Thursday, October 30, 2008

Perhaps The Craziest Thing I have Ever Done.

We have had a wee run of nasty weather recently. This week we've had snow which is sttill present on the hills around us. Last week we had rain and gales, this lasted for the whole of the 'tatty holidays' the last week I was off work but did almost nothing because of the dire conditions.

On Saturday 25th I did do something, something I will remember for a long time and something for which my body is still hurting.

The Charmer

Saunders decided we were entering several months ago, as it is a two person relay I decided to go first as I am the slower one.

The 4 mile downhill run, 4 mile cycle and 4 mile run back up look like this with just the cycle gradient shown.

From Charmer2008-10-25

Lets get the nitty gritty out of the way first. I finished a disgusting 151st out of 182. Saunders had a respectable 44th which gave our team a 47th out of 91.

The first thing I must say about race day was that the wind was quite strong. Here is an extract from the official race day report:

"Winds in excess of 120 mph on Cairngorm did not deter a record number of 91 teams (out of a total of 105 who had pre-entered) turning up for the second staging of the Cairngorm Charmer ...
which is a challenging enough route even without the 120 mph winds thrown in!"

In fact the wind was so bad that:

"a number of broken car windscreens which had been damaged by the wind"
It was blowing in the windows in cars !

It was chilly at the start and I was glad to be going first.

From Charmer2008-10-25

I was off downhill with my starting group of five. We went five at a time at one minute intervals.

From Charmer2008-10-25

Down we go...

From Charmer2008-10-25

Look at the heart rate data for running downhill, it should be quite low but when the 'run' is actually someone trying not to be blown over it's a different story.

From Charmer2008-10-25

The cycle was quite easy although some of it was into the wind so at 4 mph !

After the cycle it was time to run back up the hill. I don't look well :)

From Charmer2008-10-25

I did make it back up, having to walk the last 2 miles into the wind.

Saunders made it too in a much more respectable time.

From Charmer2008-10-25

We received a goody bag at the end and in light of the exceptional circumstanes they included a printout from the Cairngorm Weather Station's annemometer.

From Charmer2008-10-25

I will actaully be doing this again next year just because it was so crazy. Hoping for a lot of snow next year, we only missed it by a couple of days this time.

Oh, once again BIG thanks to the support team of Karen, Jean, Sol, Molly and Hollie.
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