Bit chilly today, so we sought relative shelter in the bowl of the Dry Dam. It made for an excellent roller-coastery tussock tig arena, and provided a good long uphill handicap route (see pic). We will be revisiting this excellent venue.
The slow group enjoyed a lovely snowy run around the Braid Hills. The snow eased off after a while and the view from the summit over to the white Pentland Hills was marvellous. We didn’t need our head torches (just on the night I’d remembered to bring mine). The gritters’ HQ was all lit up as we slipped along the metal fence on the wrong side of the burn, but I guess they were all out gritting the roads. Many thanks to Willie for leading a great run (and giving us his butterfly impersonation in the snow!).
||Speed of light snow
Tonight’s run was inspired by an upcoming reunion of SOL leaders and the light snow. So it was straight from KB to the top of Salisbury Crags (A), back along the mid line (C) before heading up to Whinnie Hill (H).
This was all good running on the soft snow with a little bit of sliding. Then it was on to the tourist trail: Holyrood, Calton Hill, National Gallery, The Castle, the Grassmarket and The Meadows taking in a few flights of steps on the way.
Kiwi’s are an understated lot, this race being a fine example as it’s a fairly brutal course, 100k and 4500 metres of climb don’t really count as easy. This is very much a local race for me as I moved down to Wanaka (IMHO the best location in New Zealand) last winter and I can see most of the course from my house.
This was a new race and also was the first race in the inaugural SkyRunning Oceania Series so it was great to be involved in the first one. We had a field of 31 starters which did include a few from Australia who came over specially for the race. Quite a few locals were there as this area is just full of mentally good runners (or is that just mental runners?) so it was good to see familiar faces. We started at 3am at the Albert Town Tavern (height 300m) and had a fairly gentle start over Mount Iron (548m) before dropping back down and running past the town centre an along the lake front until the Roy Peak car park and first checkpoint/drop bag. I’d started just into the back half of the field, taking it easy but no too easy as I was enjoying the cooler conditions.
Full results here.
If team 14 legs 2/3 runners (FV40) have any gps proof of handover please let Fife AC know, as the incoming leg 2 runners failed to clock in.
Carnethy results 2015 compared to last 2 years
Margaret and I (and Penicuik Harrier Sadie who had been “can you believe it” contemplating reading a book and taking it easy) had a lovely “just in time recce” before our leg 4. It was much icier first time round but great to have time to take in the views and get some photos. The route is up through the woods where leg 3 come down and then up onto the track for East Lomond to the top before straight down the steepest side and then great downhill trail into Falkland town.
Desperately in need of hot drink and food after very early breakfast (too early for THE soup) we refuelled after our recce and we headed out again to wait in the very chilly changeover spot. But we were far too early and the sun never reached the ground deep in the woods, you could feel the heat trail as leg 3 runners came in – could have done with good heat transfer system set up so I was shivering when started over an hour later. Sadie left, then Margaret then Brian removing his cosy Keith Burn’s jacket which I wished “I” had on!
Finally, heading up into the light, it was nice to see familiar folk coming down on leg 3, Willie and Bob and no surprise I got passed by Gordon at the river of ice! I wasn’t brave enough to bounce fast down the tussocky steep descent off East Lomond on the right of the woods but I was delighted that I went where I meant to go (as we had missed out the middle checkpoint on our recce). Had a battle with a dog to get over the fence at the checkpoint; every time I went he tried to go same place at the same time – thought there were only human runners on the Burdens!
I went as fast as my wee legs could take me, loved the route, loved my soup, loved catching up with local FAC friends and had great time… Thank you ladies – delighted our times now all in! Imagine my surprise when I ran into the finish WITH a complete correctly punched card to be told no times for last two legs! Eh… did I imagine seeing Ina and Carolyn’s pink faces? Alls well ends well but take home message seems to be, you can’t just hand your card over to the next runner but you also have to report to the marshals 🙂 This leg was definitely more fun than a very muddy field start for a leg 4 trail sometime in the dim and distant past.
Kirsty Loudon, FV40, Leg 4
There was a bit of nailbiting before the race as to whether we’d manage to field a V60 team. Fortunately in Carnethy we have the inspiration
from the likes of Bill Gauld , Keith Burns and Ian Nimmo for us young ones to keep going after bus-pass age.
