Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Cheap Trick

If I don't have to go out early in the morning I sometimes give Stef a lift over to Ilkley to catch the Leeds train. This usually involves a trip to La Stazione for coffee. This song came on the radio there this morning. I remember it from being at school and think I might have a copy of the single somewhere. The cafe is great with proper coffee, cakes and good value sandwiches etc at lunchtime too. Highly recommended for anyone visiting Ilkley!

Monday, 26 March 2012

Sunday, 25 March 2012

All go

We've had a busy weekend at home. Highlights included:

- tapas in the Swan on Friday evening
- selling Stef's old car on Saturday afternoon
- an enormous 99 ice-cream each at Barden Bridge to celebrate the sale
- seeing a ewe with three new born lambs in a local field
- hearing several chiffchaffs over the weekend and then seeing one this evening
- a stunning 8mile run over the Beacon and Round Hill this afternoon in vest and shorts
-our first barbecue of the year!

Fred Wesley

We were listening to Craig Charles last night on 6 Music and he played this. I'd not heard it before but love Fred

Friday, 23 March 2012

Simon's Seat night race

It was the now traditional 'last timed training run' of the winter last night up Simon's Seat from the Craven Arms in Appletreewick. I set off relatively quickly (only third last after a few hundred yards!) and nearly caught a lad from Wharfedale on the steepest part of the main climb 

A bit further up John, who I'm doing the Saunders MM with later in the year, caught me. John and I had a cat and mouse race from there on with him letting me show him the way (I found out later in the pub). We ended up in a sprint finish from outside the New Inn back to the Craven. I came second in the sprint

John and I think we'll be well matched for the Saunders and we need now to start thinking about a weekend dress rehearsal in the Lakes with MM kit etc. I'm not a fan of small stuffy tents and John must be well over six feet tall so it might make for an interesting night on the hill. Stef has just seen what I'm posting and she wants to come along too, not surprisingly as she's a big camping fan!

The Orioles

Wednesday, 21 March 2012

Winter's done

It was our last KCAC headtorch run of the 'winter' tonight. There was a great turn out and I felt good running; light on my feet, with a bit of bounce in my legs. I've not done much running since the Hobble so maybe the rest has done me good?

There's the usual end of season 'timed training run' tomorrow night up Simon's Seat from Appletreewick and I'm hoping to make it. That'll probably be it for running in the dark then until next autumn, unless I have a run over leg 2 of the Bob Graham at some point during the summer

From next week Wednesday night runs move around the local Keighley and Craven area and a few old favourite pubs have already been suggested (The Narrowboat in Skipton, The Kings Arms in Silsden, our local The Swan). There was talk tonight of one or two new ones so it'll make for interesting reading when Brett publishes his list

Tuesday, 20 March 2012

Monday, 19 March 2012

A lovely weekend in the country!

We spent the weekend at Dave and Sara's house-sitting and looking after the animals on their smallholding. They have two pigs that needed feeding twice a day (my favourite job), geese to feed in the morning, two farm cats to keep an eye on, plus chickens (we had fried eggs for breakfast on Sunday, which were still warm when we collected them and had the most wonderful golden-yellow yolks)

On Sunday we went out for an hour and half run over Pinhaw Beacon and it was perhaps my running highlight of the year so far. The views from the top were amazing in all directions (Ingleborough, Simon's Seat, Beamsley Beacon and the Lakeland fells could all be seen). It was Stef's first run over this way and I doubt it will be her last!

There are loads of birds around over the weekend including green and greater spotted woodpecker, buzzard, bullfinch (a really handsome pair), meadow pipit and a noisy nuthatch. We also flushed a flock of maybe 80 to 100 curlew on our run when I got us temporarily mislaid in a mass of tussocks not long after setting off. In my defense I usually do the run in the dark with Dave and Stef loves tussocks, err, honestly she does

Thursday, 15 March 2012


I had a meeting over in Lancashire this morning and drove back home through the Trough of Bowland. Bowland is wonderful and without really trying I spotted curlew, oyster catcher and lapwing plus a meadow pipit. Lunch was taken at Puddleducks at Dunsop Bridge (steak and kidney pie with very short shortcrust pastry) and not long after that I saw a pair of dippers after stopping by a likely looking spot for a minute or two. I'll have further meetings over that way and I'm already looking forward to driving over again

Natty Supper

I had a night out in Leeds last night with some of my new colleagues. A pair of pints (excellent Leeds Pale) were followed by chicken tikka, daal and garlic naan plus two large bottle of Cobra in the Narwaab. It was a good evening!

