Dawn - Sometimes An Ultrarunner

Dawn - Sometimes An Ultrarunner

March 11, 2012

Wuthering Hike, 32 Miles, 10 Mar 2012

a.k.a. Howarth Hobble, with 4400 feet of elevation change, this Hike is not a race to take lightly. 

Photos courtesy of Runfurther
This is one of the few events that I have done before, so I had last year's time of 7:12 to aim to beat.  How hard could it be, that was only 4.5 miles an hour, well under the 5 mph average I kept up for 50 miles on the Round Rotherham?

The start of the race route was a blank spot in my mind...guess I had repressed those 4 miles of mostly uphill singletrack, battling against the wind and mist!   There was also a big clog-up at a couple of stiles...I had let too much of the field get ahead of me.  Oops. 

Low visibility in the first half of the race meant following the crowd around without having much idea where I was....too lazy to get the map out.   That came back to bite me later on, as a guy "who said he knew the route" went wrong in a key moment on the descent from Stoodley Pike.  Plenty of people followed us too, unfortunately, and I finally dug my map out. We had about a mile of forest bashing on minor trails to get back down to the proper road.   I carried map in hand the rest of the race...but the damage had been done.
Singletrack a few miles from the start

The day got really nice about after the first few hours, sunshine and warmer temps meant that the wind didn't bite as much as usual.  I was making good time though the halfway point, but after getting lost and losing 15 minutes or so, beating my previous time was getting harder to do.    The hills just kept getting longer and harder, too...nothing about the course is easy.   Three big climbs in the last 10 miles was a hard pill to swallow...luckily I had jelly donuts at the checkpoints to fuel me...or perhaps slow me down?

Still running at the finish although I looked like a gimpy pensioner by then. I finished in 7:03 so perhaps an improvement of 20 minutes or more on last year's time (if I hadn't gotten lost).   I won't even blame the previous night's bike race as possibly slowing me down :)

Had a nice chat with Mike before the race, and Nick afterward.  The steaming veggie stew picked me up enough for the drive home and inevitable crash on the sofa!

Results for 2012 Wuthering Hike are HERE

And if you "Like" the Runfurther Facebook page then there are tons of photos.


  1. The big diversions are usually my domain! ... see, I told you that you were better than a 7. hour + competitor! Why put so many extra miles in ;-)

    Well done and good to say Hi

    1. Mike, I've been lucky the last year with no huge navigation mistakes...once again I've realized I shouldn't follow other clueless people and have my map in my hand, not in my pack! Well done to you as well, heard you beat Nick in!

  2. Dawn, You'll have to forgive my ignorance. You know when you see a face and think 'I know who that is'. Yes that was me in the School before the start. If you see me again just say hello. I am stupid.
    I know what you mean about the navigation. It's taken me 4 goes to get it right. Well done and good to see your keeping busy

  3. Simon,

    I know what you mean, it's hard to recall where I've seen someone before, and in the time my brain is furiously processing the guesswork, the moment has passed. Catch you at the next one!

    I'm usually pretty good with nav on events I've done before, but I barely remmbered the trail from last year...perhaps I repressed it in order to forget how steep the hills were!