Sunday, 25 September 2011

More LMH Recce - 18/09/2011

JT on the road in Gogbatch
With the Long Mynd Hike less than two weeks away I was keen to check out the Church Stretton part of the loop and make sure I'd got it sussed.

JT and I set off from Stretton on a fairly chilly Sunday morning to do the first and last few miles, climbing Caer Caradoc, the Lawley and up High Park to Pole Bank before cutting off across to Pole Cottage and descending into Minton, crossing the A49 and finishing with a climb up Ragleth Hill.

JT was feeling a bit grim but got a pasty down himself at the Spar and we started running just across the main road. We walked most of the way up Caradoc, and then took the descent steady too (I was in my Peregrines which aren't the grippiest and JT's trailies have done about 1,000 miles and have no grip left). Crossing onto Ragleth Hill I felt quite lively, although JT was still not up to much. A big shower hit us near the top and the soaking did us both some good - strange how adverse weather can sometimes get you into it a bit more.

We made our way over to Dudgeley and Gogbatch, where the pasty kicked in and John started to get going. I liked his variant route climbing up the spur rather than the road to get out of the batch and up towards High Park.

We split at the finger post: JT went the low route and I took the higher path to see which was quicker to the top of Mott's Road - conclusion was the higher route (I only just got to Motts after JT and he's quicker than me).

We ran on fairly quickly over Pole Bank and on to pick up the last section of the Hike route from Pole Cottage. I like the descent to Minton - I'd not been all the way down before, just on the upper section when I did my Gill Harris round.

The path down to Minton - JT is about 100 yards in front...
The road to Little Stretton wasn't great though, and I felt out of energy going up Ragleth Hill. JT ran on and I followed, meeting up on Sandford Avenue before running back to our vehicles by the School where Hike HQ will be.

We had a nice morning out, covering 16.5 miles and 3,500' of climbing in 3hrs 26mins.

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