Every so often, after the clocks change and until there is light in the sky again, the Wednesday evening training run is changed for a night run – sometimes themed. Also starting at 7pm the runs are in different locations around Edinburgh, with a convivial meal afterwards in a convenient hostelry.
Older night runs archive (pre 2014)
Night run diary
|Halloween Night Run
||26 Oct 2016||Willie|
Currie in a Hurry
|23rd Nov||Bottom of Kirkgate, Currie||Riccarton Inn||Euan Boyd|
|Infamous International Xmas Pub Run||21st Dec||Nick MacDonald|
|Penicuik Night Run||18th Jan 2017||In front of The Clippers, Penicuik Town Centre||£12 buffet style in The Clippers||Willie|
|Not the C5 Run||8th Feb||Flotty Car Park, next to the visitor’s centre.||The Flotterstone Inn||Jim Hardie|
|West Linton||15th Mar||Meet at the bus stop next to the Gordon Arms Hotel at 7pm||Gordon Arms Hotel||Ross Christie|
|Vernal Equinox Run, Cairnpapple||Mon 20th March||Linlithgow Railway Station, 7pm||The Four Marys pub||Mike Lynch|
Next night run – 15th March
Previous night runs –
7 o’clock on Wednesday night saw some 26 runners shivering outside Clippers in Penicuik where we were destined to eat later, but at that time we were waiting for the off to do the Cuckoo Waltz. No, not to play Jonasson’s Swedish accordion tune but a designed Willie waltz (ooer) around the designed landscape of the Clerk’s Penicuik estate.
Penicuik means the hill of the cuckoo but in the early stages it was more hills of the suckoo as gripping mud sucked at our shoes. As the estate covers some 500 acres but the run was 5 miles only (food was awaiting at Clippers remember), we clipped along a somewhat concentrated but enjoyable route firstly following the south bank of the Esk, ascending steadily through the aforementioned delightfully splashy mud to the remains of Ravensneuk Castle. As is often the way with old buildings this 16th century castle was robbed out in the 18th century to provide stone for the Bastion Wall bolstering Penicuik House – amongst others.
Another bast*** wall meant clambering over a double barbed wire fence behind a dry stane dyke (excellent if assisted somersault Moira) before we cantered round to the Ramsay Monument, built in 1759 a year after the respected poet and wig maker’s death. (The Clerks were friends and patrons of the great man). One of the great pastoral poets Allan Ramsay is well remembered in Edinburgh with a statue at the corner of the Mound and Princes Street and a bust included as one of the carved heads of only 16 poets in embrasures on the Scott Monument. You can of course admire the magnificent and colourful Ramsey Gardens built around his town house as you look up from Princes Street towards Edinburgh Castle.
To our left the Hurley Cave (1740-1748) is now closed and the old bridge is gone so we didn’t venture any further south (although we’ve ventured close to it several times in earlier Eskapade Runs). A swift descent then took us down to the Eskfield Bridge constructed in 1796. This and the earlier (1763) walled garden and Garden House at Eskfield to the west of the bridge are also well remembered features of the long running (in many senses) Eskapade Runs. There’s a path up to Penicuik House from the bridge curling left of the bridge but we diverted downstream to the Curling Hut at the lower of the Black Pools by the engraved Standing Stone. Then it was down the riverbank until we reached the recently restored “Centurion or Roman Bridge” – not Roman of course but built in Roman style between 1737 and 1741.
Turning off by the bridge we followed the track up the hill to arrive at the “Chinese Gates”. Originally installed in 1758 these replicas match the originals beautifully. Ahead through the broad avenue of lime trees (wherein lie some curious grave markers worth checking out) lies Penicuik House, but we swing left to run along the top of the Bastion Wall to arrive at the rear of the house to visit the perhaps appropriately named (given the name of the night’s leader) “Wee Willie Fountain and Well” before skirting round the conserved remains (a roofless but still imposing shell) of the beautiful Penicuik House to climb and stand on the still magnificent pillared portico. Built between 1761 and 1769 to designs by Sir James Clerk and John Baxter the Elder to replace the earlier Newbiggin House, sadly (in May I think) of 1899 a serious fire broke out in the house and although most of the paintings and furnishings survived (even if only to find a new home in a some more humble dwellings throughout Penicuik) much of the fabric of the building including the roof was destroyed.
