|A group portrait of GDH|
As very flexible fellshoes are not particularly great for my toes specifically- propelling off the one that hurts for long periods of time- well, short periods actually- really hurts- I decided to go out in stiff soled boots. If the sole is very stiff, I can propel myself off the entire foot without putting undue pressure on the toe that hurts. Genius. I'm kind of resting it, while getting out and about. Great.
So I appointed myself photographer, borrowed Lynnes SLR, and dressed accordingly for a cold day out. As the runners were going to be taking minimal gear, I thought as I was taking up a rucksack, I might as well make it full of useful stuff, so included extra gloves, hats, a couple of insulative jackets, a bothy bag, first aid kit, flask of hot ribena, food, water, an ice axe, crampons and a small hip flask of Blackberry Vodka. With all of that, it was a relatively heavy bag, and I ended up with a pair of 3/4 running tights on under some Windstopper G2 trousers, a base layer with a fleece and my Dragon jacket over the top.
What was interesting was that after a good few months with fell shoes being the footwear of choice around the hills, walking boots felt quite slippery with not a lot of grip. I took some walking poles as well, to help me along, and provide a bit of stability as well.
Everyone was gathering in the turning circle in Old Glossop, being amused by the few people who turned up in fancy dress. Juliens dog Brae ran around chasing snowballs and at 10:10 (or thereabouts) I took a few photos, worked out where they were going so that I could chase and put myself in a logical place for when they came down, and off they went.
|Runners in the mist- you can just see them|
|weather clearing behind|
|Again, runners heading off into the mist|
The tracks of 25 people and 3 dogs were pretty easy to follow, so I hared off up the track, fairly certain that I would catch them up before too long. It was tiring work, and I couldn't go as fast as I wanted because I needed to keep the camera bag relatively stable. If it started to swing around it got very uncomfortable, and hampered me even more so, that eventually I had to stop moving in order to sort it out.
|Fairly obvious tracks|
As I forged my way up the hill, through the snow, I noticed my feet slipping even more, and thought I would probably need to put my crampons on pretty soon- I turned a corner, and saw figures up ahead, maybe 400 metres away, again, slipping slowly into the clouds. I redoubled my efforts knowing that they were not too far ahead, they were probably going to stop soon, and I didn't need to.
Up, and round a corner, they weren't there, and the foot steps carried on, follow, follow, follow, andother corner, and a brightly coloured assortment of runners were standing in the snow just about to set off.
Camera out, more photos.
|Caught up with them all|
|You can just make out the A group in the mist|
|The B group taking the "easy" option|
I was able to get some good shots of people running through the snow, but still wasn't able to move quite as fast as I would like- partially because of the camera bag issue. However, the crampons gave me as much confidence as I would have had with a pair of fellshoes on, I just had to be a little more careful of where I was putting my feet- thankfully, I finished the run with no blood anywhere on my legs.
|Catching up with the B group again|
So, a lot of pictures, and not "really" a run, but an excellent day out, nevertheless.
|Well deserved fortification|
The afternoon was excellent as well, Charlie very generously opened his house to the masses, we brought food (and took the comments previously made of "please, No mince pies", the only mince pies in the house were mince pie flavoured crisps....)
There was food and drink aplenty, and much fun was had by all.
|It doesn't get much better than this|
There were also a few other prizes, Ian had accumulated most points across all races during the year, Nev got most improved runner, I won best newcomer (which surprised me somewhat), and Beryl was recognised for her continuing contributions and dedication to the club.
A lovely day, thanks to all involved, and especially thanks to Charlie and Annie for opening their house to us motley lot. Thankyou.
|Kilted men in the snow. What more can I say?|
|GDH heading off the tops.|
|And someone did manage to get a picture of me as well, with the weather clearing behind me.|