The weekly club run
It was the weekly Calder Valley Fell Runners club run last night an opportunity to meet up with other runners and explore the wonderful Calder Valley. We meet every Tuesday at 6:30pm for a 6:45pm start. The route varies as much as it can as we run from Mytholmroyd Community Centre every week but the changing elements play a part too making each run different and last nights was no exception.
We set off under blue skies with dark clouds lurking ominously. We were heading for the ‘other’ Crow Hill and although I’ve run this route before it’s not a route I’m familiar with. There was a good sized group of us spread out and it was nice to see some old faces amongst them, people I haven’t seen for a while due to lockdown.
We didn’t have to go far before the heavens opened and the rain came heavily. I had put a thin shower proof jacket on but in all honesty it was not enough to prevent me getting soaked to the skin within minutes of the rain starting. Being a fell runner though this didn’t put me off and I simply ran faster to keep warm. The trails and roads were soaking wet now and this made progress tricky and I had to be careful I didn’t slip on the gleaming Yorkshire stone. I’ve gone over before on this surface and I’m very careful now when I run on it.
It wasn’t long before we were at the base of the final climb to Crow Hill and I had warmed up now and was feeling strong so I pushed the pace going up to the trig point. At the top I and everyone else was rewarded with far reaching views over the Calder Valley and the skies were particularly spectacular tonight due to the storm moving away and being replaced by sunshine and blue sky.
I shot off back down the hill something I do regularly now. I have never been that confident going downhill but recently I have vastly improved and my confidence is soaring now on the descents. I’m enjoying the thrill of running as fast as I dare downhill and gaining in confidence all the time. We carried on with the descent down to the Hinchcliffe Arms at Cragg Vale. I was especially careful going down the steep trail to Cragg Vale Road as I slipped on this when it was dry and this time it was very wet. I managed to stay upright despite a few scary moments this time but it’s a trail I’d rather go up than down!
We ran back to Mytholmroyd alongside Elphin Brook again very tricky in parts and especially so last night. I enjoyed it though as it gave me an opportunity to hone my technical trail skills. Soon we were back at the Community Centre and despite my aching limbs I was very satisfied with my run. I am feeling the benefits of the changes I have made and my mental and physical approach to running has improved enormously. I’m losing weight and gaining strength and I’m able to push the pace for longer now. I feel like a runner again and I’m ready to take on anything.