Sorry to hear you got caught in that deluge - my driver was pulling up to the entrance of the Raven Hall hotel just as it started to pour down so I didn't get wet after my lovely shower
I stayed on the path and didn't try the glider club track as I am famous for taking wrong turns... good to see you agreed with me about the drop and climb at the end - totally out of the question after 39 miles!
Hi YNDI, one thing I should mention, as I did endorse all your tips which worked very well at the weekend...
... the glider club one. I missed this. I couldn't work out when to leave the path and divert to the glider club to use that easier path down the hill. I did see a well worn track to the right of the path but ended up staying on the path in the end.
Captain Pugwash, on that elusive footpath after the Lion Inn: the clearly trodden footpath across the heather which cuts across the corner is a few yards after the signpost for the foopath cutting across the heather, trust me!