Sunday, 20 January 2013

No4 Chorley- canal, tracks and all sorts

I was tempted to just prolong my lie in but Bob brought me coffee in bed and offered to drive me to the start of my planned run. ie Come on- get and DO it! By 10.45 I was leaping out of the car and onto the canal tow path at Botany Bay. I had decided my legs could run- so long as it was not too hilly and there were no endless boggy fields. I was soon trotting along the tow path towards Adlington and enjoying myself. There were lots of dog walkers and everyone seemed vey friendly. The path was mostly packed snow with just a few icy or boggy sections. The sign for Fredericks ice cream parlour, just a short detour from the canal, made me smile. Far too cold today. I left the canal at Adlington and had to resort to roads for a bit to take me up to Rivington. I was now over a quarter of the way into my run. The crowds here were amazing- most of Horwich, Bolton and Chorley must have come out to play in the snow with snow men and sledges everywhere.
The paths had plenty of snow but my feet stayed dry throughout, even if this did take a bit of negotiation at the southern end of the park. A big loop here on decent paths let me get a few miles under my belt and I even found some solitude. Once back near the village hall I followed the Anglezarke route in reverse. It got quieter but the paths remained good ie. still dry feet.
It wasn't long before I was at White Coppice and heading on the 'new' path by the side of the goyt. This brought me out in Brinscall and I knew I was more than half way into my planned run.
 I had to resort to lanes again up the hill to Wheelton and then down to the canal. I ignored the temptations of the pub offering snacks like bacon and egg burgers - something I was to regret later. This section of canal was new to me and I had no idea what condition the tow path would be in. Luckily it was still relatively frozen and I made good progress. This was the only section where I suddenly realised I was cold and had to put my cag back on and have some food.
I left the canal on the western edge of Blackburn and was looking forward to treating myself to a bacon and egg butty in the cafe near the athletic track. I knew the main car park was being redeveloped but had not realised the scale of the work. It was shut and I couldn't see if the cafe was open. I jogged a bit further into Blackburn but found nothing open. Oh well. About turn and start the homeward leg.  One look at the fields made me reaisie that the river path would be boggy and slow so a stuck to the lanes and quickly got to Riley Green and then Higher Walton.  It wasn't as pleasant as fields and tracks but it got me back to Preston in record time. I forewarned Bob and he arrived at the Capitol Centre only a few minutes after me ( I could not do all this without him being prepared to drive me all over the place and then come and collect me, especially as we are still down to one vehicle for now).  32 miles and suddenly I was shattered.

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