ian bowles 2

Latest posts by ian bowles 2

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Cape Wrath 2016

Posted: 20/08/2015 at 22:18

Cape Wrath and Dragons Back  have  a different attitude to hosting ultras. I believe there is much less emphasis on relying on good will for Marshalling and other duties. The expenses ,travel costs paid ,meals and free Kit given to Marshals are much more generous then at other events. This all costs but probably gives the organiser more control over the event making the whole thing more slick. For a competitor you get a more predictable race but have to pay for the service.

 For myself I rather prefer the more raw but cheeper events. (carrying all my own gear adds to the fun for me. )

 You have the choice of what type of event you enter which is fine by me.

The only type of race I do object to is where you end up paying for things like shiny sign written  vans and flash banners but discover the actual things you need like good CP food and support is missing!

 Would I like to do The Dragons Back and the Cape Wrath? The answer is yes but I fall apart in hot summer races , that fact added to the price rules them out for me.

 Put them on in the winter and I would start saving up.

Dartmoor Perambulation

Posted: 20/08/2015 at 21:54

E mailed the organiser. Evidently the course and checkpoints published on the website are not the actual course. The the new GPX file will be published soon then they will mark the whole course on Dartmoor. 50 miles of marks!  This could prove interesting as the trails are often indistinct unlike the UTMB which is fully marked but on easy to follow trails.

I hope they have a forrest of bamboo poles and plenty of man power. At least they have 16 days left  to  get the route sorted.

Dartmoor Perambulation

Posted: 18/08/2015 at 22:04

Entered this one as it is on home ground. Getting a bit worried about the route much of which is trackless on the ground. Todays Recce has not filled me with confidence as one control is located in a deep bog (location verified by GPS and map) Sunk up to my waist twice and retreated . I suspect the planner has not run the course!

Trying to keep an open mind. We shall see?

RAT Cornwall

Posted: 18/08/2015 at 21:56

Blew up at 44miles with severe dehydration. Could not hold anything down. One 20 mile race over the last few months was just not enough (predictable really!). On the plus side I feel far stronger now having done long runs for the last few days.

Getting proper training and miles in for the Perambulation.

RAT Cornwall

Posted: 10/08/2015 at 21:11

I am in for the 64 miler as well. Done not nearly enough training so plan to go real slow and see how it goes. (one 21 mile run in the last 5 months is not really sufficient) Did it in 3013 and I must admit it hurt! You spend ages plodding up one steep cliff path only to go back down and face the same over again. The last ten miles is hell as you know can almost see the finish but have to take the long hilly rout to the bitter end.

Unofficial, alone ultra run - am I bonkers?

Posted: 10/08/2015 at 21:02

Just go out and enjoy the experience. By the way what exactly is FLAT?

The Spine

Posted: 11/05/2015 at 20:16

Don,t get over hung up on kit advised by sponsored runners. Start by deciding what you need and what can work for you. The lightest kit is not the best for this race. Fighting an ultralight zip in a snowstorm with frozen hands can put you out of the race.

Assume nothing will stay waterproof so Merino wool type undergarments which stay warm when wet are a must as I learned this year.

Kit lists from racers who have only done the race once will only only give you help from the conditions of that year. There are also several written by racers who never made the finish line. What works for the first few days may not be any good for the whole race.

 This is what I put together after 3 Spines modifying the blog each time I learned more. (inc this years DNF)


I shall probably update the list again before the 2016 race.

The Spine

Posted: 05/02/2015 at 14:40

At one point I thought I was getting the hang of Orienteering . Then at a night event one old guy walked past me at the start gate without dibbing. H took the map ,studied it for 5 mins then put it back in the tray, dibbed and walked off into the dark with no map. You guessed it he still beat me by 20 mins by memorising the whole course and run/walking it in the dark!   I nearly gave up for good.

The Spine

Posted: 04/02/2015 at 21:48

Read this one and you may end up signing on ,but perhaps not?



The Spine

Posted: 28/01/2015 at 20:29

Strange things happened to feet this year. First point was no ones waterproof socks stayed waterproof. I got one small blister on the sole of my right foot. this was attended to by the medics at CP2 , By the end of the race it had healed! I always wear two pairs of Socks ( 3 including the waterproof socks). Most blister damage happens on day one as you move much faster and any rubbing is more severe . Once you slow down blisters are caused by bad fitting shoes or the early damage getting worse.

The medics always say I have good feet but I suspect it may be the double sock rule and the fact that ZT Wings are exactly matched to my foot shape (I can run an  ultra in them straight out of the box.I don,t really have to think much about my feet. 

With regards to conditions yes they were far worse than previous races hence the early high drop out race. The biggest difference this year was that the remaining pack did not have to deal with real sleep deprivation as we kept being held at CP,s. 

 No one was really tested by the lack of sleep so the later drop out rate was reduced to almost zero. If the race had carried on without the extra free rest time then I suspect we would have had only a 25% finish rate. I don,t think this years novice runners really appreciate how lucky they were. If they return in 2016 they will be in for an unexpected shock!

 Lack of sleep will be hardly mentioned in this years blogs . GKD will tell you about sleep issues.

1 to 10 of 301

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