Thursday, 4 March 2010

Bleasdale Circle - 5miles 1250ft

Having not done much hill running recently I needed to enter a fell race. Bleasdale Circle would be the first one I have done this year as planned races were cancelled and more emphasis has been on doing some of the orienteering events. Last year I was unable to take part in Bleasdale Circle due to a knee injury but this year I have been ok.

I remembered on the way up to Bleasdale this year that last year Chris and I commented that it isn’t much further to get up to Parlick as it is Winter Hill so we should do more training up there however that never happened but hopefully this year I might make a few more trips up that way when the Lakes is not an option.

Bleasdale is situated just past Beacon Fell country park and seems to consist of a church, school and village hall at the end of a narrow track road. Registration was in the Village Hall, thankfully as there were not too many runners attending then parking wasn’t an issue. After doing my typical NO warming up I readied for the off. The starters horn didn’t work so with a quick shout we were off.

I recalled the first field being damp last year as I watched Chris head off and this year was no different, the land was sodden and I passed one runner at the end of the first field who was struggling to recover her shoe that seemed to have been sucked into a muddy hole. As we passed through the farm in to the field and the start of the climb the snow lay on the ground besides the wall and the more we climbed the more snow lay on the ground. The route follows a track for a while before turning directly uphill and hitting a much steeper ascent. I could tell here that the past few months of struggling to run and orienteering hadn't helped me any and I had a slow climb up to Paddy’s Pole. Once on the top I picked up my speed a little and passed a group of 3 runners who had passed me on the climb up. One further runner was a little too far ahead at this point and by the time I started my run up to Parlick she was still ahead.

The day had been nice and clear, some clouds to the south but otherwise the view was great as you run along the top looking down into Bleasdale. Reaching the top of Parlick I said thanks to the marshal in his windshelter and started on the descent. As I descended I caught up with the girl in front who was taking it easy on very wet, snowy ground where as I had opted for the brakes off approach. The ground got steeper and even my walshes struggled to grip and in the end I resorted to sliding on my ar5e down the hill. As I started to speed up during the slide I ended up having to direct myself towards a large clump of grass just so that I could grab something to slow me down. It was fun but very cold on my bum!

Finally you come off the hill and through a farm to start the final run to the finish. The last couple of fields again are quite wet here and it makes for a bit of harder running to the line. With 71 finishers (I think) I came home in 64 and about 1hr 5mins. I’m gonna need to sort myself out if I am going to be good enough for the Ben Nevis Race in September.

The 1/2 tour of Pendle this weekend coming. I just hope I’m going to be able to finish it! I’ll let you know.

Mark

1 comment:

  1. Nice race report. Good luck in the 1/2 tour.

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