The Yorkshire 3 Peaks has been on the to do list for a while. For one reason or another I never got round to entering the race, so this last weekend I decided to give it a shot on my own. I had no intentions of running too quickly as I’ve not trained much since the Scarfell Pike Marathon. I think the pulled muscle I sustained during that race may have been tear, as my quad only really fully healed at the start of September!
So, after a scenic drive over from Starbottom I set off from Horton just after 8.00am, it was decent running weather; overcast but not too cold or hot. I followed the path past Horton Scar and up onto the fell. The footpaths started as farm tracks and then got progressively more like pavements until you get to the summit ridge of Pen-y-Gent. I got to the summit relatively quickly, but it was shrouded in low cloud so I moved on without much hanging around. The route then descends across Horton Moor over a mixture of terrain. It then picks up on some well defined paths which lead to Nether Lodge. From there a dirt roads takes you to the road to Ribblehead. After a kilometer or so along the road I reached the stunning viaduct. I stopped for a quick snap and a 9Bar then set-off on the path that follows the train line up the valley. The footpath that leads to the Whernside takes a very round-about route and the fell runner in me really wanted to take a more direct line (permission for the direct route is only granted for the day of the race I believe). I got onto the summit ridge where the wind pick-up so I donned my jacket from Aldi. After taking in the views of the other two summits I headed down towards Chapel-le-Dale. On the way down I passed a sign left over from the fell race stating a distance of 25km’s. Time for another 9Bar!
After crossing the road at Chapel-le-Dale (turn left and the footpath is on the right just after the pub) and then navigating a couple of fields full of cows I picked up the path up Ingleborough. The flag stone section is a bit of a slog but the steep section (stairs maybe a better description) and rocky summit plateau are highlights of the route. After tagging the summit it was just the long descent back down to Horton. I was definitely feeling the lack of proper running in my legs at this point as I would usually blast down this final stretch of the run, however I jogged down at a more leisurely pace to save the legs. There are some really interesting (well I thought they were anyway) rock formations on this section and the views back over Pen-y-Gent are great. I found myself back in Horton just after 1.00pm having had a thoroughly enjoyable morning on the hills.
It was the first time I’d used 9Bars for nutrition whilst running and I thought they were perfect. Easy to digest and provided the much needed energy boost! They will be my go-to food for future runs.
A few pics from the route:
The descent from Ingleborough
A waterfall on route to Whernside
You’ll do well to get lost!
No running blog is complete without a selfie on a hill 😉