Author Topic: [Trip report] - Heart Foundation High Peak Trail  (Read 1585 times)

Dazza

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The first entry at least.

Well as you can see it's 5am (no I didn't realise the day had two 5s in it either) and I really should be in bed but here I am slurping down my first cup of tea and sorting breakfast.

In about an hour we'll be heading off to Cromford for the the BHF walk.

The weather forecast is all over the place (makes a change) but probably wrong (again makes a change) as here in Nottingham I should be looking out over a major snow fall which is missing in action. Look like we haven't even had a frost never mind snow.

So that makes me hopeful the snow, sleet and rain forecast for the walk itself is wrong. The wind I'm sure is correct as thats one aspect of the forecast that's not changed - 40 mph from the north west, the route is mainly heading northwest so I guess that's going to be in our faces all the way.

I may have mentioned this is a sponsored walk and that you can win a prize? I didn't? Well here you are then.

http://www.justgiving.com/darrenclarke3

Apparently there over 1600 mad fools.. erm wonderful people doing the walk today. So whilst your tucked up nice and warm spare a thought for us idi... erm lovely people walking for charity. If you can throw a quid or two our way even better.

I'm logged as walker number 5. So if you're out there today as well - Hello!!

Right off to make breakfast.

Update: It's just started snowing! Well at least the puppy is excited.
Dazza
« Last Edit: 23:27:26, 02/10/09 by Dazza »
Dazza
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These boots were made for walking so that's just what I'll do. After I've re-proofed them of course...

Dazza

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Re: [Trip report] - Heart Foundation High Peak Trail
« Reply #1 on: 18:08:29, 23/11/08 »
Completed the walk which wasn't without drama. I now have a shiny 2008 badge to live next to the 2007 badge on my Ruck sack.

Dinner is on, I've had a shower and am just starting my first, and well deserved, beer - a bottle of Coniston Bluebird I've been saving.

This walk answered one big question as well. We worked it out that we'd probably spent 5-600 each on the walking gear we'd be wearing. The question is ofcourse - Was it money well spent?

Will fill the report out later (no pictures, sorry) as I've got to answer a complaint from my left thigh muscle, a stern warning from my left knee and a letter from my right knees solicitor concerning 17 miles or something  ;)
Dazza
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These boots were made for walking so that's just what I'll do. After I've re-proofed them of course...

mike knipe

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Re: [Trip report] - Heart Foundation High Peak Trail
« Reply #2 on: 19:09:10, 23/11/08 »
Well done and congrates, Dazza.  You'll be able to use all that gear yet again on the 2009 event....   drink wisely and often.... O0 ;D
Some kind of happiness is measured out in miles

See the blog!  www.northernpies.blogspot.com

Dazza

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Re: [Trip report] - Heart Foundation High Peak Trail
« Reply #3 on: 18:52:44, 24/11/08 »
Cheers Mike. On the beer front I'm not sure I drink wisely......

Anyways. The day in question.

As mentioned previously the weather wasn't playing ball, by the time we left for Cromford the snow was coming down, during the drive the weather changed from snow, to sleet to rain. By the time we parked up in the not yet muddy field the weather had settled down to a persistent, moderate rain.

So on all the wet weather gear went. As we'd now have to use rain covers for the rucksacks that meant leaving the walking poles at the car. Still they wouldn't be needed and I'd rather stay dry in these conditions. In fact this was the first outing for my Atomic DT waterproof over trousers and, if previous years were any guide, they'd be getting a work out!

Still we met up with our fellow walkers and had a chat whilst doing the now traditional wait for everyone who was queueing for the toilets. At around 08:25 we started off, following the canal path until one of the few climbs. Now this is the first bit and it's a bit of a monster as it's a 40degree slope upwards for about a mile to Black Rock.

You then get a short break followed by a similar but shorter ascent to Middleton Top. This is the first of the marshal points with refreshments and toilets. This is roughly 4 miles in. We took an extended break partly to use the facilities but also to rest my walking mates leg a bit. The past two weeks he's had a muscle injury that's made walking painful occasionally. The next proper stop was 6 miles onward past Minninglow. Committed and with it still raining, we set off again.

Then a miracle happened. The rain stopped and the sun came out. Totally unexpected this and very welcome. Even the wind eased somewhat. Of course this couldn't last and as we approached the food station at the 10 mile point it started sleeting. Thankfully this eased off and stopped whilst we actually ate. At this point we were having to stop fairly regularly to rest up. However my mate still wanted to go on.

