a low key start in the playing field round the back of the Navigation Inn took us through the pub car park, over the footbridge before a right turn then sharp left to start the climb up Eccles Pike.
the good thing about races like this is by the time you've glanced at your watch the first 10 minutes or so have already passed and you're already 1/3 into the race. no time for resting during these ones.
As soon as the race heads off road the climbing is relentless but still runnable, it's not until the final climb up to the summit that you're reduced to a walk. this is one where the leading runners pass you on their way back down as you're still making your way up, but a passing team mate cheered me on and put a spring in my step to help me up the hill. it's not too bad up to the summit as you can see how far's left to climb; I remember thinking that the ~1000' of climb had come about quickly.
from there on in it's a case of how fast you dare go back down the way you came, i gave it a fair bit but didn't want to over do it before Saturday's Hadrian's Wall attempt.
I had a good tussle with a Glossopdale runner and managed to see him off over the footbridge (the Millennium Walkway training must have paid off!)
there didn't seem to be many runners at this one, maybe they were put off by the rain earlier in the day. there certainly were very few Goyt Valley vests on show.
it was good to catch up with Nick Ham who came in about a minute before me. well done Nick.
next stop Hadrian's Wall!