Is now available for download here. Margaret’s last edition as editor and every bit as good as every edition she has produced. 9 excellent years! A fantastic range of articles beautifully put together. Who will be next?
Archives for 2018
Well done Mike for pulling together a last minute Equinox run. With little notice a quorum was achieved and a small band got the bus out to Carlops for a quick one in the Alan Ramsay. The forecast wasn’t great but in the event, apart from a rather brisk and chilly wind, it was spectacularly good with clear air and boundless views. In the great tradition of drink fuelled Carnethy runs we quaffed ales in the bars, and for novelty value on the hill Mike’s M&S G&Tea with gold flakes. A strange drink. My home made blackberry liqueur, which was actually pretty good but in too short supply, and Jeff’s remarkable meadowsweet infused whisky. Karin’s ricotta and spinach pies were excellent and we had cakey substances in abundance. Sparky had a stick. Oh well, if you are a dog, you don’t really know what you are missing. And he enjoyed it as much as we did ours. Around 13 miles, and with a small group quite fast, finishing in daylight at the Steading for food.
Strange evening on Arthur’s Seat with streams of runners going in all directions. Overtaken by a mass group on our way to our chosen spot only to find they had already based themselves there and were busy Intervalling. We moved on over the hill and stopped to think. A herd of HBTs then poured down the slope but we held our ground and they went off to do something taxing elsewhere. We got down to business in the increasing gloom. It’s head torches from now on. Another excellent session, led by Eóin. (As nearly the slowest, the rep traces are far shorter than everyone else’s!)
Interval training is on Tuesdays meeting at the Steading, and Thursdays meeting at the Octagon Hut, 7pm. See the training page for full details.
The Scottish Hill Running championships are now complete after Beinn Resipol at the weekend. We achieved a full team for every category at every championship race! Looking at the results we are the only club to manage this. Thank you and congratulations to everyone who raced this season. It has been great to always see so many smiling faces in red and yellow vests at different races and it’s an incredible feeling to be part of this team. We are proud to be your captains!
We also won lots of prizes! We won three out of the four team categories: Senior Women, WV40 and Senior Men. The Senior Men’s was incredibly close as we finished with the same number of points as Shettleston (and only one more than Westies!) We won on countback as we beat Shettleston more times than they beat us.
Stewart Whitlie won the MV50 category in a tight battle with Manny Gordon from Westies and Liam Braby won the MU23.
Well done to everyone who completed the championships, you have certainly earned your championship mugs! That was 15 people this year:
Thanks to Andy Spenecely for sending in the results!
Rachel & John
There were lots of Carnethys in the Glencoe to Ben Nevis area over the weekend racing in the Salomon Skyline series of 4 races which include:
Mamores VK™ on Thursday
– 5km / 1,000m
Ben Nevis Ultra™on Friday
Planned as – 52km / 4,000m (bad weather reduce this to 49km / 2060m ascent)
Ring of Steall Skyrace™ on Saturday
– 28km / 2,750m
Glen Coe Skyline® on Sunday
Planned as – 52km / 4,750m (bad weather reduced this to 33km / 3000m ascent retaining the ascent of Curved Ridge)
There is a great website with all the info, maps, pictures and videos and results here: http://www.skylinescotland.com/ or look on Facebook/Strava. Look out for a cracking drone sequence of Jasmin chasing Konrad across the hills and in another you might see me giving Jilian Kornet a run for her money. I am in the
white red top.
What can you say about this event: Very European, with bagpipes and mud. I suspect Kinlochleven will take a while to recover and certainly the trails used will need some time. My quads should recover by Weds I hope.
Folk came from all over the World since it was the final of the Skyrunner World Series. If you knew who-was-who in the elite field, well the great and the good (freaks, as I call them), were there. Your low key Scottish hill race – it was not. More lycra, hydration vests, headbands and walking poles than you could shake a Carnethy buff at.
As it turned out, both the Ultra Route competitors and the Glencoe Skyline racers were a bit short changed by the ‘bad’ weather with both routes being shortened, making the Ring of Steall and the Vertical KM sticking to the planned traces on the map. You don’t need a map mind you, since there where thousands of little red flags and arrows to show the way. That didn’t stop some people taking wee detours though.
I did the RoS which is a great route comprising airy ridges, bog, technical running on slippery rock and two 1000m ascents and descents with a river crossing and few other smaller climbs across the Mamores range. Quite tough, misty and drizzly on the tops, and requiring a good food plan to avoid bonking later in the race. Some folk complained about the quagmires, I thought it was fine… just run around it.
The winning times in all the races are bonkers to me, but then I don’t run 100m in <10s or a marathon in less than 2:03!
Rémi Bonnet ascended a KM in 39:23
Jonathan Albon led for most of the ULTRA race and finished in 3:48:02.
My great rival Kilian Jornet just pipped me this time on the RoS in a ridiculous time of 03:04:34.
Boyed by his easy day on Saturday he went to trot around the Skyline route (his recovery run) in an equally ridiculously impressive 03:37:17.
As I say…freak, or should I really say – inspiring freak.
I will have missed Carnethy racers whose names I forget, but here are those I spotted in the results. If I missed you, email email@example.com and add your time and a wee report:
Vertical KM (343 finished, 4 didn’t)
Carnethy was represented at the Vertical Kilometer race, the opening race of the long weekend, by Murdo McEwan and Mark Thomasson in dire weather conditions. Their respective times of 73:11 and 78:40 seem somewhat pedestrian when compared to the 23 year old Swiss winner, Remi Bonnet’s, record breaking 39:23 (over 2 minutes ahead of 2nd placed Norwegian Thorbjorn Ludvigsen). But, hopefully, within their age bands their times are rather more respectable!
