Wednesday, July 31, 2013
Tuesday, July 30, 2013
Monday, July 29, 2013
Apparently we should have had some beer on top of Knott, but the quad bike giving it a lift met with a bit of an accident. Driver ok, bike a right-off. So there could be a keg of beer out there for the supping!
Sunday, July 28, 2013
What a gem!
Ever since nearly being swept away by the River Caldew on the LDMT in 2011 (bad weather courses in operation) I've wanted to return to explore the area of fells north of Keswick under kinder conditions. The Old Crown Round gave me a chance to do this with an added incentive of some alcohol to help me on my way round.
With the walkers setting off first and us runners picking a start time after 8.30am things were very relaxed from the off. The first beer was being sampled at 10.00am, Old Carrock Bitter - A smooth blend of crystal, chocolate and pale ale malts modestly bittered with East Kent Goldings and First Gold hops, then finished with a late addition of Styrian Goldings to give that classic liquid Christmas pudding flavour. With a further 20m to go it was a only a brief tasting, definitely a 'winter' beer.
Downwards and upwards to Blencathra. With low water levels, I nearly managed to get across the Caldew without getting my feet wet. The ale on the summit turned out to be the summer version called 'Sharp Edge'. Not listed on the brewery website, all I can say is that it was a different taste to the first, and given the hot thirsty work climbing to the summit I helped myself to few gulps more. Well it was just past midday!
Next stop was Skiddaw House YH. Here we were refuelled with a choice of soup.
Attacking the Skiddaw summit from this side seemed infinitely more pleasurable than the usual tourist route up. Could have got quite carried away with the beverage on the top as suggested by the website - A true session bitter; largely Maris Otter pale ale malt with just enough crystal malt to round the flavour. A classic combination of Goldings, Fuggles and Hallertau Hersbrucker provides the bitterness, finished with a hint of Styrian Goldings.
I had to reach the next two summits (Great Calva and Knott) without the promise of any beer. But the final goal was High Pike - Deep amber colour and a full nutty malt character are complemented by a complex hop bitterness derived from a subtle blend of Kent Goldings, Fuggles and Hallertau Hersbrucker copper hops finished with aromatic Styrian Goldings. Sampled a full plastic cup of this one, well it was only 3m to the finish and some of that on the same route we'd set out on.
Well it just goes to show that with beer and map I revert to type, went tottering past my turn off and once corrected stood for a long time looking down at some disused mine workings trying to fathom a good way through. Mind you with a load of 'Dutch Courage' on board, the cows in the last field before the final road section proved a doddle to negotiate.
The rain finally caught me up, and the finish line had moved to inside the pub. 8hrs16mins after I started, a good 4hrs2mins after the winner, but then he didn't stop for the beer!
A few more pics taken by Adrian Nicholls (I'm on 2 of them, 24, 25) can be found here http://3294602.tifmember.com/?Action=_VC&id=133293202&ppwd=ocr
Saturday, July 27, 2013
I few pictures taken during the day
At the start
These three finished the lot.
And all but Healey Nab.
I hear that Albert, Suzanne and one other formed a super quick group finishing well ahead of the quick group. I’m interested to know if Suzanne is now the quickest lady beating Caroline Wright’s record. Can someone let me know please either by posting on this blog or by e-mailing me on email@example.com Also, can someone either post a blog or e-mail to me a report on the activities of both groups.
I followed the slower fast group as far as possible being the only member of the slow group after YJ dropped out at Rivington Pike. My route from there was Two Lads and to the far end of Smithills Reservoir where I turned left to “the wall” and up to Counting Hill and Winter Hill where the group caught me up. Then down to Hordern Stoops where YJ kindly provided some refreshments. Then forward to Great Hill missing out Old Adam Hill hoping that I would be caught again near Great Hill. However I saw nobody from thereon and carried on to White Coppice, missing out Round Loaf, and to the finish. A Coope’s Eight so to speak. 15.19 miles.
A very impressive turn out in the hot and humid conditions.
