etc. Not fancying the road over ‘The Tops’ I go via ring road, Bob’s Smithy and Scout Road . No problems on road and arrive at Black Dog at 8.15. I begin now to have a bit of a niggle because there is no sign either of JTE or JTY’s car at the meet point. I do see a tiny Citroen with two mountain bikes on the roof beginning the ascent of the road over the tops.

Sitting in the warm car listening to the radio it was becoming apparent that no Sat Gang run would take place from here. Having left a message on the blog, saying I wouldn’t be around this Saturday, I wonder if last minute ‘phone calls have resulted in a run from the Bottom Barn. Methinks, if I now go back over the tops and pause for a while at Horden Stoops, I may be able to pick up the group at that point. Just as I point the car in the Rivington direction, the car with the bikes comes trundling back down the road. I chat to the driver who tells me that the road is completely iced up and impassable on the incline up past the Blue Lagoon. At this point I decide to give up and go shopping…. Yes I know - but what else can a girl do, having been stood up twice in one morning! Anyway I went to the Go Outdoors store in Wigan which I can heartily recommend for top gear at great prices.

I did finally get out for a bit of stroll for a couple of hours with a friend, culminating in soup and sandwiches at the Tea shop in Rivington village. Not the day that was planned but very enjoyable after all. See you all at the Amble – weather permitting!


Well, Pauline, having realised on Friday evening that (as you found out) the road over the tops might be difficult, the decision was taken (as you had guessed) to revert to the usual venue. All those whom we were expecting were contacted and there may have even been a little smugness on the Saturday morning with the feeling that we were able to cope with changing the arrangements at short notice.

I realised as we set off that I hadn't updated the blog, but thought that this wouldn't matter as "everyone had been notified". A tiny bit of lateral thinking would have led us to the possibility that if the local group couldn't get where they were going, then possibly the more adventurous group would be similarly thwarted, as indeed you were.

Sorry that we screwed up, as you know, we would not have left you behind for the world. I will try to learn from this, but as you can imagine, at my age, for every new thing I learn, I forget two more! S'pose the three main lessons are never to assume anything, to update the blog and if anything can go wrong it will.

See you Saturday,

Borrowdale Fell Race 2008

There will be no entries taken on the day for the Borrowdale Fell Race in 2008.

Potential competitors must apply to enter the race by means of the official Borrowdale Fell Race entry form. That form will not be made available nor will any entries be accepted before 31st May 2008.

Please do not try to enter without the official form and please do not ask the Race Organiser for an entry form before 31st May.
After 31st May, entry forms will be available to download from . Forms will also be available after 31st May by post (please send a stamped self addressed envelope) from the Race Organiser: Andrew Schofield, End Yan, Jenkin Hill, Thornthwaite, Keswick, CA12 5SG.

The Race will be limited to 500 competitors. The first 500 entries received, from appropriately experienced runners, after 31st May will be accepted. No entries received after 7th July will be accepted.

(copied from


Julie, thanks for this. We usually manage to field a few of us for this classic and it would be a shame to miss it due to the new arrangements. If they get the full 500 it'll be quite a crush at the bottleneck where we turn off the road.


Re TF's Comment ~ Yes, this'll really put the pressure on you. As Borrowdale entries open on Duddon Day, you'll not only have to finish to get a "qualifier" but you'll have to to back in time before all the entries are filled.

Go for it!