From 1900 to date the Clerk family who still own and manage the estate live in the converted stable block we could see dimly in the darkness to our left. Acknowledging the Clerk’s curtilage we avoided going any closer. So, down the main driveway back towards Penicuik before making the steep ascent up to the Knight’s Law Tower, another whimsy or folly of the Clerks built between 1748 and 1751. Then down through the trees watching out for treacherous tree roots disguised as shadows to regroup on the driveway before we skirted the Spear Gates and Lodge to head round and up to the radio mast looking over to the lights of Penicuik down below. Not only the lights of Penicuik but food and drink beckoned and so we cantered downhill to cross the stile and run the last couple of hundred metres to well deserved pub and grub, conversation and conviviality before (for me anyway) a bracing cycle back to Edinburgh. Thanks to all for the good company and craik and to Willie for leading and to Joel for setting it up.
||With Joel, the run organiser, away on business. I was drafted in to lead the run.
Joel had arranged the food at Clippers and after a reccie on Saturday there was nothing left to do but turn up.
So about 25 of us with an age spread of over 55 years gathered outside the restaurant at 7pm. Mark appeared from the doorway with a load of poppadoms to give us a taste of what was to come.
So off we went down the Peebles road to Pomathorn and headed up South Bank Wood and stopped to regroup at the site of the 2007 landslide. The Penicuik landslide, Midlothian, January 2007, (paper written by a past club member). then on to the Top of the Hill –
– where we looked over to Penicuik House and then we ran across to the Ramsay Memorial,
“The Ramsay Monument is set on top of the Cauldshoulders Ridge, marking the end of the vista from Penicuik House as you look down the south-east avenue. An ashlar stone obelisk, pierced by three oval apertures on an arched base, it was built in 1759 by Sir James Clerk, 3rd Baronet, in commemoration of the poet Allan Ramsay, a frequent visitor to Penicuik House”.
Richard and Bill carried on along the wood track and we regrouped at the top of the hill. A swift run down the track led us to the Bridge and then we had a quick visit to the “Low Pond” and the climbed to the house. Along the raised walk and under the bridge by the well and then we went to view the house. The house was burnt down in 1899 leaving just a shell we gazed through the windows into the shell and then headed of down the drive.
At a fork in the road we took the steep off track route to The Knights Law Tower , at the tower Bill turned up Map-less having dropped it on the way up. Steve headed back to retrieve said map as the rest of us ran through the woods to the radio mast and after a final regroup we took a quick deviation to add on a few hundred yards before heading down the hill to Clippers.
We had a lovely run of just over 5 miles which left us ready for the lovely curry (and Beer) that followed.
Thanks for the idea Joel!
25 Carnethies set off from KB, most in very festive attire, with Elf costumes proving to be the order of the day. The weather had turned a tad cooler although the wind at least kept the rain away. Being a newbie to this hallowed event I was unsure of the format but soon found there wasn’t much to it apart from run a bit, have a drink, repeat! And make sure the person at the front knows where we are heading next! Our first stop was the rugby club (Liberton?) where we received a warm welcome and instantly increased their profits by 100% as we were the only clientele. This phenomenon would be repeated more than once. The first highlight of the evening was gate crashing the wake in The Waverley where one of the guests made a beeline for Richard (the only one unlucky enough to be driving) and soon had him out on the dance floor. Others joined in – you were scared not to! Highlight number 2 had to be the still warm mince pies and mulled wine (thank you Willie!) by the site of a pub which was formerly on the pub run but no longer exists! Nigel Shekelton’s hallway stood in admirably for the second missing pub (the bottle of Old Pulteney appeared to evaporate) while Stewart Whitlie’s garage was a very welcome stop with the amiable host serving yet more whisky, beer and even homemade tablet. As someone said “keep running fast Stewart” to win more whisky for next year! The Stable Bar would be our second last stop. They even laid on some festive beers – Rocking Rudolph or a very smooth Orcadian Clootie Dumpling. Sadly there was only time to sample one if we were to make it to the Northfield for 11am and our late supper. The soup and sandwiches were worth it though and proved to be the icing on the cake of a very enjoyable evening. Thank you to Nick, Willie and anyone else who was involved in the organising! I’ll be back next year. Merry Christmas everyone!
