|First lady and good overall|
|Winning team Krypton at Runfurther|
|The 'Bold and Beautiful' at Manly|
|Strange trig points in NZ|
|The winner in 21 hours or so. Awesome!|
|Fowlers Pass recee. Hot|
|Beautiful scenery and good paths|
|More gnarly tracks near the end|
We camped at the start next to the historic Fowlers Hut and DOC loo. Couldn't sleep in it as there were birds nesting in the chimney and mice under the floor boards.We receed the first section up to Fowlers Pass which was on a good path and beautiful.
|Contemplating the race route|
I knew now that only 7 had entered the miler- 5 guys, Lena and I.
We met Lena when she came to scope out the start and I had made contact with Ben via facebook. He came second in the end.
|The last 16km loop- I never got that far in the end|
|Taking a pole for the river crossings|
I started jogging along happily with Ben. It was soon clear he was faster than me and so I let him go. Perhaps even on this first 6 km loop I had gone too fast but it felt OK. By now we had done two major river crossings and I was worried about how my feet would stand up to being soaked for so long. I was also worried about how little running I had done in the last 6 weeks. It's never the issues you expect that cause the problems in the end!
Up and over Fowlers Pass was fine and I gave Bob a cheery wave as he stood there taking photos before going off for his mountain adventure.
|Still smiling at this stage|
So what were the lessons.
1. Prepare better in terms of what to expect from a race and don't allow anything to be left to chance even if it means providing your own maps.
2. Don't make hasty decisions; review all the options. Talk them through out loud or even write them down. Once I had had a cup of tea and a rest I was feeling a bit better. The heat was going out of the day. I could have waited and eaten.
3. Don't decide to quit on the way INTO a CP. I had enough time for Lena to catch me up and then to go with her. I even had time to go an lie down for an hour or so and then decide whether to continue.
4. I had visions of my fastest 100 miler yet. Ha ha. Perhaps a slow time would have been better than a dnf.
5. Written notes for your drop bags reminding you what to do etc. This worked well for me on the Northern Traverse. I should have done it again Also write on your hand... eat, drink, enjoy....
6. Expect the unexpected. I was worried about having soaking wet feet all day but they were fine. I was worried at no real running for 6 weeks but my legs were OK. My dodgy foot was OK and behaved thanks to the mostly grassy paths. the heat was awful but the hernia was the real issue. It had never happened DURING a run before. (and has not happened since)
So did I do the right thing or did I 'bottle it'? I know the lack or route marking was making me wary. I know the lack of map really stressed me. I know not having enough of the right food didn't help. Why didn't I wait for Lena? Why didn't I aim to get back down to the Henry CP? or even to the Lake Guyon CP?
It took me several days to get over this and there were some tears. In the end I told myself it was ridiculous and to get a grip - it was after all just a race and really not that important in the big scheme of things. Yet I am not truly over it and still question my decisions.
Perhaps I need to go back and do the race in two years time now I know better what to expect. maybe this will lay the Ghost.
Now for the rest of 2019. Living out of a car, a kayak and tent in the wilds of NZ meant I forgot to enter the Haworth Hobble and so I will miss the first race in the Runfurther series for the first time in ten years. Disappointing but my fault. We have entered many of the others and I hope to do 8/12 in the series. We have also entered the LDWA 100 for the first time, plus I have entered the GRP 220km and hope to get an entry for the Tour De Geants. Time to stop moaning, worrying and to get running.