Whilst I was there I was able to take the opportunity to revisit one of my favourite running spots once more: Winter Hill.
Whilst sitting down with them recovering after the Pendine race, I received a thorough ribbing from the ‘Leek-y Ladies’ over my plans for running the Peak Skyrace. They took great pleasure in pointing out how in being a soft southerner I live in the relatively ‘flat’ land of Hampshire, whereas they live next to the ‘mountains’ and are able to get out and run on them every day and know every inch like the back of their hands before the start of the race… Thanks ladies, you inspire great confidence!
As much as a light-hearted jest it may have been, the lack of hardcore hill training has been playing on my mind, so at least getting here afforded me the chance to get some proper practice in… Another thing that has been grating me was my abject performance at the Rivington Trail Marathon back in October (yes, the one with the ‘dogging’ incident that appeared in Outdoor Fitness magazine) through being under the weather with the flu… But now I was here I was determined to get out and give a good account of myself on the slopes of the hill.
Looking at the GPS data from my previous visits to Rivington Pike and what is available for the Peak Skyrace, to run from Rivington Park up the Pike, across the moor to Winter Hill, down the other side and then back is 10 miles and a total ascent & descent of 1,800ft - which is about 1/3 of the Skyrunner in distance and ascent/ descent.
|The elevation data of the route along its distance.|
|The route out and back.|
|Looking down on Bolton and the Macron Stadium.|
|Looking across to the top of Winter Hill from Rivington Pike.|
|Heading down the other side of the hill.|
Having survived the run (albeit with stiffness in my troublesome right calf) and achieving with the training what I was hoping to, I certainly feel more confident about the pending Skyrunner… I’ve just got to make sure that between now and then that I find more time to go out and do just pure hill-work.