Thursday, 20 June 2013

Don't cut off your dreadlocks

Back running again

I've done very little running this month, mostly because of Stef's Bob Graham but also because I just fancied a bit of a break after a tough spring's training. However, on Tuesday evening we had a run along the river out to the Friends Meeting House and back, which was a great way to get going again. We were lucky to see little owl in a spot where we've not seen one before along with dipper, heron, oystercatcher and curlew

Last night our Wednesday night social run was from Slaters Arms in Bradley and it was a classic. We ran up to the stone men on Skipton Moor in beautiful summer sunshine before adjourning to the terrace at the back of the pub to drink Timothy Taylors Golden Best eat crisps and wait for the sun to set. Sadly, we got 'midged off' before sunset but it was great fun any way! 

Saturday, 15 June 2013


We did what normal folk do today. We went shopping, called in Costa after meeting Stef's son Sam, ate lunch out together and did a bit more shopping. We didn't spend five or six hours trogging up hill and down dale. No Gore-tex or Lycra was worn all day and we had frothy coffee instead of Nuuns, because there's little chance of cramp in John Lewis. Tomorrow we'll be going to the local hash meeting for a social three miler rather than the Lake District. It's the first weekend of the rest of our lives and I'm enjoying it so far! 

Monday, 10 June 2013

Stef's Bob Graham success

This weekend Stef and I spent a wonderful 24 hours (well 23 hours and 35 minutes in Stef's case) surrounded by club-mates, "strangers off the internet", friends of friends and dare I say, one or two living legends

Stef set off at midnight on Friday from the Moot Hall in Keswick on her third attempt at the Bob Graham Round and just after half past eleven on Saturday night she'd completed it. 42 Lakeland peaks, around 66 miles of running and walking, and one Mt Everest's worth, give or take, of vertical climb

I watched Stef start and then after a nap in the car saw her through all the rest-stops / road crossings. She was a little behind schedule at the first and I was concerned she wasn't going well. At the second she was ahead of schedule and then my concern was she was going too quickly. At the third in Wasdale these concerns melted away as I watched her climb Yewbarrow, and at the fourth at Honister in the slate mine quarry car park I picked up my ruck-sack, laced up my fell shoes, and set off on the final 10 miles or so with her and a couple of pals to help her get the job done

Three club-mates who had little experience of the round or the mechanisms of getting someone to complete it ,pulled out all the stops, mashing gallons of tea, making umpteen bacon sandwiches, cutting cake and driving around the district from one obscure lay-by to another. They were fantastic 

Around a dozen or 15 folk came along to encourage Stef, carry her cagoule, tells stories, wipe the sweat from her eyes and at times not far off force-feed her with gels, Kendal mint cake, cold boiled potatoes and litre after litre of water and Nuuns. They did what they love doing

These people are our friends; our community; and we're both very proud to be able to say that

Monday, 3 June 2013

Mallerstang Yomp

It was the Yomp yesterday. I much prefer the old name 'Mallerstang Yomp', but as far as I'm aware the challenge is the same: 23 miles walking or running with around 4,300 feet of climb

We ran the event back in 2010 when I was training for my first (failed, two) Bob Graham attempts and that day was misty. So misty in fact that yesterday I couldn't remember any of the second half of the route from our previous outing! The route is unusual in that it seems to have a lot more ascent than descent (I suspect this is because the climbs are ploddy and long; probably just all about runnable) and the descents are fairly steep (the last descent is the second half of a popular annual fell race)

Yesterday was a counter for our club championships ('Extreme' category) and because of that there were six runners out in club colours, which is about three or four more than a lot of longer challenge events we do. Last time we Yomped we did 4 hours 44 minutes but as usual I'd forgotten the exact time. Yesterday we did 4 hours 42 minutes. There's nothing like consistency is there?

King Tubby