Saturday, 29 November 2008

Black Run, Glentress.

We looked at the weather forecast for yesterday and saw it was to be cold, sunny and still, so thought we should go further afield for a run and planned to go down to the mountainbike trails at Glentress. Yesterday dawned sunny and still as predicted but we were still asleep and only surfaced about 11.30am.
I thought it was too late to go all the way down to the borders before running and that we should go somewhere nearer but Peter clearly had his heart set on the original plan so I relented and we went. We took head torches as it was pretty clear we'd be finishing off the 16ish mile run on steep and bumpy forest trails after dark.
It was a delightful day and although cold we warmed up nicely as we set off up and up and up. There was lovely diffuse light in the trees, red pine needles coated the paths and bright green mosses lined the way. We reached the hut, a mile from the top, and 7 miles into the run just as the sun was going down so Peter got some good sunset shots. Above the hut we were pretty much above the treeline and the path was frozen and the heather was frosted over. We thought we might have a really difficult time descending if it was all like this but as soon as we got back into the trees (which was now very dark) it was warmer and there was very little ice.
The navigation was easy most of the way as the trails are well sign posted - until we emerged out of the woods, now in total darkness, onto a main track and there was no clue as to which way to go. First of all we went the way I wanted to go which took us eventually to a sudden complete end of the road. At least it was decisive! We then went the opposite way with some trepidation which eventually took us back to the trail network and signs telling us how to get back to the carpark.
Peter was delighted by the many stars we could now see above us but I was more concerned with watching my feet. Didn't fancy taking a tumble into the night.
We arrived back at the car at 6pm. It was frosted over so we sat in it for a while with the heaters on eating apples and bananas and thawing out. We both felt we'd had a good adventure.
My new Garmin 405 coped fairly well and only struggled under the thickest foliage. Totals were 16.77 miles of running in 3 hrs 30mins.

Monday, 17 November 2008

Lakeland weekend

A weekend down in the south west area of the lake district. We were at a 50th birthday party which sounds sedate but wasn't. We ran for 4hrs in the hills with only some champagne hidden under a rock and then a lager shandy for refreshment. This felt surprisingly good. My legs are sore now however, this being the first run in the hills of any substance since the Pentland Skyline over a month ago. I took a leap over a stream that went quite well but something went wrong with Sharon's takeoff...
The Garmin unexpectedly dumped all its charge despite having been fully charged in the morning, so we've got no objective data of how far we went.