This 14.9 mile race followed a picturesque course beginning from “that” slanted field just outside of Mytholmroyd which is also the start of the infamous Coiners race. It first wound its way through some woods and bracken fringed tracks, before gradually climbing up and over Stoodley Pike down an easy descent and a short road section, before heading across the moors mainly on the paved sections. The monument at the top of Stoodley Pike dominates the local skyline, being visible from a good distance, which is useful for the navigationally challenged fell runner. And although the original structure was built to celebrate the victory at the Battle of Waterloo, no Wellingtons were required for this race, as the weather was fine and the bogs were relatively dry being only around 4 or 5 inches deep. Turning right at the herd of cows near Todmorden we completed a figure of 8 course by eventually heading back up Stoodley Pike from the steep side and then retracing the way back to the start/finish field.
At the time of going to press, the results were yet to be issued, but I definitely finished and so did Carl Murray, who in typically extreme style hadn’t experienced enough pain that weekend and so headed straight over to Anglesey for the Sandman Triathlon!
All in all this was a brilliant course for someone who’s already done a couple of fell races and wants to try something a little bit more challenging. It was clearly marked all the way around and did not have anything too technical or steep, so very doable – take a note for next year. And it must be said that the choice of 3 different soups at the end of the race was definitely a plus!
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