Monday, 20 February 2012


Up the ghyll
   I've been struggling this week. Snow that shrouded our hills last weekend quickly disappeared during a rapid thaw, but then it froze again and a biting NNE wind made running a chilly affair in the resultant wind-chill factor. For the past couple of weeks I've been running with a cold, hoping I'd sweat it out of my system. It hasn't quite worked and the freezing cold air streaming into my lungs as I ran an otherwise very pleasant 25 miles this week has left me with a barking cough. I've been advised by my wonderful partner to go to bed with a hot water bottle clutched to my chest - but I'm not very good at things like that! Anyway, it's forecast to get warmer in the next few days, up to 17ºC, so hopefully my chest will respond positively to that.
Flooded path by the river
    Melt-water pouring off the hills during the short thaw had raised the height of the river, flooding the path till water was lapping round my ankles on a run back from Howgill. But the sun was shining, birds were singing and all the high tops stood in bold relief in the clear air. The 8 mile route was the farthest I've run since the beginning of January and I'm pleased to say I ran it a little quicker - if only by a minute. It's a step in the right direction. By March 10th I've got to raise my game to 12 miles to take part in the Troller's Trot - an annual 25 mile event through some of Yorkshire's most beautiful countryside - though I'll only be running half of it.
Stile at Cupola Corner
    After soaking feet by the River Wharfe we decided to keep high on Sunday's run until the flood water had receded.  After morning service at St Peter's my wonderful partner ran with me for a couple of miles up the ghyll before going our separate ways, each of us on our own preferred route. I climbed the stile at Cupola Corner and ran north as far as the dam on the edge of Grassington Moor. At 1,300ft it offers spectaculer views across Wharfedale which I never tire of gazing at from this remote spot where I rarely meet another soul. Again, there was a bitterly cold wind but in sheltered hollows, or on leeward sides of rocky outcrops, sheep dozed in the sun's meagre warmth. There are places on earth we hold sacred, where God is in His heaven and all's well with the world. This is one of mine.
    I told myself I'll take things easy this coming week and cut out the running until remnants of my cold and irritating cough have totally subsided. But have I got enough will-power? Well, if it's any help, it's raining.


  1. I also developed a hacking cough in the very cold air last week. Thank goodness it's milder now. Take care of yourself! It will pay off in the long run (excuse the pun)!

  2. Looks wet!

    More great photos too, thanks. :)

  3. I hart it when that happens, the small things get in the way of running, like being sick!!! So beat it so you can get out there...

  4. I didn't think you'd be much of a hot water bottle man alright!

  5. I ought to try the hot water bottle. If i had one. :)

    Even flooded and very cold, your running territory looks pleasing.
    Thanks for the link on the ladies jacket! If I can find 17 US plus shipping I will get it. That's a steal!

    1. I made a heat pad by putting dry beans in a sock. I heat it in the microwave. It works well! But it smells like beans. Good for the sinuses/chest cold.

  6. Oh for a ghyll to run up.
    It has taken me the best part of 5½ weeks to get over the cold I had at Christmas.
    That is virus not just cold.
    Even down here we had -15 at night.

    Then just rain.

    Thankfully the sun came out this weekend!

  7. You have the most beautiful area to run in!!
    Be careful with that cough :)
    My Running Shortz