I’d done some minor 10k races on the roads and trails and thought I was hot shit. Fell racing is a touch different and I got my pants pulled down when I went in for the Langdale Horseshoe, a 14 mile beast taking a circular route (as is a ‘horseshoes’ wont) to and from my frontdoor (the weather wasn’t quite as good as the article suggests from last years’ race). I managed a bit of respectability with my placing but it can get a bit humbling when the results sheet shows that you’ve been spanked by a LOT of Vet40s and 50s! Guys and girls twice your age and more!
With some thought and a bit of cunning I decided that my endurance heyday was still to come and that if I want to delay the embarrassment of further beatings by the granny and grandads of the Lakes it would be more prudent for me to focus on shorter, steeper races. The next race I managed was a straight up and down affair in neighbouring Wasdale, a quick hop over Scafell from where I’m living in Langdale. Starting and finishing at The Screes Inn (a pub is where all good runs should aim for) you pretty much put your blinkers on and freestyle it for the top of Whin Rigg (a hill) and back. Due to the lowly nature of the race, and it conveniently clashing with other more important races elsewhere in the country, I was able to sneak in a cheeky 5th place despite getting a bit lost on finding the correct way down!
Getting the bug a bit I carried on the fluke by getting a pretty decent 16th at the Dunnerdale, a super fast horseshoe on the southern edge of the Lakes, and a surprising, and actually disappointing, 8th at the Kirkby Moor – a stupid nav error losing me the advantage and pushing me down from a very feasible 5th. Ah well.
In between times I have, honestly, been climbing. Had a couple of good trips down to the Peak bouldering and routing – with Esther (STILL crushing) cruising her first E6, got reaquainted with the Bowderstone and discovered the awesomeness of Chapel Head for bouldery sport climbing! All can be good again……just in time for the winter rains!!
Off to the grit again over the next few days. Maybe do something of note. Maybe won’t. There’s some photos of things up there…….not taken by me you understand.