Introduction

The Joss Naylor Lakeland Challenge route leaves Pooley Bridge to traverse 30 summits over a distance of 48 miles and climbs 17,000 feet (77km, 5182m).

The inaugural run from Pooley Bridge to Wasdale was made by Joss Naylor in 1990, at the age of 54; in very bad weather with heavy rain and a strong SW wind Joss completed the run to Greendale Bridge in 11 hours and 30 minutes.

Chris Brasher offered engraved pewter tankards to the first 20 runners to do so with the proviso that they raised at least £100 for a charity of their own choice. In January 1997, with 17 tankards already awarded, Chris extended his sponsorship. In 2001, with 33 tankards awarded, Joss secured on-going sponsorship for the tankards.

The challenge is offered to fell runners over the age of 50 to complete the run in set times according to their age group. The challenge is intended to be a "supported run" for individuals - each contender is to be accompanied on every leg for safety reasons and unaccompanied attempts will not be recognised. There is more information on the Challenge Details page below.

If you are interested, please have a look at the Challenge Details, download a schedule or contact me using the "Email Ian Charters" form below.

Thursday, 17 December 2015

Elise Milnes (W55) – 05 September 2015



5am September 5th at Pooley Bridge on a quite cold and clear morning.  I’m meeting my navigator Geoff Cox for the first time.  The rest of my support team are Carol Morgan, Simon Franklin and Paul Calderbank.

Not only were the weather Gods smiling on us, but on the drive over we had seen a badger in the road, a live one which was a first for me, we took this as a good omen – I was going to survive the day!

The sunrise was beautiful with just the odd cloud kissing a summit, my favourite time of the day in my favourite place.

Leg 1 went to schedule.  Carol and Paul made sure I ate and drank plenty which set me up for the whole day.  The navigation was perfect and we started to gain a few minutes.  For me the Leg felt relaxed and organised and the chat made time fly by.

We descended into Kirkstone to some very loud cheering from my road support, mainly Issy.  My husband Graham and Clare Harris fed and watered everyone.  There were lots of hugs and we were off, up Red Screes on Leg 2 with a new team, Tom Phillips navigating, Linda Murgatroyd and Steve Foster as timekeeper and pacer.  Also joining us was Louise Stunell, a total newbie to these mountains and the Lake District and what a day to show it off, blue sky, warm sunshine and views that take your breath away – or maybe that was the march up Red Screes!

This Leg also flew by, gaining time on nearly every summit, Tom knows the best lines!  At Seat Sandal Nick Harris joined us and the descent into Dunmail was deafening, thanks again to Issy.  I was worried, this was not Lake District behaviour, we could be barred!  It was very up lifting and I felt the smile over take my face.

Same crew for Leg 3 minus Louise and (sorry if this is getting boring) text book perfect, gaining more time as we were going, I was well looked after and ate well.  Much to Tom’s bewilderment, Linda and I never stopped talking, only to eat!  Great Gable crept into the conversation, it was too far away, I didn’t want to know, so it was pointed out even more!  From High Raise, the second one, we could see that something was on top of it which looked like a giant sheep, it was a helicopter, shame I liked the idea of a giant sheep!

At Great End we were met by Phil and Jackie Scarf and got to Sty Head in good time where Graham and Clare were waiting, quiet here, no Issy!  My final team, Peter McNulty and Mick Bull navigating and pacers Sheila McNulty, Jackie and Phil Scarf.  The plan was to finish in daylight, we pressed on, I still felt strong.  But Seatallan was looming, it’s a monstrous climb that seemed to take longer than the whole round, my legs said No!  I did think I should have a word with Joss about this hill, so near the end, it’s cruelty!  I made it to the summit and on to Middle Fell to be met by Graham and Clare with the news that Joss was waiting on the bridge.  There was still life in my legs and I descended at full pace – it seemed fast to me!!  15 hours and 14 minutes and in daylight!


It was truly a magical, enjoyable day which I will cherish forever and made possible by my fantastic supporters – thank you.  

A special thanks to Clare Harris who suggested I had a go at the JNC and organised everything.

2 comments:

  1. Brillant write up Elise. So happy to have been a small part of it (and sorry about bullying you into eating!). Cx

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  2. Well done, great effort and write up along with a first class support team :)

    ReplyDelete