Early August Heatwave Weekend report

Thanks so much for all your lovely contributions this week! Amazing running by you all!

My battery is going- so Id better post this now before it goes ping!

A bimble along the Edale Skyline route from Kate Bowden

Sikobe, Zoe, Lins, Caity, and John kindly agreed to accompany on my first – but hopefully not last – foray around the Edale Skyline following the fell race route. I’m not calling it recce, that would suggest future commitment but I probably know the way a bit better now were I to be persuaded. I calculated that between my ‘guides’ there must have been around 25 previous similar excursions, however there was still much route discussion and even an attempt at a small diversion (no comment). The day started windy and misty with very little to see beyond the immediate vicinity, not ideal for recce (although it wasn’t a recce, of course). The mist eventually lifted, there was much nattering, and a number of picnic stops. It’s a great route, good company and fun had by all.

skyline

Oh so socially distanced and masked up, ready to run

To Grinah! (and back)- from Wendy McMahon

On Saturday morning a group consisting of myself, Paul Skuse, Guy Riddell, Wioleta Wydrych, Pete Tomlin and Tracey Robinson set out from old Glossop with the intention of doing 11 miles out and back to Grinah stones. What we ended up doing was 15 miles social pace with lots of laughs in baking hot sunshine, taking in a tour of rock formations around Glossop taking us pass Bleaklow, Grinah and Barrow. At one point we thought we were very lucky when eagle eyed Guy pointed out the large bird of prey he could see. You’ve probably all heard about the bearded vulture that has been flying round Glossop in the last week. We all stopped, got out our cameras only to discover it was a man in a cap! Easy mistake, not! The group nearly lost me, when I fell down a hole which came up to my chest and then later on face planted the floor. It’s nice to see that they saw me as entertainment for the day! There was only 1 casualty on the day by Tracey’s dog, a poor rabbit! Well done to Pete who didn’t realise at the beginning of the day that it would end up being his longest run ever! Summarising it all, we all had a lovely social run out. Thank you to all x

bleaklow head

(and we have a competing version)- thanks to Guy Riddell

A Covid-19 compliant group of six harriers – Paul Skuse, Me, Wendy McMahon, Pete Tomlin, Wioleta Wydrych and Tracey Robinson (plus Cecil) – headed out on Saturday morning for a yomp in the morning sunshine.

Heading out from the turning circle in Old Glossop we went up over Cock Hill on past the the Pulpit,  Wainstones, Bleaklow Stones, Grinah Stones and on to the Barrow Stones.  Basically if there were stones, we were heading there.

Notable excitement when one of us spotted a huge bird sat on the horizon.  Could it be the elusive bearded vulture?  Well it had a beard, but was also wearing a baseball cap and about 6 foot tall, so on reflection, it possibly wasn’t, I guess we’ll never know for sure. Now I know why birders (that’s the technical term, right?) wear binoculars.

We also spotted a baby rabbit/hare, which definitely wasn’t a person, Cecil dropping it at Tracey’s feet very pleased with himself.  Also a few grouse and other such creatures.  Wendy was especially adept at finding some deep holes to disappear down, and I managed to find the swampiest bit of the grains to test how well my shoes were fastened – boggy land sucks!
Mainly it was quite a slow and hot plod in at times searing heat, apart from some welcome breezes on the top.  The break at the top so Paul could have his cheese and marmite butties was definitely a welcome one with shoes coming off and maps coming out along with various snacks.Some stunning views up there, and a chance for a few members of the group to learn a bit more about our amazing local playground, so all in all a great day out.
Skuse had recce’d the route thoroughly and assured us it was about 11 miles, so when we got back with 15 miles in the bag (Pete’s longest ever) it was really no surprise.

barrow

Guy and Co. at what looks like Barrow stones. Which explains why the trip to Grinah was longer than expected.

Dig Deep Recce

This photo is all I have of a Dig Deep recce. One presumes they’re all back ok.

somewhere somewhen

Tadpole? Or not quite

Juddy Hirst was in the lake district having a dip in Crummock water in preparation for a Tadpole round. I know he got out as he sent this pic…

juddy

Dark Peak Stones Extended edition – Ian Crutchley

There’s not many people in this world that would want to be described as a “stone bagging fanatic”, but so it is when you take on the extended version of Dark Peak Stones. Yet another Ken Jones creation (Dark Peak Fell Runners), I have been unable to find any previous time for the extended route, although I have no doubt its been tackled many times. The route starts at the Snake Summit, and 32 miles and 4,000 feet of climb later, one arrives at The Sportsman in Lodge Moor, having visited 28 Dark Peak features with the suffix “Stone” or “Stones”. It would be fair to say, that the Stones visited do vary in their impressiveness, most being truly epic natural creations, whilst a few are erm, less so.

