Tuesday 31 May 2005

Tenzing-Hillary Everest Marathon - 29th May

Fresh from April's Everest Sky Race, Dangima Sherpa (4:19:17) and Yangdi Sherpa (6:06:02) retained their titles at the Tenzing-Hillary Everest Marathon on May 29th.
nepalnews.com | everestmarathon.com
Dangima Sherpa and Yangdi Sherpa
Meanwhile, Apa Sherpa (48) from Thame village, Solukhumbu, climbed Everest for the 15th time on May 31st - nepalnews.com

Jura Fell Race - 28th May

Results| Ronnie's Jura report
The annual Isle of Jura Fell Race turned out pretty much a wash out. The campsite was battered with torrential rain and strong winds on Friday night. On the Saturday morning the weather was still sufficiently vile that race organiser Andy Curtis had to go for the bad weather route option for only the 2nd time in the race's 21-year history.

The "short" course isn't actually any shorter, but has nearly 2,000ft less climbing by going round the three Paps instead of over them. The weather was relentlessly wet and windy throughout.

Ian Holmes was a comfortable winner, making up for going off route last year. This time Ian was more careful by running with others through the mist and rain, before winning the race on the final 3.3 mile road section. Mark Hartell finished 2nd, having lead the race from Checkpoint 1 until Three Arch Bridge.

The Start| Soggy running conditions

Tuesday 24 May 2005

Scottish Islands Peaks Race - 20th to 22nd May

Running Results| Sailing Results

Starting to recover now from the weekend's excesses. For the runners, the weekend consists of:
  • 4½ miles cross country prologue at Oban
  • 23 miles of purgatory on Mull slogging out to Ben More and back from Salen (Friday afternoon)
  • 15 mile jaunt round the Paps of Jura from Craighouse (Saturday morning)
  • 18 miler on Arran to Goatfell and back from Lamlash Bay (starting 1.30 Sunday morning!)
  • 100-metre dash up the pontoon to finish at Troon Club House

    More or less 60 miles total running. The runs are interspersed with being bounced around in a small boat, feeling too sick to eat, getting cold and wet, and managing virtually no sleep.

    Our boat was Blue Chip - a 28ft Trimaran (Corsair28). Our excellent crew were Steven Garrett (skipper), Derek Cardiff and Graham Goudie; the runners were Chris Upson and Damon Rodwell, both of Westerlands.

    The race kicks off at 12 noon on Friday outside Oban sailing club, and finishes (hopefully) on Sunday at Troon harbour. Last year we didn't finish until on 5.30am Monday morning, but this year we'd comfortably finished, dismantled the boat, and were eating breakfast at Troon club house 10.30 Sunday morning. Far more civilised.

    Only 5 senior teams had finished when we left Troon:
    1st Playing FTSE, 47ft Beneteau monohull (runners Gary Thorpe, Simon Stainer)
    2nd Two Hoots, 35ft Shuttleworth Catamaran (Adrian Davis, Es Tresidder)
    3rd Blue Chip, about 40 minutes behind Two Hoots (Chris Upson, Damon Rodwell)
    4th Scarlet Fever, 36ft monohull, (Jane Meeks, Liz Cowell)
    5th Kinetic, 27ft trimaran, (Paul Fettes, Graeme Stewart)

    Phil Davies and Jon Whittaker were Kings of the Bens as fastest runners.

    Reports by Damon and Manny here

    Race Routes
    Sailing Route| Oban Run| Mull Run| Jura Run| Arran Run
  • Wednesday 18 May 2005

    On the Road in North-West Scotland

    Check out this fascinating website. Exciting slide show of road out of Poolewe here.

    Monday 16 May 2005

    Fisherfield Forest - 14/15 May

    Clocked up my 1300th Marilyn at the weekend.