Monday, 12 March 2012


The Hobble usually leaves me in real pain for days but I managed a steady 3mile walk by the river yesterday and a 6mile run down the Dales Way to Ilkley and back along the 'bottom road' through Nesfield this evening. Maybe I'm fitter than I thought? Well that, or perhaps the thought of left-over Chinese micro-waved for tea got me moving?!

Tony Allen

I fired this up on YouTube and Stef said, 'that sounds funky!'. Enough said

Sunday, 11 March 2012

Haworth Hobble 2012

Well, I set off like a lunatic and was at Manikinholes in about three and half hours. At that point the wheels fell off big style. I managed to get up Stoodley Pike but then slipped crossing the stile on the descent. Cue me rolling around in the mud with the most spectacular cramp I think I've ever had. Several runners helped me get moving again, including a passing Ben Mounsey (CVFR Captain) out on a training run (thanks Ben, you're a bloody star)

In spite of not feeling too bad for a few miles the climb on tarmac after the last check point felt like the North face of the Eiger with me weaving all over the road and really fancying a nice sit down. I had a brief chat with a passing Britnick complete with new Runfurther tattoo and then I noticed the legend that is Wendy Dodds appearing behind at alarming speed. She dragged me over the Top o' the Stairs and past Nick whilst telling me she'd got lost twice and had to pull a '3cm' nail from her foot earlier. Wendy blasted off up towards Penistone Hill leaving me for dust but I finished reasonably strongly in 6hour17mins-ish

When Ben and co where getting me back to my feet (literally) I was thinking of chucking all my trainers out and taking up flyfishing full-time again but I'm just about to enter the Calderdale Hike. It's a bit slower than the Hobble and suits my style of running better I think!

It was great to see so many friends, bloggers and FRA forumites out including Ian Charters, Nick and a very slimline looking Mike D-H, who had a cracking run

Friday, 9 March 2012

Hobbling tomorrow

It's the Haworth Hobble tomorrow. I think I've done it six times before but with Dave dropping out due to work-related issues it'll be my first solo effort. I've no idea how I'll go on because although I feel quite fit and have done plenty of short runs the last three or four months I've done no long ones with the exception of the Wadsworth Trog. I'm predicting around 6hours 30minutes but might just pull something a bit quicker out the bag. Anyway, it's one of my favourite days of the year tomorrow and I'm sure I'll a) get round okay and b) enjoy getting round greatly. It's pasta for tea as always but the big descision is which shoes to wear!

The Gladiators

No, not Matlock Town but the roots reggae act!

Thursday, 8 March 2012

King Creosote And John Hopkins

I'm absolutely shattered at the moment. Shattered but very happy with my new job. It's been great going out most days seeing customers in the UK (I was in Leicester for the first time for maybe five years yesterday) and I seem to have really hit the ground running with some sales already made

King Creosote and Jon Hopkins don't have anything to do with my work but they did make my favourite record of last year and this track always reminds me of pottering around on the coast looking at rockpools and watching wading birds, which are things I love to do when I'm not working

Monday, 5 March 2012

Devon weekend

No running to report over the weekend but Stef and I managed a brisk thirty minutes or so round the village including half a mile on the Dales Way on Friday morning before work. We have been in Devon all weekend with Sam and Tom but I went down to the Axe estuary yesterday morning for a bit of bird watching before everyone else was up. A ringed plover and a grey plover were probably the best I managed but I've since found out there was a stone-curlew on the marshes nearby on Saturday!

Thursday, 1 March 2012

Another five

We got out for the club run last night for the first time in what seems like ages. Another five miles or so in the new shoes and I'm impressed with the grip from a seemingly modestly studded sole. It was a fine evening for run out and the Ilkley Black and Goose Eye Bitter went down well at the Lion afterwards