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Two go trail running together!

Two go trail running together!

Postby Gillzajoker » 05 Sep 2020 11:51

I am amazed at the stamina of you both! And enjoying more of your great photos, especially the
one of the Mill on the Great Stour - I'd be happy to hang that on my wall as a picture, any day! :D
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Two go trail running together!

Postby Dave » 05 Sep 2020 12:22

Gillzajoker wrote:I am amazed at the stamina of you both! And enjoying more of your great photos, especially the
one of the Mill on the Great Stour - I'd be happy to hang that on my wall as a picture, any day! :D

It's a fantastic spot Gill. On one sunny walk, we ate our lunch sitting on the riverbank opposite the mill. 8-)
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Two go trail running together!

Postby Dave » 05 Sep 2020 12:47

For this morning's 10km run, we parked by an out-of-the-way church near Blean - just a few minutes' drive away - and did a circuit through the villages of Tyler Hill and Broad Oak, which lie a little north of Canterbury. BTW, the greyish shapes to the left of Broad Oak on the map make up a vast covered area of strawberries:

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This is a very convenient place to start a walk. There's never anyone here (except perhaps on Sundays!) and several footpaths are close by, including the Crab and Winkle Way, the Canterbury Outer Ring and the Big Blean Walk. (Oh, and that's my wife's new car - her first non-Fiat 500 for many years!)

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Just setting off across the field by the church... and where we ended the 22.6 mile Canterbury Outer Ring walk last year:

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Me managing to make it to the other side of the field... :)

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A couple of attempts at arty shots...

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A couple of shots of me standing on bridges - early on (L) and near the end (R)...:

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...and another one a little over halfway through before we crossed one of many corn fields on the route. At this point, we should have gone left at the top of the steps, but the path was too overgrown, so we crossed the field and tried to make our way along the border on the far side...

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...where there was no path and we were technically trespassing, but all went reasonably well. :)

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Apart, that is, from having to climb through the occasional fallen tree! :)

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Saying hello to some young cattle:

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This was another thoroughly enjoyable run, albeit with slightly more walking than usual due to there being lots of gates as well as some overgrown and blocked paths to negotiate. Actually, I don't mind obstructions in the least, because they're a chance to get my breath back!
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Two go trail running together!

Postby Dave » 10 Oct 2020 14:54

This morning, my wife and I drove to the White Horse Country Park car park on Detling Hill near Maidstone to do a 10k road and trail run, with the odd bit of walking thrown in. :)

We descended the steep hill down to Thurnham, where we joined the Pilgrim's Way. Then we ran along this very quiet country lane through Broad Street and on to the next farm. We climbed the very steep track up to the North Downs Way, which we followed back to the start.

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The elevation chart shows the variety of slopes we encountered... the steep descent to Thurnham, a fairly level section before the farm, a very steep climb up to the NDW where the going was level-ish before turning extremely undulating for the final stretch!

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We began with an easy run down to Thurnham:

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The Pilgrim's Way and one of several lovely houses at Broad Street:

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The track leading up to the North Downs Way. My wife ran most of it, while I walked the entire climb!

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Fantastic views to the west and to the south from the easier bit of the North Downs Way:

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A short, but very steep climb to begin the final quarter of the route - again, my wife ran it while I walked. And a view from the top:

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Next followed what is probably the most challenging section of the entire North Downs Way. This part has a seemingly never-ending succession of staircases going up and down. Having got to the top of one long climb, there's an equally long steep descent that you know is completely pointless because when you get to the bottom there'll be another steep climb ahead. And again and again!

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This is a bit of the final long down before the final long up. I learned one thing today though... my wife might be much better than me at running uphill, but I'm better at running down! :)

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A final note for anyone considering a walk or run involving the North Downs Way: for much of its length in Kent, the NDW runs roughly parallel to and never very far from the Pilgrim's Way, which is usually a quiet country lane or byway at the foot of the hills. This makes planning circular routes extremely easy, because tracks link the two ways at frequent intervals.
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Two go trail running together!

Postby Gillzajoker » 11 Oct 2020 10:57

Ah well, then honour is restored in the running stakes! :lol: Great photos of fabulous scenery, though :D
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Two go trail running together!