    Went for a long walk from Gruinard Bay over Beinn Dearg Bheag, Beinn Dearg Mor, Beinn a'Chaisgein Mor, Beinn a'Chaisgein Beag, Beinn Lair, Meall Mheinnidh and Beinn Airigh Charr, finishing at Poolewe. Only 5 Corbetts left now.

    Camped Saturday night at the head of Fionn Loch. Fantastic sunset across the loch. Perfect sunny weather on Saturday. Grey, misty and rainy on Sunday. It took quite a while to hitch back from Poolewe to the car at Gruinard, but I got there in the end. I didn't fancy walking the 15 miles along the road (see post above).
    Slioch and Loch Maree - Friday evening Walking in by the Guinard River Silver Birches beside Gruinard River Track beside Gruinard River Loch na Sealga Loch na Sealga and Beinn Dearg Bheag Beinn Dearg Bheag Beinn Dearg Bheag An Teallach across Loch na Sealga Beinn Dearg Bheag summit ridge Beinn Dearg Mor and Beinn Dearg Bheag Looking back down the Beinn Dearg Bheag summit ridge Summit of Beinn Dearg Bheag Airy east top of Beinn Dearg Mor Looking back to An Teallach between Beinn Deargs from Beinn a'Chaisgein Mor A'Mhaighdean Ruadh Stac Mor and A'Mhaighdean Carnmore A'Mhaighdean Beinn Airigh Charr Carnmore Sunset over Fionn Loch Sunset over Fionn Loch Sunset over Fionn Loch Cold and grey Sunday morning - camping by Fionn Loch

    Friday 13 May 2005

    John Muir Trail

    I had an idea last night about hiking the John Muir Trail next year, possibly September 2006. The guidebook says it's 21 days from Yosemite to Whitney Portal, but I'd hope to do it in around 10. There seems to be a problem regarding food, i.e. there is nowhere to buy any. And what you do carry needs to be seriously protected from bears and rodents. Obviously the faster you do the trail, the less food you need to carry. More planning required. Any advice welcome.
    Hiking the John Muir Trail

    Thousands of tired, nerve-shaken, over-civilized people are beginning to find out that going to the mountain is going home; that wildness is necessity; that mountain parks and reservations are useful not only as fountains of timber and irrigating rivers, but as fountains of life.
    John Muir

    I've bought this guidebook, which looks pretty good:

    Thursday 12 May 2005

    Dumyat - 11th May

    4th race of the Bog and Burn series. Perfect weather. Still suffering from Himalayan fatigue and chest infection. My race not helped by lower back being in spasm, and large blister forming under my heel during the descent - combination of new shoes and very dry conditions.
    SHR Report

    Monday 9 May 2005

    Section 18C - 8th May

    Went Marilyn bagging yesterday across the Corran ferry on Ardgour. Cold and windy with squally showers. Bagged Beinn nam Beathrach (582m) and Beinn Mheadhoin (739m). Bitterly cold and sleeting on Beinn Mheadhoin. Some great views across Loch Linnhe on the descent. Puts me on 1293 Marilyns
    Stunning light looking into Glencoe
    Looking back to Buachaille Etive Mor
    Driving through Glencoe

    Ben Lomond Race

    Results | Carnethy Photo Report

    A good turnout of nearly 120 runners. Cold and squally on the summit ridge. 4 minutes slower to the summit than last year, but much the same on the descent (53 up, 28 down). Marc McColl unfortunately broke his ankle. Nige was knocked back from 3rd to 5th for shaving a few corners. Steffen finally got under the 90 minutes!

    Brian Marshall cruising to victory
    Malcolm Patterson working hard for second place
    Making hard work of it, and being tracked by Chris Davies who passed me on the descent
    Andrea Priestley being tracked by Sandy Bennett

    Thursday 5 May 2005

    Kaim Hill Race - 4th May

    Briefly leading eventual winner Alan Smith at Kaim Hill Race
    Briefly leading eventual winner Alan Smith at Kaim Hill Race