Monthly Archives: March 2011

Edale Skyline

A classic fell race taking a 21 mile route starting and finishing in the village of Edale. A steep climb to start straight up to the top of Ringing Roger then Eastwards along the rim of the Kinder plateau to the top of Jaggers Clough, down to Hope Cross then a long steady climb to the summit of Win Hill. A steep drop form here down into the Hope Valley then immediately back up the other side to the top of Lose Hill. After Mam Tor and Lords Seat the featureless rough moorland of Brown Knoll is crossed before heading back around the Southern rim of Kinder with a slight detour to Grindslow Knoll before returning to Ringing Roger and plunging back to Edale again.

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Conditions on Sunday were near perfect with dry conditions underfoot and clement weather, which lead to some fast times. Winner Lloyd Taggart was only a couple of minutes outside the course record in 2hrs 36mins.

Personally, though, it was a bit of a disaster as I hurt my bad left ankle again after little more than three miles, on the innocuous descent from Crookstone Barn to Hope Cross. Decided to carry on anyway and was OK until the crossing to Brown Knoll which was very rough underfoot and reduced me to a walk for considerable periods. I did consider pulling the plug at Jacob’s Ladder but decided that the damage had already been done by then and it would probably be just as quick to get back to Edale on the race route. So onwards, running where I could and walking where the ground was too rough. It was quite a relief to make it down the final descent intact in a time of 3hrs 52mins, respectable I think given the circumstances!

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Two days on the ankle is still quite sore and to be honest it doesn’t look too promising for my plans for the rest of the year; will let it settle down for a few more days before making any decisions though. I also seem to have got a double-dose of DOMS in my right (good) leg, presumably because it was doing the work of two legs for a lot of the run!

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Open 5 Bakewell

A nice day out in Bakewell (home of the eponymous Pudding) for round 4 of the 2010/11 Open 5 series. An Open 5 is a 5 hour adventure race with two sets of control points, one to be collected on MTB the other on foot, points for each control and the aim is to get as many points as possible.

Decided to ride first – which is generally the preferred tactic as there are usually more points on offer for the bike (350 vs 250 here) and there are a few more unknowns that can’t be factored in. Did a clockwise loop North of Bakewell then back down through Chatsworth. Slogging up a long soggy grass climb out of Chatsworth I was convinced I’d done the loop the wrong way round, but dropping down the other side back to Bakewell would have been even worse going the other way. Picked up a puncture right at the end of the bike, with about a mile to go including a rough descent riding in on the flat wasn’t an option. And my CO2 adapter exploded when I tried to inflate the tyre. Other than this the only mistake I made on the bike was not to pick up the final 30 point control near to transition, but still amassed 305 point in 2 hrs 45.

Bike route

This left me with much longer for the run than I had expected! This threw me slightly and I was maybe a bit indecisive, but in the end I managed to get all of the run controls apart from two 10 pointers. Some lovely running along the River Lathwell under clear blue skies. Arrived back at transition with 25 minutes to spare which just gave time for a dash to an extra 20 point control returning with a comfortable 5 minutes to spare.

Run route

Ended up with 535 points out of a possible 600, which sounds pretty good on the face of it but it _was_ a soft course, with the winner clearing the whole 600 points in just 4 hrs 20, and many other clearances. A grand day out, it’s great getting to run and ride in places you normally wouldn’t.

Results

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