> 2008 race reports
23/08/08 Cheviots Challenge - from Phil Green

23 miles and 4600ft climb.

After a week of torrential rain, the forecast for Saturday was great.
The starting line up from NFR was: Paul Appleby, Peter Moralee, Peter Reed, Graham Wilkinson, Geoff Scott and a tardy Phil Green. There were around 200 walkers and runners for this popular and well organised event.

The short route circumnavigated Kidland Forest via Wether Cairn, Cushat Law and Bloodybush Edge and back via Clennel Street.

The long course was Wether Cairn, Cushat Law, Bloodybush Edge, Salter's Road, Kidland Forest, Border Ridge, Windy Gyle, Nettlehope Hill, Shillmoor via Copper Snout and back to Alwinton.

I turned up late, and teamed up with a soldier from Otterburn camp called Gary. We kept together right round making reasonable pace.
The good going up Clennel Street lulled us all into a false sense of security. Once headed up the open moor towards Wether Cairn, the ground became heavily water logged. This continued till Bloodybush. From then it improved after Salter’s Road and the trot through the forest was good. A stop for soup, care of the Search and Rescue guys hit the spot. Extra salt was greatly appreciated as it was a pleasantly warm day. This was just before heading up onto the Border Ridge and a left turn down the Pennine way to Windy Gyle. A quick chat to the marshals and a drink of juice then back over the border. A splendid long descent down to the Uswayford road via Ward Law was only slightly marred by missing a trod and adding half a mile of distance. The climb back to Nettlehope was steep but runable. The ridge run over Copper Snout and down to Shillmoor was very fast going, however the trot back over the very steep peth to Alwinton was not. A real sting in the tail which left me only capable of a slow trot back to Alwinton and a pint of shandy!
Geoff Scott, Paul Appleby and Peter Moralee were already sat with liquid refreshment in the Rose and Thistle, when I wandered in. I was shortly followed by Peter Reed.

Many thanks to Northumberland National Park Search and Rescue for a very well organised day.
Also to the Rose and Thistle for the hospitality afterwards.

Phil Green

more info about the Cheviots Challenge here

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