Postby Dave » 13 Dec 2020 13:18

It was raining this morning as we set off from home on our weekend 10k run, so we decided to go up into the woods on the cycle track for 3.1 miles then turn around and return the way we went.

The cycle track (a completely traffic-free link between Whitstable and Canterbury) has recently been widened in places - as shown below. I wasn't keen on having the nice footpath turned into a cycle-motorway, but at least it makes social distancing easier than before...

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At our turnaround point in a farmyard, we decided to forget about the easy, gravelly path and return on a proper off-road trail. It was very muddy, slippery and tremendous fun, but that's what trail-running is all about. We love it! :thumbup:

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On the main track, we passed lots of walkers, loads of cyclists, and even more runners. Pre-covid, we'd probably have passed just one or two people on a day like today. Still, at least we had the muddy trail all to ourselves. :)

As for clothing... I'm still fine in just a normal long-sleeved walking base-layer with a super-thin Adidas running jacket on top. Now it's getting colder, I've started wearing Salomon leggings under Marmot shorts (shorts are compulsory over leggings!). Even in December rain, I don't feel too cold or too warm or even wet - only pleasantly cool. I do carry a lightweight gilet in my backpack though, just in case of emergency!
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Two go trail running together!

Postby Gillzajoker » 14 Dec 2020 12:31

Like the pictures, Dave, but still think 'masochists'! Interesting about your gear, though - although
it's warm outside, indoors it's many degrees cooler, so I am well bundled up! :D
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Two go trail running together!

Postby Dave » 20 Mar 2021 15:45

It's been more than three whole months since we last went out for a trail run/walk together, partly because of the lockdown and partly because it's been too cold!

We're also still not driving to do exercise until lockdown is officially over and we've avoided our nearby woods because of their new-found popularity. But the woods are the best place to run and so we went there anyway and did a 7 mile circuit of our favourite tracks while avoiding the main thoroughfares. It was a good plan because, apart from on the farm track to and from the woods, we hardly saw a soul. :)

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Today was the first outing for my new trail runners. I've actually had them for several weeks and worn them a lot... but only on the treadmill. Now it was time to see how they'd cope with real trails!

Before (pristine) and after. One feature I especially like is the stretchy pouch at the top of the tongue that the laces can be tucked into - no snagging on undergrowth!

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I'd expected the side trails to be muddy, but I hadn't expected them to be quite as muddy as they were. What was intended to be a run with a bit of walking (up the hills) turned into a 50/50 run/walk!

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Having seen some wood anemones on a walk last weekend, I was hoping to find lots today up in the woods. Sadly, there were very few, but many areas were covered in young bluebells that will look amazing in a few weeks' time:

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This part of the woods will be carpeted in white and blue before too long...

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My wife took this photo of me, but I moved. It's still a wonderful bit of woodland though. ;)

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It was only the second time we'd been along this path. It was summer the last time and the stream was dry; today it was gurgling nicely:

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If you want to avoid other weekend walkers, these are the paths to take!

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We were both wearing non-waterproof trail shoes which meant that a fair amount of time was spent looking for the least muddy route...

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That pretty much covers the first half of the trek and the second was very much the same. It was great fun though!

We eventually arrived back at the start of the farm track:

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In finishing, I have to say once again how much in awe I am of my wife. Before we'd even set off on that 7.1 mile walk/run at about 9.30am, she'd already done a 4 mile run on the treadmill. I wouldn't dream of giving her age away, but she's having her jab tomorrow afternoon... ;)
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Two go trail running together!

Postby Gillzajoker » 21 Mar 2021 12:25

Great photos of the woods, Dave, but all that mud! Not for me, thank you.
Yes Fred is amazing................but being subtle about her age gives me food for thought,
as the are just doing the over 80s here at the moment!!!! :lol:
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Re: Two go trail running together!

Postby Camela » 22 Mar 2021 18:48

I often used to adjust my age slightly until everything became digitised and proof of age needed for just about everything!! Mr P does a lot of genealogy and family tracing for others and it's amazing what is available out there with a few clicks of the mouse. (Personally I hate it, only using what I need for my family tree).
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