Alan Hogg’s photos here
||The Club November Night Run was a couple of weeks ago, but as there is no report yet here is my view from the back.
I was being chased up dark paths through unknown woods for a while, until everyone overtook me and I shuffled past Harelaw to the “where is that ******* gate” of my normal thursday night run. Then it was a nice jog down and through Poet’s Glen back to the start.
Good food and beer followed at the Riccarton Inn.
Ballad of The Battle of Roslin
|Grey wis the dawnin’ ower Rosewell,
When the Englishmen were roosin,
Gay wis Sir Simon Fraser’s yell,
“Castail Dhuni” echoed eight thoosan’,
Ten thoosan’ English, eight thoosan’ Scot,
The prior’s prayers were spoken,
Ane fiery charge such terror wrought,
That the English lines were broken.
But ballad writers stay your pen…
This was no sporting battle,
Sir Simon chased after the fleeing men,
And cut them down like cattle.
The Fraser, the Colmun and St. Clair,
Wer’na men tae slaughter,
But they faced twenty thoosan’ English mair,
So they derna gie them quarter.
An Farmers tae this verra day,
When they’re at the ploo-in’,
Still find shinbanes in the clay,
At a place they ca’ “The Hewin.”
Ten thoosan’ cam’ fae Rosewell Dyke,
Wi’ General Randolf leadin’,
Again the spears o’ercame the pike,
But mony gude Scots lay bleedin’.
Sudden an army cam’ up on the fight,
And the Scots were like to flee,
Prior Abernethy begged them tae fight,
But no man heard his plea.
“Look ower, look ower, on yonder hill,”
Quo’ Sir Simon lood and clear,
They blick’t and saw the lift gae ill,
Then saw a cross appear.
|“‘Tis gude St. Andrew,” cried ae man,
And doon they gaed tae pray,
“Gae to,” they heard the gude Sir Simon,
“Gae to, we’ll win the day.”
They ca’d the cross hill “Abernethy,”
Where they layed the Prior’s banes,
But soon they renamed it “Carnethy,”
Fae a’ the pilgrim’s stanes.
We mind the twa Frasers, o’ Colmyn tae,
And o’ the true St. Clair,
First tae the fecht, the Graham gay,
Dark Douglas tae wis there.
But wha made the cross fae the blasted tree,
That gied the Scots such solace?
Ma freens, ye surely needna ask me,
It was Sir William Wallace
On Wednesday night around 20 Carnethies ran from Red Moss car park near Balerno. We ran along the track by Threipmuir Reservoir to Black Springs, and then up Den’s Cleugh. In my usual place at the back I followed a very misty line of disappearing head torches to the top of Black Hill and lost the path in peat bogs. It was slightly easier running down the other side of the hill to the Green Cleugh and Bavelaw Castle, and then a lovely run down the road back to Red Moss and food at the Grey Horse in Balerno. Thanks to Euan for organising the run and food.
We were surprised to find that it was windy. And a very cold wind too. But the air was crystal clear and the ground frozen. A sliver of moon sank on the horizon and the stars were clear and bright. The Flotterstone Inn was warm and the food good (though I forgot to take a pic)! And I had dry feet!
I remember this “Not the C5” night run from last year as being very wet (positively soggy in fact, especially between Charlie’s Loup and the shoulder of Turnhouse), but on Wednesday night the ground was surprisingly dry and the night clear. The wind on the summit of Turnhouse was wild, though and it was a challenge to stay on the narrow path. I thought I’d come well prepared this time with my spanking new Petzl head torch, but the battery petered out at the top of Carnethy. I used the torch on my phone to help me round the rest of the route, but ended up being even slower than usual. Thankfully Jim kept me company at the back. My problems with light didn’t end on the hills, though. Instead of changing into dry clothes in the Flotterstone car park, I decided to change in the Ladies, only to find myself in a toilet where there was a timed light switch, so I was plunged into darkness yet again! Next year I’ll bring two head torches and remember to take one that works into the loo.
||A nice route through the forests and into Glentress territory. Glimpses through the trees of wooded gullies and sudden hillocks, made mysterious by darkness and torchlight. Occasionally emerging into wide valleys with the sound of rushing water.
