This time, my monthly update concerns a special and unique event. Not the inaugural running of the Dalby Dash 10K in the woodlands of the North Yorkshire Moors, which undoubtedly merits a mention and recommendation of its very own, but the combination of this and the first official run of any distance of my sole supporter, team member and better half - Michelle.
After all the mornings of finding me away at dawn, having to wash up empty bowls of porridge and notes saying "Back at tea time" today was her first outing. The combination of 10K and off road request made the Dalby a perfect opportunity and it was taken with both hands, a great event in a part of the country that is much favoured and enjoyed throughout the year.
We kicked off at 11.02am following a well observed two minutes Rememberance Day silence and headed south down the road, under the cool, lingering autumn mists of these parts and away from the Forest Visitors Centre. Being sent on our way by a live band playing "Keep On Running"! was innovative and a first for me but the silence soon returned, only disturbed by the heavy breathing of runners effort, as we turned sharply eastwards up what turned out to be the only, but long drawn out, hill of the day. This section of smooth tarmac road made for easy progress but the incline had us gasping for air by the time the summit was crested. Soon passing early runners who needed a walk to get the second wind, we ran this section and got into a relaxed rhythm which was maintained for the whole race.
After this first third, we headed along a level section, dropping off the tarmac onto the tracks before turning back into the pine wooded, corridor like rocky incline and the long, long descent westwards back to the foot of the forest dale.
Not without event here: Michelle joined the illustrious predecessors of our house who specialise in falling down, promptly measuring her length on the muddy rocky track after a switch back left on a slippery section that was more mud than track!. Straight up again and appearing more determined, and now certainly travelling faster, we made it to the bottom and then the last kilometer followed a wide flat track return to the finish line along the straight bottom of the valley and the welcome finishing tape, picking three runners off which was the icing on the cake.
The aim of the day was to:
- Ideally not be placed last
and if both these worked out ...
Finish under one hour. - Delighted to say that all three were achieved and in some style!.
Many thanks as always must go to the organisers and marshalls for their help and support for a very enjoyable first time out. Must mention a great goodie bag: Excellent pair of Hilly Trail Socks with the logo "Dalby Dash 10K" on the heel, a very nice touch and discount voucher for Up and Running in York.
I feel this is a good trip out for anyone who fancies a change from road to trail. Very well organised in a beautiful part of the country and safely away from motor cars. Anything like me then ya never return to the road again, you just stick to the trails and go on a bit further! Probably not be doing it all alone for much longer ...