Daily Archives: 15th December 2013

Roseberry Topping Trail Half Marathon, Sunday, December 15, 2013

Danny Lim

The compulsory kit check required a minimum of 500ml of water to be carried. There were orthodox ways in which other participants fulfilled this requirement. One man carried a pint of milk, dangling it from his pinkie, claiming he would carry it for 13 miles, sure! Another had a tea-cup tied to his bum bag: I dunno, maybe he was going to stop for tea halfway?

We started off from Guisborough and the first 15 minutes had plenty of climbing. I was stuck behind a long snake of lycra-clad bottoms. Fortunately, the view improved when we reached Highcliff Nab; stunning views of Teeside and the surrounding country below.

En route, I gave a wave to Melanie and Dave who were doing the full marathon. Later I heard that Dave had managed to get himself stuck in the loo. Was that his excuse for missing a “Pee B”? More details I’m sure from his report.

Nice day for a run.

The next highlight was the climb up Roseberry Topping. I managed to pass several runners including Mr Tea-cup by power-walking. At the top, I was greeted by non other than Flip, braving the wind and marshalling. I paused at the top for a few photos. Mr Tea-cup passed me on the downhill. We exchanged positions everytime there was a change in elevation, even managing some banter as we passed each other. Eventually I left him as he stopped at a checkpoint.

Captain Cook Monument was next, followed by a run through the nearby woods then down into Lonsdale farm before ascending the moor again. I was getting tired at this point and pretty much on auto-pilot. Other runners were clearly flagging too giving me the chance to pick some off. I’m sure many of us started off way too fast at the beginning. The next I can remember was descending back into Guisborough through the woods. As always an exhilarating descent made more precarious by the slippery mud, ankle-twisting pot-holes and fallen trees. I labored back into the hall, my legs starting to cramping up. It was my hardest half-marathon since my first GNR (which I did with very little training). But its a breath of fresh air from road races and I’ll definitely be signing up for more of the Hardmoors series which next year will include 10K’s, halfs and full marathons.

I managed to take several photos during the race. I’ll put them all up online on my blog.

Hardmoors Roseberry Trail Marathon, Sunday, December 15, 2013

29 miles

Dave Robson

This race was listed as a marathon – it turned out to be about 29m, you certainly get value for money at a Hardmoors marathon, all of them have been over the marathon distance.

The race started and ended at Guisborough in North Yorkshire. Anna was helping out at registration and as there was also a half marathon and 10k, it was busy. There was a slight delay in the start of the marathon, we set off at 8.15. An early start, but the plan was to make maximum use of daylight (cut off was 10 hours). The half marathon and the 10k were being set off a little later.

The day was dry and there was a bit of sun, but there was a strong wind. Soon after the start we were off road and climbing steeply through Guisborough Woods to reach the top of the first hill, High Cliff Nab which has wonderful views over Guisborough. On the way up we were overtaken by Jerry who was doing the half marathon and later Danny went by. We didn’t see Mark and Anita Dunseith who were doing the 10k. Aaron was also doing the marathon but he was along way ahead of us and finished with a good time.

Welcome bit of downhill running, no doubt ... and yes, she's still laughing about it.

From High Cliff Nab it was across the moors to Roseberry Topping. Rather than go up the direct route to the summit, we went round to the far side and up the steep route. It certainly was steep. Flip was marshalling at the top and I am not sure how he survived in that wind. Melanie was being blown all over the place in the short time we were up there.

Then it was down a different way, before making our way back to the Cleveland Way and up little Roseberry, across the moor and down to Gribdale. Up again to Captain Cooks monument, passing two Christmas trees which were decorated with various Christmas decorations. Then off in the direction of Kildale, but then we turned north before we got to Kildale and went down into Gribdale again and then up to the moors again and back towards Guisborough Woods. When we got there we were at 12m and it felt like we had done much more than that. The paths over the moors were muddy in places and it had been mainly uphill since Gribdale.

We then turned away from the woods (and the finish) and then headed back across the moors (downhill but into the strong wind). Finally reached Commondale at 16m and we went into the public toilets. I shut the door on my toilet and as it shut I thought that is a tight fit, the door was a bit big for the frame. When I attempted to get out I unlocked it without any problem but I couldn’t get it open. I couldn’t get any leverage and I could see I wasn’t going to get out quickly. Reluctantly I called Melanie. I say reluctantly because I knew that this was going to cause her much amusement for many years to come. [Just making sure the casual reader doesn’t miss this bit. Ed] Now Melanie is slight and she is not really designed to throw her weight against a stuck toilet door. However she did manage to get it open and we were off again, although it was a while before Melanie stopped laughing …

We headed down a valley passing through the edge of Castleton before climbing back onto the moors again. Then it was a slog back to Guisborough Woods and down to the finish. 6hr 40min, two hours longer than last week’s 16 laps round Newcastle Racecourse, but much more enjoyable.

Overall a very enjoyable experience which I am sure is going to be well remembered by Melanie.