And as a backdrop, alleged hill runner Willie saying “that’s a long hill”, “is that hill finished yet?”, “are we nearly there yet?”, “I’m never believing Kate again” and variations thereof. It was a good distance at 7.14 miles, but by no means the longest night run we’ve done – Broughton 6.96m, Garleton 7.11m, Cramond 7.27m, 12 days of Xmas 7.4m and 8.6m Aberlady.
For afters we went to the former Cross Keys now Wetherspoons where they served a remarkably good pint for a remarkably cheap price, and cheap and cheerful food. I might move to Peebles!
The group of fancy dressed runners slowly descended on Roslin, a few Lab technicians and a robot were joined by a wolf with the final coven of witches arriving to make 18 runners in total.
We headed off down Manse Road and into the Spooky “Witchy Wood” and on along to the old Ice House before winding our way through the trees to the Bilston Viaduct.
Then we travelled to the Hewan Bank and along the Esk to opposite Hawthornden Castle over fallen trees and lots of mud. The landslips in Roslin Glen meant a diversion into the fields was the order of the night so we missed the slippy riverside path.
After regrouping we headed along to Roslin Castle. Then through Roslin Country Park and up the road to Roslin Castle Station and along the railway Cycle way.
The fast downhill towards the Old Gunpowder Mill was rewarded with an excellent Fireworks Display in the ruins. Thanks to Nick MacDonald and Bob Waterhouse.
Then we ran along the Esk and Back to past Roslin Chapel to The Original Rosslyn Inn for some beer and food along with the passing round of Nick’s scary mask.
A good fun night.
||Knowing Matt’s gift for ultra running epics we were a bit doubtful of finishing the night run before the weekend but in the event it was a very nice route featuring trail, pine trees, fields and gentle hills, which we completed in only slightly over the time. And the weather had cleared to give a beautiful evening.
Afters in the Laurel Bank Tearoom, where the food was very well presented. And so to the soup… A very generous portion of… was it roasted cauliflower or leek and potato?
I wasn’t sure and helpfully my colleagues yelled at the chef “he can’t tell what it is!”. Thanks guys! Nice though!
||A sparkling starry night took us on a very pleasant route around the environs of Torduff and Clubbiedean reservoirs. That was the last of the night runs. From now on it’s handicaps! First one is at Boghall on the 15th April.|
The annual non-reccie of the Carnethy5 left from Flotterstone at 7:05.
It was a fine night for a run as 21 of us headed off for Turnhouse, having pre-ordered our food frem the Flotterstone Inn. It was a nice night for a run, but with a cold wind we decided to regroup in the wind shadow of the hill. On the way to the summit, JimBob hatched a plan to add some more hills to the planned route, so as we regrouped at the Turnhouse, Carnethy col he announced his plan. With no takers we continued up to our Spiritual Home and re grouped in the protection of the Carnethy Cairn.
We ran off on the route of the C5 and after about 400 yards we (or some of us at least) found the forbidden scree and hot footed down to Charlie’s Loup. Michael went a bit far right and we watched as his head torch descended. Fred lost sight of all of us and waited to accompany Margaret down the heather to the waiting head torches. A jog along the track above the wall took us on a nice contour back to the slopes of Turnhouse. The bog crossing was surprisingly dry and we climbed and passed between the hill fort and the Rullion Green battleground. Smelling the beer of Flotterstone we scooted down the hill to the waiting log fire and a hearty meal.
A wonderful night run
||Group that went to Hopetoun Monument:
Click for full gallery
As the runners arrived at KB last night, the bar became filled with a plethora of light shows, with LED body cover, skin suits and even Freddie Mercury and his hoover.
34 runners set off and most completed the 13 mile route, with a few joiners en route we got to 40 runners at one point.
Ending up in Alison’s Kitchen for a wonderful feast.
More coming once I remember it.
Could Jim have found a muddier start to our run?
Some types of mud…
I think that had there been a herd of Hippopotami in Carlops Glen it would not have been worse.
