Monday, July 23, 2012

Snowdon Mountain Race

Last Saturday I ran my first ever fell race when I took part in the International Snowdon Mountain Race. The route starts in Llanberis and follows the Llanberis path all the way to the summit at a height of 1085 metres above sea level, and a distance of about 10 miles. The weather was superb on the day with bright sunshine and a bit of a breeze near the top. Not knowing how my race would go, I started conservatively near the back of the pack of about 600 runners. We left Llanberis and headed up the steep tarmac road and onto the rocky path that leads to the summit. The support from the crowds was excellent, with plenty of vocal encouragement and even a couple ringing cow-bells. The views, when I had a chance to admire the scenery were stunning. I managed to push on past a few runners, but I was reduced to a fast walk during mile 4 up a scree slope. Not long after this the leaders came hurtling down the mountain at an unbelievable pace. I reached the summit  in exactly an hour and eagerly anticipated the run down. A few runners passed me running down the scree slope, but I managed to retake a few places on the rocky paths lower down. By the time I was running down the tarmac road again my quads were really hurting, and my legs felt like jelly on the level road back in the town. I still managed to wave at the large crowds of supporters as I entered the finishing funnel. I finished in 1 hour and 35 minutes in 150th place overall and 6th in the V50 category; I was well pleased. I celebrated that night with the ultimate in recovery drinks - a few pints of Greek Mythos beer; lovely!

Running into Llanberis at the end of the race. Many thanks to
my son Adam for the animation.

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