Jules Coleman (navigation)
As we ran down the road to Newsome House, I must confess to a moment of quiet satisfaction. Not that I was in any way complacent about how things were going you understand - far from it - it was just that I knew I had an exceptional team with me and this inspires confidence. I've seen some attempts go out with quite inexperienced supporters and no matter how good a runner they might be, in these situations you need people who've been out there and got the T-shirt, I know that sounds unkind but a lot can depend on having the right person by your side, otherwise they become a bit of a liability ..... you definitely couldn't say that about this bunch, there can't have been many attempts this year with so many successful BGers as supporters. A combination of factors (second attempt, holidays, postponement etc) meant that some just couldn't be there, but I still had a wealth of experience running with me. If I couldn't get round with this lot, I was probably never going to.
|Leg 2 Supporters - Dave A, Jules and Martin|
My friend Rich will tell you that a lot of BG attempts founder on leg 2 during the night and I know he's right, a lot of the summits are on a plateau and difficult to find when the visibility is down to 20ft and the rain coming in sideways. There was going to be none of that tonight, we found all the Dodds without trouble and before I knew it we'd gone past Helvellyn and had done Nethermost Pike (another hard one in the dark) before heading off to Dollywaggon. A slight hiccup here - we momentarily lost sight of Jules and Stolly (who were both running well ahead) and a moment's disorientation made us think we'd missed the line off the path to the summit. Actually, we were still a good distance away, but all the same we dived off the tourist path to ...... well, nothing if I'm honest, just a few odd rocks but definitely not Dollywaggon (we were were in the High Crags vicinity). Thankfully, we realised the mistake and scooted on down to DP in a heartbeat, Dave reckons it didn't cost us more than a minute and I think he's right. At this point I normally head straight for the famous fencepost and down the quad-crushing Dollywaggon descent to Grisedale Tarn, but Jules went off way before the post and did a nice little traverse across the slope (which he claims was just an on-the-spot decision!), it seemed much kinder on the legs and this was definitely the way I wanted it, my intention was to save the descending legs as long as possible. Fairfield - another notoriously nasty climb - came and went bang on schedule and before I knew it we were climbing Seat Sandal and leg 2 was nearly over. I suppose it was around 2.00am by this point and as we ran off Seat Sandal it (oddly) began to feel very humid and we were invaded by bugs and moths! Stolly had borrowed Emma's killer Hope headtorch and literally had a performing circus of moths flying around his head, not what you need when you're trying to do a steep and difficult technical descent in the dark.
|Seat Sandal (viewed from Fairfield)|
To be continued - watch out for the next part!