We quagmired our way along the Fairliehope Burn and walked the plank across the river before climbing The Mount.
The social group had naturally split into 2 so we stayed with that. As the faster socials headed off the slower social ran on to the source of Deer Hope and followed/staggered our way down the glen until we thought we were near the North Esk Reservoir and then headed East to try to find Carlops.
Carlops was there and so were the fast and the faster social groups, we enjoyed a good meal and a nice pint (until the real ale ran out).
Good Fun as ever!
We weren’t lost. We were merely taking the opportunity to use Nicola’s rather fine map printed on cloth!
The ‘slow’ group –
A slow paddle up and down the tributaries of the North Esk in the dark, made for slow but steady progress, covering more ground than the faster runners who ran ahead. I thought we ran some of it, but 1 hour 20 minutes to cover 3 miles including time to recover Philippa’s shoes suggests otherwise. One of muddiest night runs of all time.
It was busy in the traffic on the way to The Cramond Brig. Pulling into the car park 10 minutes late the group of asssorted Witches, Ghouls, Demons, Ghosts and a Carnethy Superman made a strange sight.
After ordering the food we headed over the Cramond Brig and up stream on the banks of the Almond and then into Cammo Estate.
We found the main drive and headed for the ruined house where the tale of The Carnethy Curse. The Hunter who attacked a past President in Cammo who Carsed him, and chased him into a bog where he turned into a pig and sank in. All that was left above the bog was a trotter!
Then we ran along the canal (or curling pond) and into the spooky walled garden, then headed west and through the wall onto Turnhouse Hill to find the Trig Point.
After a run in and out of the wo-ooo-oo-oods we headed south and ran back into Cammo round the old quarry where we were attacked by The Hound.
Then up to the Hill where the Tower should be (it was move 30 years ago), then down to the tower where we all grouped in the guano for a photo.
Running across the field we braved the haunted stable before running back to the ruin of the house where a spectacular fireworks display ensued (thanks to a patient Nick MacDonald),
Click image for gallery
What a fun, fantastic, wonderful night run! I had a great time and I might have just taken Willie somewhere he had never been. 23 runners from the Hawes Inn set off to meet 3 runners off the train plus local guy Michael making 27 in total, a fantastic turn out. A ploughed field that was not muddy – not what I had planned! – was followed by a steady climb to snowdrop strewn paths and great views of the Forth, North Edinburgh and Hound Point. A steady return via the moon lit beaches, not that romantic as most light comes from the Oil Tanker Loading Terminal, however enough to make a pleasant route back to the pub.
A bottle of Balvenie was up for grabs for the most interesting ‘find’ on the run, Kate judged the presentations, dominated by a rampant Willie Gibson, high on a fasting day, full of Harry Potter references of a very dubious form, closely challenged by a very confused Matt; Modern Art has never been so, erm, well -modern. I wish more than one prize was on offer. Sick squid, razor shells, broken crockery, half buoys, a good and humorous volley of presentations but Willie reigned supreme and claimed the bottle! – sadly not opened on the evening, Hey Ho. A memorable cycle home helped by Peroni and IPA with Matt, James, Phill and Chris, great grub from a very hospitable Hawes Inn staff, strangely on this occasion we had too much cash!, Phil might have paid twice to redeem himself!!!
I enjoyed it so much I might just organise another run!
27 runners, 25 stayed for food plus Kate and Craig for drink!!
With the rest of the UK battered by storms and floods, and with memories of last year’s blizzard on the run, it turned out to be a relatively benign and pleasant jaunt over Turnhouse and Carnethy. Willie almost blotted his copybook by missing the promised scree run but we did find it and filled our shoes with gravel, to enhance the boggy return to Flotterstone. A few marks lost at the pub for salty soup and dry bread but my neighbour’s chips were very good and the aromas of the various meals were very enticing. Good beer as well and the lovely glowing stove to thaw out in front of.
Now, who had the Scampi? According to the pub one meal wasn’t paid for and Helen is now out of pocket!
An excellent turnout considering the downpour that preceded. At 6:45 there was just me, then gradually another 17 appeared out of the rain, including Porty (he’ll crack and join soon) Graham who ran from Straiton and just made it as we were setting off.