As most of you will know I spent much of yesterday running a hilly 43.8 miles (70.5 km) in the Yorkshire Dales with Hugh Pearson crewing for me for the first time.
It went exceptionally well and I'm very pleased at how things worked out. I think Hugh learned a lot about how this crewing thing works but he was also very happy about how it all went. He did a fair bit of running himself too :)
The new nutrition strategy worked wonders too - giving me plenty of energy for running up a few big hills such as the one south of Bewerley which took me past Yorke's Folly [OS 1:25000 map - Explorer26 - ref 157643 to 156634].
Overall the route took us from the car park just north of Timble to Fewston, Wydra then via Penny Pot Lane to Hampsthwaite where Hugh managed to squeeze a 7' 6" wide vehicle (2.29m) across a bridge which was just 6' 6" in width (1.98m). Don't know how he did that :)
From there we went via Clint, Shaw Mills and Bishop Thornton to Markington where we turned north towards Fountains Abbey. Here Hugh performed his second miracle of the day by getting his heavy motor home across a bridge with a weight restriction of 3 tonnes and then around a few sharp twists and turns in the road while avoiding two cars and a lorry coming in the opposite direction.
From there we continued north through Winksley to Laverton and shortly after this we encountered another problem - the road over the moors towards Pateley Bridge was closed to traffic because of re-surfacing works. I knew I could manage for well over an hour without the need for more food and drink but at this point I half expected Hugh's inexperience to show ... there was none of that, and with no more than a 30 second conversation we decided I should continue and he should just take the suggested detour and meet me further along our planned route.
From there it was down to Blazefield and Bewerley followed by the large hill mentioned earlier. Then south to Thruscross Reservoir and back to Otley via Blubberhouses (and a couple more large hills).
So, a very good 7 hours out on the roads in which we both learned a lot which will be good for the ULTRArace 100 which is now less than eight weeks away. Really looking forward to that.
And so to today ... woke at 4.00am this morning as Keir was going on a school trip to Auschwitz - for the day !!! He had to be at the airport for 5.00am and we're glad it's only 3 miles away (5 km). His flight home arrives at 10.30pm so today will be a long one with not much sleep :(
Already feeling a bit sleepy ...