Murdo McEwan – full report in next Journal
|ULTRA (347 finishers, 22 didn’t)|
|RoS (664 finishers, 48 didn’t)|
|Skyline (198 finish, 5 didn’t)|
Have a go next year. There is a race for you and you have time to save up for it.
The final race in the Scottish Champs series drew the expected throng to this remote corner of Scotland. Not geographically perhaps but logistically.
This race suits a certain type of hill runner who can descend happily on slippery morasses of semi liquid peat and mud, with rocky bits. There were quite a few in this category. Not including me.
Ben Resipol is an attractive hill of 845 metres. A mini mountain with a big feel and an impressively craggy top that would be great to revisit. The start fairly soon leads into a muddy and very narrow path. This opens out to a muddy and very wide path. This theme continues up and down. As we toiled up, the ultimate winner (in a new record time) James Espie was flying down, followed shortly after by ladies winner Jill Stephen. It was a while before I spotted a Carnethy on the descent – Stewart Whitlie. However, Michael Reid was first Carnethy home, just in front of Alex McVey, with Michael taking 1st V40. Our other prize-winner, Angela Mudge, was also 1st V40 (and second woman). The day started sunny and cold, and very slowly deteriorated but we were lucky, and apart from the cloud descending it stayed dry, overhead anyway.
The afters were top notch, with a great spread of sandwiches, soup and cake. One of the best post race feeds I’d say. And a well organised race, fully marked and marshalled.
Andy Spenceley’s photos:
The second edition of the 170km Ultra Tour Monte Rosa took place on 6th to 8th September. Organised by five times UTMB winner, and record holder for the Everest Base Camp to Kathmandu mail run, Lizzy Hawker, the route mainly follows the trekking route around the Monte Rosa massif going around twenty nine 4000m+ peaks.
Lizzy Hawker trained on the route for her UTMB races, and says “this is the race I would really like to run”, and so decided to organise it herself. Described as; “a serious challenge – brutal, beautiful and brilliant”, there is a time limit of 60 hours for completion.
The race start and finish is in the pretty alpine village of Grächen, in Valais, Switzerland. I had travelled out a few days before the race to try and acclimatise, and rest up for the 12,000m+ of ascent/descent that was to come. The trails are mainly above 2,000m with several high points above 3,000m.
The race started at 4am to ensure all runners were across the glaciated Theodul Pass before nightfall. The first 37km to Zermatt followed the Europaweg path, crossing the world’s longest pedestrian suspension bridge at 494 m in length. I had laminated a 40 hour schedule, and was half an hour up when I met Nicola in the warm sunshine at Zermatt. The climb out of Zermatt was indeed brutal, but the views of the Matterhorn spectacular. I met Nicola again at the Gandegghütte (2,929m) – she’d taken the quicker option of the cable cars. The route continued to climb, crossing the Theodul Glacier until I reached the high pass (3,300m) as the weather closed in. With hail, sleet and freezing rain, I was thankful for the extra layers from the obligatory safety kit, and made a quick descent into Italy.
There were fourteen checkpoints en route all (wo)/manned by fantastic volunteers, and had a never ending variety of refreshments on offer. As the weather deteriorated, and the trail became slippery the continental runners decided to sit out the worst of it at the refuges and I gained a few places. With nightfall, the weather improved and the cloudless skies revealed the stars above the shadows of the imposing mountains.
After 100km (19 hours) I reached checkpoint 9 at the Italian village of Alagna (1,193m), and took my first 15 minute break. Leaving the checkpoint, the next section had 1,936m of climbing, followed by a 1,652m descent. I had felt quite good up to this point, but the following six hours almost destroyed me. By the time I reached the checkpoint at Macugnaga (125km), my feet were suffering from trenchfoot, and my energy levels depleted. The volunteers here were great, forcing me to eat a big bowl of soup, and helping me dress the soles of my feet. With the morning sun came renewed energy, and the 1,518m climb to the impressive Monte Moro Pass back into Switzerland passed quickly. I had intended not to stop here but the checkpoint food was so good, I gorged myself for 5 minutes, later I would be thankful for the calories. The climb to the golden Virgin Mary statue, and 2km descent was the most technical part of the route, equipped with ropes and steps cut into the rocks. Once in the valley the running improved, and I was soon at the village of Sass Fee (149km) where Nicola had travelled to meet me. I was feeling near to breaking point here, but Nicola ensured I was fed and rehydrated and walked with me to the edge of the village, with just one more 1,000m climb and 20km to go I was confident I could get to the finish. However I hadn’t reckoned on what was to come: 15km of a never ending roller coaster of narrow paths, with alarmingly steep drops. I was relieved to finally reach the top of the Hannigalp gondola station, the final checkpoint, and then 3km of easy running downhill to finish at Grächen after 38.5 hours, and 10th runner back.
Lizzy Hawker greeted every finisher, and presented us with silk scarves from Nepal, together with our finisher’s medal and unique Swiss Army knife. After a couple of beers I crashed out to a fitful night’s sleep before waking to see the remainder of the finishers. In the evening the village hosted a post-race meal and prize presentation.
This really is a brutal, beautiful and brilliant race. Lizzy Hawker’s organisation and attention to detail to make this race possible is incredible, and the 150+ volunteers who make it possible brilliant.
In addition to the 170km ultra, there is a 4 day stage race around the same route, plus a 100km option from Gressoney back to Grächen. With only 400 runners the event is low key, the trails empty and the scenery magnificent.
Race info: https://www.ultratourmonterosa.com/170km-ultra-tour-info/
Grächen info: https://www.graechen.ch/en/About-us