Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Snowy run with Glossopdale

Driving home from Manchester this afternoon, I couldn't help but be struck by the greenness of the lower ground, contrasted with the stark whiteness of everything above 500 metres or so- above Glossop on the hills.
Despite the rather exciting prospect of heading out into the snow this evening, I was a bit reluctant to actually get out. The blister I sustained the other day from the long nav run is still there, and I suspected it was going to hurt even more by the end of the run.

Ah well, the lure of the snow was a bit too much. I put on shorts, a slightly thicker base layer than normal and a gilet, with windproof etc in a bag, and went on out. It was good to see a few hardy souls out this evening, including Stevie K from Pennine, who came along for a trot.
We started out from Mossy Lea, up the track, wet and rocky underfoot. Not the nicest terrain in the world- which is why its a horrible ending to the Shelf moor race route- but thats another story. Soon enough we were going up Doctors gate, mud, coldness, and very cold running water. Running up the hill was good though as it kept us warm. Dom even took his top off because of the heat...

The snow started building up on the ground- it had been scattered around from the bottom, but now it was shoe height. We ascended, and the snow got deeper. Up to the top and a left along the top. At this point, the snow was too deep to run so we were reduced to walking- well, at points, wading, through the snow. It was rather delightful snow, soft and fluffy with no footprints in it. Deep, at points, but at other times very runnable.
We got down to the stream in Crooked clough, crossed over and went up toward the Trig. At some points I was on hands and knees to get up the slopes- still not all that cold, just as long as we kept moving.

The wind hit us as we got onto the top, so I donned a windproof as we cruised across the top of the moor. When I say cruised, I mean stumbled, fell, grovelled, rolled and generally dragged ourselves across. Anyone that hadn't already gone up to their thigh in a snow covered grough or fallen over in rather spectacular style had done so by the end of the leg.
Then down past Dog Rock, still lots and lots of snow, my feet were numb so I wasn't getting any gyp from them, then as we went down Lightside the snow started getting thinner, the rocks started coming up (as it were) and all of a sudden it became a bit more painful to run- not necessarily because of my blister, but because my Baregrips are so thin under the foot. Maybe my light was fading as well, so I started slowing down.
It was only about 12.5 km altogether, but it was a really good fun blast in the snow.

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