Tuesday 15 May 2018

Clough Head Fell Race 2018

On bank holiday Sunday my son was hiking up the Old Man in Coniston with school so I set off on my own to Threlkeld to film the Clough Head fell race. It was a beautiful day as I approached the fell which stands at 726 m (2,382 ft):

As it was an English Championships race there were plenty of banners at the start:

It was helpful to find some at gates as well as the paths up to the fell are not way marked (as the land is open access):

I found it tough going in the heat with all my camera equipment so stopped frequently to appreciate views such as this one of Blencathra:

I wasn't on the official ascent route so was basically just following tracks that led in the right direction! I have now realised that on hills like this you really do need a proper map... Eventually I encountered some of the race flags on Threlkeld Knotts:

Then it was the scariest part of the ascent crossing Red Screes with  path like this:

It was a relief to reach the top of this and set up a camera point to film the ladies as the came up the scree:

We could just see the runners as they reached the first checkpoint on the highest point of Threlkeld Knotts, some of them obviously took a wrong turn as they were coming back on themselves to reach it!

It was so steep as they passed me that not many were able to actually be running:

When the last lady had passed me I relocated towards the summit for a different view for the men's race. It was still a fair climb to get there:

Again it was a great excuse to pause and take in the views on a stunning day:

Eventually the trig point and summit came into site:

At the summit I set up to record the men as they passed the checkpoint:

and ran off to tackle the steep descent:

Here is the men's race and they do show what tough climb they had had:

Then I walked back down and accidentally took a super long way which gave me lots more views:

It turned out that by going the wrong way the only company I had were the sheep:

I had come down along side the stunning St John in the Vale:

As I was so far over I came down through the Threlkeld Mining Museum which has a working steam train:

It was such a relief to get back to my car even though I had missed all the prize giving!

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