Dawn - Sometimes An Ultrarunner

Dawn - Sometimes An Ultrarunner

January 1, 2012

The New Hangover Challenge, 20 Miles, 1 Jan 2012

Happy New Year!  Well, I'm starting 2012 out the right way, with a long run the first morning while most people are probably still at home sleeping off the alcohol they imbibed in 2011.   My friend Sarah and her dog Pluto met us at the start, where it was a very low-key LDWA event with probably less than 100 participants.   The event went off at 9 a.m. local time, which is just when Alaska was celebrating THEIR midnight entrance into the year 2012.

I had been warned about the amount of muddy trails on this event, but it started off nicely with a couple of miles along the Calder and Hebble Canal towpath.  Our gloves came off quickly in the relatively warm 8 C temps, even with a stiff wind gusting in our face. 

The trails were a mix of field crossings, towpaths, quiet back lanes, and muddy forest trails...but not nearly as muddy as I had imagined with all the rain we've had lately.  In fact my feet would've stayed mostly dry except for a rain-soaked field of high grass to ruin that record about halfway through the day.  Since I classify outings based on how quickly I get my feet soaked and cold, this was a pretty good one!   Perhaps the extra layer of mud coating my shoes actually kept some water out? 

The checkpoints were loaded with good munchies, with one entirely devoted to Indian food.  Not sure if I've ever eaten samosa and pakora during a run before, but it went down well as most things do when I'm running easily.  Although we both did feel a little sluggish from the holiday overeating which seems hard to resist each year.  Definitely time to get back into the good habits again.

Rain and pain near the finish....
 Pluto the dog ran circles around us and kept finding sticks for us to throw to him, but by mile 15 he was looking pretty tired and quickly sniffed out our return route to the car.  The last 4 miles were back along the canal, on a flat and straight shot home, which I was inclined to walk at times, but Sarah kept the pace high to finish the route in 4:23.   Some motivation for the fast finish may be due to the rain which starting pouring down with about a mile to go.  We finished without digging out our rain jackets but only because there were dry clothes waiting in the car!  I managed to forget a spare pair of shoes so my wet feet had to endure the short drive home.


  1. I too had a very wet New Years day caper! not as long as yours though! We must talk about La Gomera and the whistling shepherds!!!

  2. Good write-up. I think I overtook you two (and the dog of course) going up the hill to the road crossing near the Cinammon Lodge restaurant soon after the Lepton sports pitches. I was on the 17 miler but playing catch-up having done an extra mile or so along the wrong towpath at the beginning when 'in the lead' so ended up doing 19.25 miles !!

  3. Mike, I love the Canary Islands but haven't been to La Gomera yet, heard it's great for running. We are visiting La Palma soon and I'm really excited to explore new trails and enjoy the perfect Canary weather!

    Anon, Glad you got out on New Year's Day, and I feel for you going wrong. Been there, done that...the 10 extra miles in last year's Round Rotherham comes to mind! But it was a nice day and nice trails to get lost on!