The weather continued fairly calm, the wind was getting up, but very little rain. A blessed state for the High peak Trail in November. We'd made it to the next Marshall point, 2.5 miles from Parsley Hay. My mate was suffering somewhat now but didn't want to bail, especially as a big sit down and a warm at Parsley Hay was only 30-40 minutes away.

However to add insult to injury the wind and rain went up a notch. Finally the rain turned to bullets of ice. So sliding around and being pelted with ice we passed the final sign post saying Parsley Hay 1.5 miles. We'd been walking 40 minutes to get a mile. Increasingly the people passing us were limping and it looked like a death march for some, so we blended in quite well. My mates ankle screaming and my legs and knees chiming up nicely we staggered onto Parsley Hay. At this point the sun came out again.

It was just after 1400 and we'd been walking for 5.5hours including breaks. We'd also been slowing, from an average of 3 miles an hour to more like 1.5. Still the sun must have been an omen for my mate as at Parsley Hay, 1.8 miles from the end, he had to turn it in before risking major injury. At our current rate of progress it would have taken 60-90 minutes to finish. I can honestly say I'd spare myself 90 minutes of pain if I could. So whilst it was so close, he made the right decision. 

So it's now 1410, I've stayed in the walk, so I rashly say I'd see my mate at the end in 30 minutes. I started off determined to make the 2 miles in 30 minutes. I was overtaking people like a demon, some of them no doubt wondering where I got the energy from! Of course the thought of getting onto a warm bus and not missing my lift home from Cromford was pretty motivating.

At 1432 I walked across the finishing line and picked up my badge.



So there you have it, seventeen miles done. I have a rapidly recovering muscle strain and two very painful knees, but in a day or so I'll be fine. My mate is going to see a doctor in a few days if his ankle hasn't improved.

Now 17 miles isn't much compared to what some walk on the ere forum.  However the High Peak usually makes life difficult by having a wide variety of weather, and sadly you don't get to choose what you get. Possibly the main cause is that whilst the footpaths are excellent, they're very very hard (no soft grass, hard concrete type stuff all the way) so they tend to jar the old legs. They're also smooth and at this time of year iced up in places - not a good recipe. So it's not a massive distance but you certainly know you've done it.

In all, over 2000 people started the walk this year, a record number. At the moment I don't know how many of our group managed to finish, or what we've raised. The Just Giving website is open until Feb 09 apparently.

So did the walking gear do the job? It certainly did, I was warm, dry and quite happy leg pain aside. Definitely not money down the drain.

Next year? Well obviously my mate isn't overly enthusiastic at the moment, but a year is a long time in walking.....

« Last Edit: 18:56:37, 24/11/08 by Dazza »
Dazza
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These boots were made for walking so that's just what I'll do. After I've re-proofed them of course...

vertigo girl

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Re: [Trip report] - Heart Foundation High Peak Trail
« Reply #4 on: 19:42:55, 24/11/08 »
Well done. I think 17 miles in those conditions is no mean feat.

stevieboy378

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Re: [Trip report] - Heart Foundation High Peak Trail
« Reply #5 on: 20:01:19, 24/11/08 »
Well done ! - 17 miles of the High Peak is some feat - with me boredom (and sore feet from the hard surface) usually sets in after 10 miles or so, and I generally end up sidetracking into the dales . . .
"Weaseling out of things is important to learn. It's what separates us from the animals ! . . .
. . . .except the weasels." - Homer Simpson

Steve Wilcox

Dazza

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Re: [Trip report] - Heart Foundation High Peak Trail
« Reply #6 on: 18:17:15, 25/11/08 »
Well done ! - 17 miles of the High Peak is some feat - with me boredom (and sore feet from the hard surface) usually sets in after 10 miles or so, and I generally end up sidetracking into the dales . . .

Thanks all.

I think that's one of the difference with walks of this type. When you're walking normally you can please yourself and say 'stuff this' if you want when you get bored or fed up of the walking terrain.

Here the mind set is different you have to do the route you're given regardless. Temptations like Minning and Arbor Low have to be ignored!

I didn't see it but apparently some of the food tents blew away in the wind!
Dazza
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These boots were made for walking so that's just what I'll do. After I've re-proofed them of course...