Wednesday, 20 March 2013

Cobden Cross Hill Reps - Runner Vs Bike!

Since "The Trigger" I have mainly being doing the Cobden Cross, Mellor Church route, which is about 16 Km (10 miles) with about 450 m of climbing. This is a 1:45ish run but I have being doing it quite regularly since January so my fitness levels are not too bad. I am due to help out PaulB on his Bog Graham in the second half of April so it is time I start to ramp up my mileage (and more importantly climbing). I enjoy the Mellor Church but there is not a large amount of climbing on it as once the initial climb to Cobden Cross is complete I more or less stay high until the decent after Mellor Church. The running around Marple would not be true fell running territory, it would be mainly trail running but they would be pretty challenging trails. The longest climb in the area would be about 200 m (over 1Km) of assent from the river Goyte up to Cobden Cross.

Last night I dropped off my daughter off at the Gang Show, went to the supermarket to get some coffee for my wife who has failed in her attempt to give the stuff up. Then at 19:20 off on a run,  with the head torch and  2:30 hours available to me before the post show pickup. I do not normally get out this early, it would often be after 9pm before I get out. I though being out earlier I might meet some mountain bikers as the Marple trails are popular MTB territory. Out of Marple and down the Roman Lakes road to meet a coupe of MTBs comming up and then further down a runner without a light. Obviously he was out a bit longer than intended as it was pretty much dark at this stage.

Overlooking Manchester from Cobden (Mellor) Cross

 I decided to try a few reps up to Cobden Cross. This is OK as are there are a number of routes up to it from the Goyte river valley.  I done my first "up and down" and on the second "up" from Shaw Farm I saw a runner coming towards me it turned out to be Pennine's GeoffB. I have been running these hills for four years and, despite a number of club mates living around the area, only once before have I met another Pennine runner. A little chat about the Edale Skyline then continue the climb. I got up to Cobden Cross four times so you can have a bit of fun trying to trace my route on the map below! The weather conditions were great and underfoot it was not too bad either so a very enjoyable run.

Up and Down from Cobden Cross

Passing Linnet Clough scout camp on the final decent to Marple I met a group of about ten mountain bikers resulting in a race down to Bottoms Hall. I threw caution to the wind struggling on the rocky decent as my batteries were getting a bit tired. I reached the bottom in about 7th place. They waited at the bottom for the stragglers to catch up and I kept going up to start the final climb up to "Strines Rec". They came after me but once on the climb they could not catch up with me as running up hill is faster than a bike.  Another one of my regular climbs is from Strines Station up to the Fox's pub. A couple of times on this I overtook MTBs on this climb. When I first started using Strava I accidental uploaded one of my runs as a bike ride and, I felt very proud, as the Strains Station up to the Fox's pub segment had me in 9th place out of 80. When I realised my mistake and changed it back to a run I was down to 3rd out of 4.
I waited at the top to have a chat and the leaders were a bit put out that I beat them to the top!

Manchester From Cobden Cross
In the end I done 20 Km with 840 metres of climbing so not a bad run.

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