Monday 18 April 2011

Sunday 17th April - Leg 3 and Leg 4

After yesterdays steady day (only 14 miles) The plan was to meet Paul at Honister to leave a car and then drive back to Dunmail ready for a much longer day.
I met Paul just after 09:00 thanks to some very slow drivers; we sorted our kit out and left my car in the car park at Honister slate mines.

Soon at Dunmail we got our selves ready and after some stretching the steep climb out of Dunmail was beckoning us on. There was no problem with low cloud today. Once at the top of the gully a quick toilet stop for me (well got to practice everything for the Bob G!). We were on the path for Steel Fell summit and once this was past met a couple out on a Sunday run from Ambleside. We ran with them both as far as Calf Crag, said our goodbyes and continued towards Sergent Man following the path this time that runs parallel with Mere beck. Once at the small col at the top, the summit was visible. The views were very impressive and the sun was very welcome as there was still a cool breeze at this altitude. The next few peaks of the Bob G past with no problems. Just the few false craggy tops leading to Rossett Pike caught us out running over them when I'm sure you can save time running round them. Down to Rossett Gill we headed up for Bow fell via the Hanging Knotts route. This was soon passed and the Very crowded summit was reached and left behind to continue forward on this leg.

Again the next few summits were reached with no real problems just a bit of side tracking off the paths but nothing too serious which lost us a minimal amount of time. We past a continuous trail of walkers coming off Scafell Pike and once we reached the summit; made our way down to Mickledore and the base of the Broad Stand. What did we do? Well we free climbed it once Paul was sure we were on the start of it. We climbed up the first two steps to what he said was the crux move. I climbed it but it was very slimey and slippery; especially for my fast dying fell shoes and a well placed hand from Paul gave me a foot hold allowing me to to mantle self to above the crux on another very slimey ledge. Paul followed on behind and i found a piton with a maillon and a bit of tat attatched. A young walker was convinced not to go any further on his idea to decend broad stand and go via foxes tarn route. Fortunately he took our advice and followed us upwards. Scafell was soon past and now the descent down to Wasdale. We followed a a faint track and ended up in scree filled gully and directly down to a stile and faint path to the bridge at the bottom joining the Brown tongue path. Not sure if this is the correct line, I need some guidance on this from anyone who knows please.

We had a good view of a Seaking that was hovering around the Broad crag area of Yewbarrow. Followed by smoke drifting off the cragg and several different hovers it was obvious this was a mountain rescue training exercise.

At the bridge we swilled the mud and grit out of our shoes; ate some food and topped up our water ready for the start of Leg 4 and the long climb up Yewbarrow. This time we followed a small trod to the right of the beck which took us to the top just 100 meters right of the summit which meant back tracking to the summit (have to watch this on the day). We dropped off the well marked path down under Stirrup Crag up to the ascent on to Red Pike. My pace slowed off now and I was sweating out more fluid than I was drinking. Knowing that there are no streams to drink from on this leg I had to ration my 1.5 litres of fluid. I will need someone up around Blacksail pass with extra water on my round I think. The day was now very warm and sunny and the views Of Isle of Man and the surrounding lakes were very impressive. (if only we had a camera! But time is tight on these runs and unfortunatley we wouldn't want to lose time, well that's my excuse).

Steeple, Pillar were past and the descent down to Blacksail pass was uneventful ready for the climb up on to Kirk fell. We ended up going up another gully which was no better than the other gully I ascended a few weeks back. I am going to have to try this again following the old fence posts to the summit. I continued slowly and watched Paul disappear in to the distance as my pace was a lot slower. The last big climb of the day on to Great Gable and once at the summit there was a nice thought of only three more summits and some easy running in front of us. Just around Brandeth my water ran out and we continued running to Grey Knotts and over the fence to descend to Honister. We stopped at a small stream to take on much needed water and filled my water bottle for more water down at the car. Thankfully they don't put a locked chain across the gate at the mine!

A another good day out on the fell and thanks to Paul once again on a good run. Both legs were completed in 10 hours 21 minutes. That's 7 minutes under my 22 hour schedule and 31 minutes under my 23 hour schedule.

Right Paul I know you like stats, this is for you...!!!
The run was 10 hours 21 Min's.
It was 27 miles long and we ascended around 13000 feet.
For me this weekend I have run 41 miles and ascended around 19000 feet.
In the last 8 days I have run 72 miles and ascended around 25000 feet.
I love stats too..... :o)

My shoes only just made yesterday my feet were hurting as they have lost all there cushioning, which as made my right heel a bit messy (no pain no gain), the sole at the front is hanging off, and the tread as worn through in places.
I didn't drink enough water yesterday and I was slightly dehydrated when I got home and with all the running I have done with no real weekends off ( just a 13.5 mile run!) I still was on time yesterday so a very pleasing weekend and the last 8 days. Cheers once again to Paul for a cracking day out.

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