Sunday 1 July 2012

Peakers Stroll LDWA 1st July 25 miler

Middle of summer and I woke to some pretty decent rain in Warrington. By the time I was over in the Peak District near Buxton at Peak Forest it had cleared up to just cloudy. Generally the ground was a bit wet but not that bad considering the recent rain. No majorly excessive mud but a wee slippery in places. I had been over some of the route in various races last year and I even remember it being a bit dusty dropping down into Castleton! I arrived a little late and got started about 11.50 (the pack of runners was scheduled to leave at 11.30) my overall time was 4.23 although moving time was 3.59 on the gps which was about right for a comfortable pace and a surprising amount of elevation.

The route begins in Peak Forest at the Play school hall, cross over the main A road 623 I think? and kicks off with a bit of a climb up Windy Knoll and on to Mam Tor, Hollins Cross to Back Tor where there is a very lonely looking tree and onto Lose Hill. From there a decent descent down close to Hope and over a bridge to Kill Hill Bridge where there was a checkpoint. I took my shoe off to have a look at a funny feeling in my shoe and my sock had split near in half. I didn't have any spares so I flipped it over so the hole was on top and not under the ball of my foot and it hung on until the end ok! Another wee ascent which was quite short and sharp to Win Hill giving a good view of Ladybower reservoir and a checkpoint housing some awesome sandwiches, I had a good stop here for about 5-10 mins and made the most of the orange juice too!

A few miles along the reservoir before climbing a rough track and traversing around to Edale YHA and onto Edale checkpoint. I grabbed a sandwich and chatted at the checkpoint whilst guzzling down orange juice. Back up to Holins Cross which is quite sharp before a long descent to Castleton and a final CP before ascending Cave Dale which is quite a long gradient although I managed to run most of it and then carried on all the way to the finish passing a few more people on the long very gradual/hardly noticeable gradient of the limestone way. a quick drop down to the road over a slightly stoney track and it's in the bag with the last km being on a minor road back to the finish at Peak Forest where a delicious Asparagus soup was awaiting and some homemade baking!

A good afternoon out, enjoyed the course and it was particularly useful seeing as I have about 3 races coming up later in 'summer' passing through the area. Next weekend I would like to get up to the lake district and have another recce for the Lakeland 100. The following week I managed to enter a 70 miler 2 weeks before Lakeland 100miler. I did the Viking way 2 weeks after a 12 hour race and it was a great confidence boost. Also a number of team 9bar will be there so it should be a good catch up too!

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