Monday 14 August 2017

Play misty for me......

Below was the sight that greeted me as I stepped out the door for the first of my dawn runs last week.  The sign points downhill, towards Huddersfield, but I ignored it and, as usual, went uphill.
To the Castle, of course.
Stepping out to greet the sun - or was it greeting me?
 (Click to enlarge pictures)
Fields were awash with dew and an eerie mist was spreading through the valleys as I climbed higher.  Rabbits ran ahead of me, indicating the absence of dog walkers.  I'd the hill to myself, which is just how I like it...
Then the mist came
It was Thursday and my first of only three runs last week.  I'd set off to do 4 miles but got a bit carried away with the beauty of my surroundings.  I finished up running 5 miles and felt fresh enough to have run farther.
Misty valleys
Mileage was down on last week, but still managed a very enjoyable 15 miles with a little over 1,300ft of ascent to spice it up a bit.
Clear and bright on Friday
Friday's run was kept to a strict 4 miles.  Unlike the previous morning's run there wasn't a shred of mist to be seen.  Perfect for photography if only I'd had time to take more.
Poetry in motion
Descending past the wood on my way home three young ladies were setting off up the hill, running in line, perfectly synchronised.
Ah, no-one will notice me scrumping at 6 in the morning!
Passing someone's  garden I noticed that apples were turning russet and would soon be ready for scrumping.
Uphill but enjoyable in the clear air on Sunday
Sunday dawned clear and fresh with not a cloud in the sky.  Instead of running directly uphill I turned left, dropping down into Mollicar Wood, then up through Roydhouse and a steep field towards Farnley Tyas.
Castle Hill from Farnley Hey
Turning right towards a distant Castle Hill presented me with a couple of problems.  The first was a virtual swamp of evil smelling slurry flooding across the public footpath. It appeared to flow from a hole in the ground.
There's a footpath somewhere under those clods
The second was a long, roughly ploughed field with ankle twisting clods that slowed me down a bit.
Arrival on Castle Hill...
As ever, I had to finish over Castle Hill and again I had the place to myself.  The views were superb and I was reluctant to descend.
...and a view from the top, to the heathery heights of West Nab,
purple in the morning light
 It was one of those days I felt I could run forever.  I love these wild runs, often with some wild and wonderful music (click to play) rushing around in my mind, helping my pace, drawing me on, transporting me, obliterating discomfort.  Except my tummy was crying out for porridge, and running across dusty, ploughed fields had proved thirsty work!  I contented myself with 6 memorable miles.
But thinking about that run while relaxing in the garden afterwards, it brought back memories of a poem I wrote,  many years ago:

There are days
On paths that  zig-zag
High into the hills
We pass beyond the pain,
Catch that tingling in the scalp
That tells us soon
We'll treadmill out of time,
Out of self.

To rufflings of raven's wings
We'll rise above the stones,
Sail in the eye of the wind
To worlds beyond the womb.
In that transmigratory state
That's neither flesh nor blood
Male or female, warm or cold,
We'll run, like disembodied joys,
The gauntlet of eternity.

Only 15 miles in total but a thoroughly enjoyable week.  Deserves another glass of wine methinks.  Or maybe even a wee dram....


  1. Think you are getting better weather than us in the SW! Looked a great run, no wonder you felt you could run for ever!!!!

    1. Yeah, from stepping out the door I was really 'in the zone' on Sunday Ian, such a beautiful day. They aren't all like that....

  2. Looking at your photographs I can fully understand and appreciate why you love early morning runs, especially when the weather is so good ...
    I hope you get many more in before Autumn starts drawing in.

    All the best Jan

    1. There are other reasons I run in the early mornings Jan, when no-one is about, but I wont go into that! But it is rather beautiful......