Friday, 31 May 2013

No 30 A different tour of Pendle.

I naively thought I had recovered- from the H110, from the cough and sore throat.... it was to be a hard day. My tour of Pendle only including climbing the lump once but even running around it takes some time.

 It didn't help that there was no need to push the pace or that I decided to explore some paths I had never been on before (and some I will never return to if I can help it).
By 9.35 I was parked in Wiswell and admiring the pretty village and rather grand houses. As I turned onto the public footpath uphill and onto the moor the houses got grander.  Before I had reached the radio mast it was clear it would be warm and I took off my thermal. Shorts and T shirt all day- can't be bad. After the masts the bridleway dropped to the south side of the ridge but it was access land so I tried to keep to the ridge and reach the trig point.
I managed it but there were no trods and I got wet muddy feet for my efforts. Before long I crossed the road at the Nick of Pendle and headed up the big grassy track. I was slow but at least this was dry and runnable. I did not see a sole close enough to speak to and the Trig of Pendle summit was deserted.  I enjoyed the descent to the Ogden reservoirs but my big toe was begining to throb. It improved a bit on the track and road down to Barley. Beyond Whitehough was new territory and I had no idea what the paths or hills would be like.
 It also meant I had to keep a close eye on the map. I had never been to Weets Hill so a new trig was gained and I even found a legal way off the access land.  Some bits were a delight and others had me muttering as I got wet and muddy again and again. Then came the big slog down towards Gisburn and the Ribble Way. I cut the corner a bit so missed the chance of an ice cream in Gisburn. The Ribble Way was relatively easy running but my feet were starting to feel trashed. Both blisters had filled to bigger than they were after the H110 and the ball of my right foot was on fire. At least there were no big downhills to hurt my toe. By Sawley the river was looking quite inviting and I was flagging. I know this section reasonably well from my two runs on the Ribble Way challenge. A bite to eat got me moving, but still not very fast. Shortly after Eddisford Bridge I started to make tracks away from the river and back to the car.
 There was not a very direct route but I didn't get lost and managed to work my way across the fields and a few stretches of road before crossing the busy A59 safely. It was a tough 28, nearly 29 miles and had taken well over 5 hours even though it was only undulating after Pendle summit. Still what a wonderful day to be out in the sunshine and another ultra bites the dust.

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