Somehow I’d convinced Mark Davenport, Dan Stinton and the ever easily convincible Lance Hamilton Griffiths to join me on this adventure, for which has been in the planning stage for a while, and the most difficult sections pre-reccied.

Whilst we have each done much further and/or climbier routes, what sets Stones apart in the difficulty department, is the terrain.  Some of the roughest and most remote terrain in the Peaks with probably 50% of the route nowhere near any form of path.  And circumstances had dictated we were attempting at the worst time of year, mid-summer, where the bracken, heather and ferns reach man eating proportions.  Furthermore it turned out to be a ridiculously hot day.

We set off running at around 7.15am, and the first few hours were lovely conditions as we battled the terrain, and steadily made progress eastward ticking off the Stones as we went.  Crossing Stainery Clough between Horse and Rocking Stones should be mentioned as the toughest section of heather bashing to this point, but there was a tougher one to come later.  We saw almost nobody until now, except a few bird twitchers hoping for a glimpse of the Vulture, and some MRT members who told us they were on their way to deal with an unexploded WW2 shell that had been found at the crash site near Bull Stones, where incidentally we had been just 2 minutes earlier.

The problems began, for me at least, at around the half way stage as we headed South along the Derwent Ridge.  The worst terrain was largely behind us, but the issue now was intense heat and dehydration, the latter becoming quite debilitating, as I was losing liquid far faster than I could take it in.  We’d cached 4 litres of water at Cutthroat Bridge, so we focussed on getting there to replenish our stocks and take a dip in the river.  And the break did help, and having cooled off we set off again towards what turned out to be the absolute worst section of energy sapping terrain I’ve ever covered.  There are precious few trods on Bamford Moor, and our direct line from Glory Stones to Buck Stone was nowhere near any of them.  The terrain is truly appalling, alternating from waist high heather, head high ferns, marsh and tussock.  Once we emerged from this nightmare, I again started struggling, and as we hit the nice runnable section along Stanage Edge to Cowper Stone, the running was being increasingly interspersed with fast walking.  The pleasant solitude of the hills earlier, was now replaced by people, people everywhere.  I have no doubt the others were struggling too, but they didn’t seem to show it, which made me feel bad as I was clearly slowing the pace down now, which remained the case form here on out.  To be fair, they didn’t make a thing of it, and we just pressed on, with the Ice Cream Van at Upper Burbage Bridge being our next goal.  Here we inhaled several ice lollies, Coke and water and soldiered on.  The clouds rolled in, which acted to reduce the temperature slightly, but the damage was done and my own recovery was again short lived.  However we only had about 7 miles to go, easier terrain now, so we just kept moving…..DP Stones 1_Rocking Stones

Its unclear if the route officially finishes at Head Stone, or at The Sportsman, but we reached the former in 8 hours 29 minutes, and the latter in 9 hours 5 minutes.  Certainly not a quick time, but we got there having largely enjoyed another tough local classic, albeit a very hard day.  The rehydration wasn’t long coming, with a pint in The Sportie, then a few more in the Royal Oak in Glossop.  I was only then able to manage my first wee since leaving home 13 hours earlier.  Dehydrated much?

Most impressive Stones = Rocking & Crow Stones – Truly breath taking, remote and relatively inaccessible to the masses.

Least impressive Stones = Glory Stones – Nothing glorious about them, and I can’t fathom why they were named at all.

Moorfield 5k – from Sikobe

A group of vets met at 9am this morning to spay (should that be slay) the Moorfield 5k road route from the Beehive Pub. Starting together as a COVIX, it was hard work in the heat of the morning – although there was a nice breeze along the top of the course. The running order back into the Beehive in quick succession (after a mid-pack shuffle on the last hill) was as follows:
Rachel Sproston(23:36),
David Chrystie-lowe(23:58),
Sikobe Litaba (24:05),
Frank Fielding(24:17), and
Rick Gwilt(25:27),
With support on the day by photographer Kate Emily
A big welcome back to Rachel from her long stint in Hong Kong – what a way to stamp your mark on the Moorfield leaderboard.
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Sunny Glossop – Moorfield 5k

FROM DA COMMITTEE

For the benefit of those not on FB:

“Committee Update re COVID19”

Further to recent guidance that came out from England Athletics/Government, the committee met to discuss what this means for us as a club and how we can return to some kind of structure with the runs/sessions offered. Please see the website for the full update: https://glossopdaleharriers.wordpress.com/

We’d like to say a very big thank you to Andy Brack, who kindly volunteered for the role of COVID19 Coordinator which is now a mandatory role for all affiliated clubs. We are very grateful for his support and time with this – his expertise will be invaluable, and enable us to reintroduce some structure.

We will keep you all informed and updated as we move forward and as and when guidance changes.

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