Wednesday, 25 June 2014

Edale Skyline

This one has been on my list to do for some time. I could analyse why it's not happened before, but in short it was mainly the distance that scared me a little, along with not quite getting enough long training runs done. Then came winter and wet weather and I didn't fancy slogging my way up Brown Knoll. Having never run beyond 29km the whole thing felt like a big step, and while not being precious about waiting for perfect conditions I really wanted to enjoy the run.

I penciled in the end of June this year to complete the route in one go. The past few months and weeks have been spent on training for longer distance, more ascent and generally being on my feet for longer. It felt like the time had come to put a big fat tick against this one, so today was the day and today I did it. I ran the whole 34km Edale Skyline (with 1435m ascent), superbly led and pulled along (mentally, not literally) by my wonderful other half, Tim.

Grindsbrook from part way up to Ringing Roger
Descending off from Kinder south edge towards Crookstone Barn.
Win Hill off in the distance at the left
Summit trig point of Win Hill (462m)
The steep climb up to Lose Hill
Nearing the top of Lose Hill, looking across to Back Tor, Mam Tor, Rushup Edge and Brown Knoll
Mam Tor summit trig (517m) with Lose Hill now behind us
Heading up onto Rushup Edge, looking back to Mam Tor and The Great Ridge
Looking across the Grindslow Knoll
Pagoda stones on the south edge of Kinder
The final descent back down to Edale with Grindslow Knoll across the valley
Leaving Ringing Roger
Rocky underfoot....this was starting to hurt my feet now as we descended the zig-zags!
Made it to the finish field, and continued to run back to the van
After making it back to the van we enjoyed an iced lolly, milk, bananas and topped up with plenty of water. The run had been mostly overcast with a slight breeze which was very welcome but it was really warm. I ate 3 chocolate geobars and drank about 1ltr of water. I suppose I could have done with more water, but having practiced my eating and drinking on all my runs I knew I'd be ok. I'd secretly hoped for a sub 5hr run on this route having done the first half of the skyline in just under 2.5hrs last year I thought it should be possible. So, with a finish time for the whole run (incl the short bit from and to the van) of 4:24:40 I'm really chuffed. I had to force myself to keep going from about Brown Knoll, and from Grindslow Knoll I started to think a sub 4:30 was possible. Strava moving time reckons 4:16:42, but either way I'm super happy and will enjoy a well earned beer tonight.