Friday, July 26, 2013
Wednesday, July 24, 2013
For our newer readership a reminder of the route summits
Old Adam's Hill
Spitlers Edge (spot height)
Round Loaf and
Optional route choice, but you won't be climbing any fences without the presence of a stile, will you?! (For the benefit of United Utilities - the Land Owner) The distance is in the region of 18 miles. The individual men's record of 2:25:30 was set in April 2002 by Kev Gaskell, then aged 40. The ladies' record of 3:33 is held by Carolyn Wright. Any one got a garmin trace of the route that they can post and then our 'non-running' readership can get an idea of where you're all heading? Can someone remember a camera?
Have a good run everyone. I've been lured north with the promise of beer on some of the summits on my route on Saturday. The beer is kindly being supplied by the Hesket Newmarket Brewery (www.hesketbrewery.co.uk), so I believe we'll get to sample 'Old Carrock', 'Blencathra Bitter', 'Skiddaw Special' and 'High Pike' (in that order). I like the sound of Old Carrock the best, apparently brewed to give a 'classic liquid Christmas Pudding flavour'. Details of the route can be found on www.wanderingaengustreks.com/Old-Crown-Round most impressed with the superb route cards produced by the organiser.
Monday, July 22, 2013
It looks as though by default we have a Coope's Doz on the usual date and I fully intend to be there for a 9 am start from the Top Barn. Having had a number of unsuccessful attempts this year I can only hope for a better showing on my part. A lot will depend on the weather -- or whether the weather will be kind to the wethers.
Apologies for causing confusion over last Saturday's UTUP. Having concluded that I would be on my own I awoke with the alarm after a terrible night's sleep and feeling exhausted from the intense heat even at that unearthly time I decided to reset the alarm and run later in the day. As far as I can recall that is first time I have failed to UTUP due to inertia.
Congratulations to TF on her Kentmere debut. Heatwave conditions have not always applied to this event as EtU will testify to having completed with snow on the ground and finishing with a group of competitors sticking together for survival.
Sunday, July 21, 2013
So I have given them a start time of 9am at the Top Barn car park, in essence a Coopes Dozen UTUP. I have advised them that it's likely to be a self-supported round this year.
Can anyone who intends to do all or some of the route make themselves known before the end of the week? I'm away doing the Old Crown Round so won't be able to make it.
I'm sure offers of road support would be gratefully received, the usual parking up places are at Horden Stoops and Watermans Cottage.
I avoided last weeks problem and arrived with plenty of time to apply a generous dollop of suncream to all exposed skin and just as importantly start at the same time as everyone else.
I set off from the back and slowly picked my way past about 5/6 runners by the time we reached the main ridge. A nice cooling headwind stayed with us until we reached the half way point at High Street.
Fabulous views today, in between concentrating logging all the best lines for a day when the clag is down. Was loving the last descent until last bit of stoney path before Hallowbank, can imagine that being a bit lethal on a wet day.
Nice to be back at the finish and see there was some water left by the fast-uns. Just under the 3 hrs. Job done. Some good runs from the Horwich crew, including a spectacular debut by Christa. Results will be on Fellrunner website at some point this week.
I'm sure I'll be back to try and improve on my time. It's tempting to compare with Fairfield, but I'll leave that until I've done it in normal summer weather!
Firstly, apologies on behalf of yesterday’s team for the misunderstanding concerning YJ’s blog postings. The group, comprising TF, TLoB, Mick and myself had generally seen the posting confirming a UTUP but nobody had seen the later posting suggesting an earlier start. We waited until 8.40 am. Sorry for all this YJ.
The four of us set off for the Pike and then Two Lads from where TF and TLoB returned to their cars, TF being involved in the Kentmere Horseshoe today and TLoB nursing an injury. Mick and I carried on to Winter Hill then via the wooden bridge and the sheep’s back back to the start. Only 6.33 miles but it was enough in the heat.
Friday, July 19, 2013
It was already 23ª at 9am so I do recommend an early start and an easy run tomorrow for anyone venturing out.
Wednesday's Jubilee was quite encouraging for me - a little over 39 minutes for a 5 mile hilly race which was still quite warm. I lost a few places on the run-in, just didn't seem to have anything left.
I think YJ should be happy with his return even though the last time I ran it, he was well in front of me : the recovery is well on the way. I was amazed to find the last time I had raced the Jubilee was 2009, so pleased to be 1:40 quicker.
