Birch - likewise my wava usually better at short distances, but i get more enjoyment from long. I was mostly road for more than 5 years. Been mostly trail running at over marathon distance the last 5 years and do enjoy that more than the roads (peace, tranquility, etc...) even when quite a tough pace overall the early miles seam nice and easy. Worth a try to see if suits and a bit of navigation isn't as hard as it looks. odd distances and Varied terrain add to sense of adventure and prevent to much fixation on time.
VTR - quite some miles on that plan, that's probably the key to efficiency though. Good luck with fizz.
Lorenzo - cracking mile time not long a get some pretty grueling long stuff.
Leslie - track for u sounds quitr the adventure. I like the benefit of a dog and Walkerless track bit have to pay for priverlage over here so swings and roundabouts.
g-dawg - sounds like some good pace in training. you always did seem to be able to operate at good pace many days a week.
OO53 - enjoy harrogate, nice place for a road run and some cracking off road not far away. Great 10m road race a short drive away with challenging hills. Guy fawkes 10, not sure if they map route on web but will worth a go for a challenging 10 if you have the time.
OK here, some of paces still seeming challenging. But local club 8m race on slundulating course on Tuesday went well. Pace only 12sec/m off my track 10k pb (2012) and 5 off road one (2011, flat course).
Cracking going everybody, some good detail in reports and given me some confidence my plan is about right. Also really enjoyed BB ultra report and cycling sounds great Sj.
Not had much chance to look in never mind post, but running been OK. Keep wanting to get off road up and down the hills like i usually would this time of year, but committed to the road till September and will stick to it as feels good to do a bit more fast running. Going reasonably well, lsr upto about 100mins tomorrow, last week's 90 at 8s wasn't too much of a killer. Overwise the steady runs are getting a bit faster and most the easy ones at 8-9 pace are easy. Track/speed .., it's hard to tell as 3 v.different session in last 3 weeks.
Just need to get eating right now, too many treats....
Approaching Shap I only remember one significant valley crossing and I manage to miss the path here and was waved back on by an easy-moving Kevin Bush who I’d passed recently as he stopped for a doze in the sun (I think). I caught up with Kevin across the valley as we ascended the final moor and ran into Kirkby Stephen together. It was now about 2.30pm and I was glad of the upcoming CP, I was tiring after many hours on feet today already. And although not as hilly or hot as yesterday there had been more running and it was still a warm day.
The hosts at CP2 were just as attentive as last nights at CP1 and I enjoyed a veg Lasagne and other food and drink before getting stuck in to my preparation to tackle Swaledale and get to Richmond and CP3 before I slept again. It was tempting to stop here awhile, but I wasn’t tired enough to sleep and the longer I stayed the later I arrived at Richmond, which I anticipated would be after midnight at the earliest. I can’t quite remember what preperations and changes I made, I think I showered my feet and legs – I didn’t want to risk the comfort of a full shower at any point as might not want to start again – and then just stocked up my bag and got my maps ready……. “Oh where are my maps!”
I’d planned to save carrying a huge wedge of paper around by putting the next sections maps in the drop-bag preceding it. I’d picked up this mornings at CP1 had thought I would have this PM’s in this CP’s dropbag, but I had actually left them at CP1 where I’d put all the maps I intended to use today not just this sections. So this means I’d run out of map some point after Kirkby Stephen. Thankfully I had my GPS with loaded maps as a backup.
I got sorted in my tent for sleep and laid down before midnight. It was pretty warm in the tent so I stripped right down before getting in the sleeping bag (this was a tent personal to me btw). I didn’t sleep well at first and decided this might be because the tent was pitched on a slant and my head was lower than my feet, I swung around and got some pretty good sleep after that. Better than most till nearly 3am when I got up and started to get ready again. I’m a bit prone to faffing so I didn’t get out of the tent till nearly 3.30am and following porridge, fruit, tea and other pickings for breakfast I wasn’t out till nearly first light (4.30am). About the same time as Malcolm and Richard Palmer who I tackled the long ascent to Kidsty Pike with at a brisk pace. It was pretty windy and not much visibility up high, but it was cracking to see the unusually shaped Angle Tarn in the early morning light.
Near enough two hours later - with fleeting views of spectacular landscape all around between the hard-blown cloud-induced whiteout – we topped out and started heading down. Soon a few hundred feet further down on pretty runnable descent (with the odd scrambly bit) and the furthest east lake (or reservoir to be precise) of the national park – Haweswater – came into view. The tree-lined water is one of the quietest in the whole park and always one of my favourites back from my early long-trail days recceing the Lakeland 100 in 2010. I’d distanced my accompaniers buy time I hit lake-level, but decided to push on around the undulating and in places rocky track along as I was feeling good and happy with my pace. It’s quite a long lakeside path as is nearly the whole length of the water and on route I caught upto and passed Charl – who’d set off ~30mins before me this morning - who said he was suffering a bit, but was moving ok. Leaving the shore I dipped down through the woods and the route follows a stream in territory that feels more down-land than much of the route before and signifies the upcoming exiting of the NP.
Over various fields I passed a few more runners and got to Shap just before 9am. Though I was topping up and food and drink regularly I was glad of the organised option of a free drink at the New Ing Lodge. The staff were busy cooking up breakfast for guests in the kitchen, but were quick to oblige a cup of tea. And as per yesterday’s free-drink stop there was food in a box in their yard, toilets and taps to top up bottles. It had been quite a long 15.5m so far today due to that long climb and I still faced another 20.5m to the next checkpoint so needed to be fully loaded with water and a bit of a snack before I set off. Especially as there was little option for food and drink on-route on what is a flat to undulating moor and farmland section wedged between the Lake District and Yorkshire Dales hillier grounds. As I walked through Shap I also stopped at the co-op and grabbed a curried chicken pie for the road.
I reeled in a few more runners on the intervening miles to the next CP. Probably more than I would in any section that followed and largely due to people who’d either not stopped for a sleep at Patterdale, or not luxuriated as long as I did, who were not quite doing my pace (or were slowed by tiredness). This made me glad of sticking with the advice of sleeping where facilities were provided to avoid the ‘death march’!
This climb was long, but not as hard as to Greenup Edge and I felt semi-revitalised by the stop at the Hostel and the cooling night. Towards the top the wind was getting up a bit and I got my windproof on for the night.
The top of this climb was marked by Grisedale tarn looking spectacular at Sunset. And I had a few looks up to Dollywagon Pike and Fairfield, glad I wouldn’t be tackling another steep ~300m or so to top these today. Then came the long and fairly steady descent into Grisedale. Rocky in places, but pretty runnable this terrain played to my strengths and I could see I was gradually reeling in somebody in front (Ed Strong). He was going pretty well himself and I didn’t catch till he stopped at Grisedale. We chatted as we tackled the wooded road section into Patterdale with just enough light to avoid needing to dig out the headtorches tonight. Towards the bottom we caught up with Malcolm and Iain Smith-Ward (somebody I’d be seeing a fair bit of over the days to follow).
The George Starkey hut was our CP1 – 10.23pm – and I’d decided quite awhile ago after a tough day of hills and heat that I would be sleeping a few hours here per my pre-event plan. Joe Faulkner cooked up some cracking hot food and I picked at other food from the layed out tables. I also got my bottle filled up so I could take on a recovery drink before sleep. The group I was with were about the first to take up the sleep in tents option, those before were obviously a hardcore bunch or suffered tiredness well.