Burns night? Another cracker! The Burnett family kindly offered to host this year, at their lovely home down near Bennetts Bar (all my directions and geography relate to pubs, I’m afraid). It was 6:45 when I arrived, and some were already in a local tavern drinking some dutch courage as I unloaded the last of the goodies from the car. By 7pm the house was still quiet, but outside the streets of Morningside were awash with Carnethies, trying to find Neil’s house with a pudding in one hand, a carry out under their arm, and trying to load google maps on their phone. Bill Gauld was the first to arrive – proper old school: on time and without the need for internet. Good man! 15 minutes later we were all inside, the house warming nicely, puddings aplenty, jackets hanging from every corner, cycles stashed in the garage, drinks being poured and a mild panic setting amongst the speakers for the evening. But first the food!
Arriving bang on time, Zea provided the main meal for the evening. Our MC, Gordon, took to the stage to introduce Willie, who performed the Addressing of the Haggis. I’ve never understood it myself, it sounds a little like Klingon to me, but kudos to the president for performing with flair and without the need for written notes! Britton then said the Selkirk Grace, again without notes (!), and we all sat down for dinner. Puddings were supplied by the great cooks of Carnethy: Cheesecakes, trifles, brownies, eton mess, pineapple upside down cake, chocolate cake… the list goes on, and it was all gobbled up. Special mention of Shane’s crème brulee, it’s rare that I need to ask the host if he has a blowtorch!
Subdued with food, the Carnethy crowd slumped into their seats for the entertainment for the evening. However, despite sending an email round looking for volunteers to toast the lassies, there was no response! It seems the Carnethy Men were struck with stage fright, unwilling or unable to rise to the occasion, so the task fell on poor Fiona to take matters into her own hands. No loss though, she toasted the lassies with good grace (insider knowledge perhaps?), and was even kind to those fellas who she replaced. Cat responded in kind, toasting the laddies, even though they clearly don’t deserve it, with fun and good humour. Jamie Thin gave a great Immortal Memory, specifically referring to the conditions of the time and the toil that Burns endured, reminding us all how easy we have it today.
Thankfully, we’re not short of talented people in Carnethy, and the music flowed from then on. Richard and Margaret led with flute and guitar, Mark James sang, as did Moira and also Gio. Willie took to the stage to accompany Moira for a song. Jane and Mike gave us some great tunes on the guitar and mandolin, and I believe Sinead Thin sang Caledonia. All impressive stuff! For a finale we played an original composition by Nick McDonald, called Carnethy Desire, with Jane on mandolin, Mike on the chanter and guitar, and Cat on the ukulele. Apologies if I have missed any acts! Unfortunately I missed many acts as I was in the kitchen sorting the dishes and drinking whisky, with little and great success respectively. Once the last song was sung, we all thanked the performers and pudding makers, and then we all drifted off into the night.
Some made it to Bennetts for a night cap… and less remember making it to Bennetts for a night cap. Oh dear.
Many thanks to the host, the MC, the gracer, the addresser, the pudding makers, the toaster, the replier, the memory man, the singers, the players, and to all the music makers. And a special thanks to the attendees! Cheers!
Up to a dozen Carnethies, and at least one HBT, attended a full two day course at the weekend organised by Al McGowan, and taught by Sandy McSporran of BASP – associated to Mountain Rescue. For some of us (Gio, Graham, Olly, Steve) it was a rerun that must be done every three years, but for us novices it was an eye-opener.
We were introduced to key response steps in emergency care for both medical and accident victims – but so hard to tell them apart. Essentials of how to keep that airway clear, cardiovascular resuscitation, medications, really helpful and informative. Lots of discussion about emergencies for runners.
Then, the ‘real life’ simulations. Jings. Fatalities including adminstration of insulin to a hypoglycaemic diabetic, anticoagulant aspirin to an aspirin allergy, and one of us (C) died three times because not one team was prepared to investigate a thoracic puncture in a female. A lesson to be learned. (The lesson is – apply something like a plastic bag over the wound, so that air cannot pass through)
Thanks Sandy, and Al, for a fantastic course. And KB Union for hosting. Take home lesson – how is it that we’d never done this training before? If anyone gets a chance to take the course in the future, it’s superb, leap at it.
Richard and Connie
Carnethy Hill Running Club is a company limited by guarantee incorporated in Scotland with registered number SC492072 and having its registered office at Munro Cottage, Loanstone, Penicuik EH26 8PH