Last Saturday's run was interesting. I was a few minutes late but noticed a distinct absence of familiar vehicles, so after waiting a couple of minutes, headed off to Two Lads. A pause there and I recognised the style of Ed approaching from the Wilderswood direction. He was not alone, but accompanied by another runner who I hope will join us on future runs. His name is Os, or Osimon (spelling may be incorrect) and is training for some long distance stuff so could well turn out at UTUPs. Look out for him : he knows that both Ed and I are away for a few weeks.
Further to my posting regarding tomorrow's run I note there has been no response from anybody so it looks as though I shall be on my own.
Having spent the afternoon in a darkened room recovering from lively six mile run in the midday sun I think a change of plan may be advisable, incorporating an earlier start. Is anybody interested?
Thursday, July 18, 2013
Wednesday, July 17, 2013
Monday, July 15, 2013
Sunday, July 14, 2013
Tal Y Fan fit the bill - half the distance and feet of climb.
Nearly thwarted by the bucket'n'spade brigade travelling along the A55, I arrived in the little village of Rowen with just 10mins to the off. No worries, all ready to run except putting on a bit of sun cream ( it doesn't mix well with leather car seats). Slight problem though, all the parking spaces already bagged. 8 mins later after a tour round the valley and a desparate look on face the local bobbie let me in past the 'road closed' sign.
A quick cursory slap of sun cream, grabbed my bum bag, buff, map and fiver and dashed to the start. Lots of applause heralded my arrival, and the departure of all the others! Grabbed a number off the registration team and started to put together my 'fell runner' look on the run.
In the process of securing on the number (always have pins on my club vest) and bum bag I managed to drop the buff without realising. I'd got the last runner in sight by the time I had realised, so wasn't going back for it.
A lovely route, with some good views out to the Gt Orme. I'd caught 2 runners by the summit of Tal Y Fan and a 3rd by about 2/3rds round. He was I observant enough to note I had a map and I gained a 'shadow'. I managed to shake him off when I disappeared into the bracken as we descended the last hill back to the village. Some kind soul had placed my buff on a wall waiting for my return, so grabbed it on my run in to the finish.
A big thank you to all the Marshalls out on the route, the supply of water was gratefully received. I'd love to go back and re-do it so that I can a) start at the same time as everyone else and b) take advantage of more usual summer weather - clag.
I now look a bit 'stripey' just to match my club vest, the perils of 'slap-dash' sun cream application!
Friday, July 12, 2013
Thursday, July 11, 2013
Wednesday, July 10, 2013
Just starting across the flats I came across a young lady by name of Angela, with her friend. Angela very kindly took this photo and subsequently emailed it to me:-
Thank you Angela, but next time can you tell me to stand up straight.
Made the top in one hour 14, then home down the mast road and Foxholes in 62 minutes making 2:16 in total - I was ready for my tea.
With regard to the previous posting - love the shorts SN!
Tuesday, July 09, 2013
Sunday, July 07, 2013
Slight disappointment at the meagre gathering for the inaugural Tri Winter Hill, in that there was only Mary W, with her better half Andy in support, and YJ to support me:-
We all set off for the anti-clockwise tour of the eponymous hill (look it up, Rachel) and I was soon at the back of the field again.
TF buzzed backwards and forwards with the camera:-
We had earlier passed YJ near Hordern Stoops, he having crossed the hill to intercept the 'event'.
Then it was off the bike and up to the trig on foot, to be met first by Mary:-
...on their way back from the trig.
Mary claims to have finished the route in about 2:40, but I have asked for a steward's enquiry. I finished in an undisputed 3:45! Post Script:- Mary admits to a timing error (she blames Andy) and her time has been adjusted to 2:47.
Thank you to everyone who turned out, on what seemed to be a fun morning out, and congratulations to Mary who set a time which may never be beaten.
It wasn't until later that day that I was told that Mrs Watters had completed the bike circuit ahead of most of the field.
On Sunday morning I met Christa below the Pike and she aked what I had done on Saturday. On hearing my story she asked 'Was it a proper event, or one of your made-up ones?'!!!
Thursday, July 04, 2013
Saturday 6th July - having a look (more than a look) at the Tri Winter Hill route, starting from Horrocks Wood car park on Scout Rd at 9:00 a.m. Probably only the twins and me attempting all three disciplines, but plenty of scope for others to watch, jeer, move kit from one end of the res to the other, pacemake etc. The weather is predicted to be kind, so could be a good morning out.