Sunday, 25 January 2009

New Forest DAR

Damn. Fairly tired.
DAR was down in the New forest this time. Its a fast course, and generally has quite a breeze to contend with- especially when on a bike.
This isnt wasnt going to be the case for us- the left hand is still a bit buggered up and there was no way I could ride a bike without large amounts of pain and probably killing my hand even further.
So the decision was to just run this one, and not even take bikes so as not to be tempted into (more) pain.
The entire plan was to complete the run as fast as possible, which, looking at, seemed to be doable in about 5 hours or so.
We set out on the loop anticlockwise, knowing there was some serious bog to be contended with on the top and left hand side of the map. The points on the right were in forest which may or maynot be there thanks to the forestry commission, and it would be better to look for those whilst in a semi-coherent state.
for the first half of the run, all was going well. we werent stopping too much, we kept things real and could remember what was happening on the map etc.
after 2.5 or 3 hours we got out of the forest and had bog problems.
Not just any bog, this was knee/thigh deep bog with tussocks that may or may not have been tussocks, scratchy heather, deeeeeep bog water, gorse, trees, and other stuff.
Looking back at it, this was the turning point. 30 mins crawling through a bog is not conducive to speed or rest, especially when vaguely lost. But we soldiered on. More bog followed and we lost countof the amount of times we were falling over.
I should point out that we were trying the bog routes as on previous occasions we had tried following the paths with less than total success. The map does NOT correspond to the paths on the ground, as we have found out a number of times.
However, as time dragged on, so did our feet. Another bog, and the inevitable bog/river crossing which was better than the first bog we hit.
Finally finished in 6:37. Totally knackered, but alive. Jibbers left knee was in pain and his right ankle was showing signs of wear.
Astonishingly I had no blisters from my Mudrocs, and apart from massive lacerations from the heather/gorse/trees and large amounts of mud from numerous knee deep dunkings in bog, I was fine.
Surprisingly I dont feel as tired as I did as last week after the fell run, despit being out there for 5 hours more. Could be the fact we were constantly eating every 30 mins, and were totally stocked up on high5 4:1. but that was about 40km in 6.5 hours.
and I dont remember there being any bogs in the London event... so that should be ok.
Good race though. Glad we didnt bike afterward, or I think we'd have died.
NB- Tom Gibbs finished the ENTIRE thing in 7 hours.

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