Tuesday rolled in, bringing with it more merk and drizzle. I needed a run longer than 3miles and having made use of the free wifi, I found a nice 10mile circular route starting and ending at Gillman point. When I woke it was dark, the nights seem longer here with sunrise somewhere around 8am.
I set off clothed in my new Montane Minimus and headed for the stairs of death. Climbing up I was a little faster than previous try, once up my torch struggled to light the way and at one point I could have swore there were two paths, in fact there was only one the other was the cliff edge no more than 5 ft away. With the sea blowing in a constant drizzle and fog visibility was reduced to around 2ft
probably not the brightest move, running along a cliff edge in dark, in mist and wind. I picked my way carefully through the sticky mud, stumbling like a drunk thankful my Asic’s full fell runners gripped. The dog occasionally looked back as if to ask ‘why did you bring me’ before tugging me off to find shelter. After a mile or so I had hit the start of the route between Gilman point and Ragwen point. A lovely little cove, I can see it being very busy in the summer but being off the beaten track I can see it more being very quiet and private, strange large concrete structures grew from the ground, mangled iron bars projected into odd contortions, I can only imagine they belong to ww2 defenses, ( later I found they were part of the D-day preparations and the large holes were caused by shell fire).
From here I ran a hard packed track through a small valley woodland towards The Green Bridge, in the early dawn light and mist the woods took on a rather scary persona with tree branches creating contorted shapes. I imagined being watched, most likely the Blair Witch waiting to chase me down (more likely just birds), once I had escaped the woods with my life I hit a main road, according to the OS map I should just cross the road and follow the footpath. The gate I spied was padlocked and I found this a little odd so I climbed it, then descended some steps to find I had gone down the wrong path and found myself at a large cave entrance under the road, I’ve struggled to find specific information about this, but have found some info that suggest it is part of a lager cave system that stretches to the start of my route, (please feel free to educate me as I am genuinely intrigued) I retraced my route and followed the road and finally found the path by chance. No signs on the road and another gate which declared private land, it was only by chance I caught the footpath sign a bit further on.
From here it was a trudge across fields, gratefully churned to a quagmire by cattle, I struggled to get a pace going as I dodged ruts and deep mud holes, again my stance was that of a drunk tumbling from pub to pub. A small wood signaled another gate before I was to hit a track and back towards a road. I was met by the largest cows I’ve ever seen, these seemed to be the famous Welsh black cows, staring me and the dog down, the three cows won and I decided against trying to pass them as fluffy as they looked im sure I would have been mercilessly chased down. Running back I found a hard track much to my amusement (why I never found this before), it was far easier than the no-mans land below and I was soon hitting the road again.
From here I carefully followed the road up towards Marros, by now my Asics had begun to hurt my heel and had rubbed the skin from me making running painful. Hitting Marros, I turned at the church and marveled at the most unusual war memorial, each stone weighing a whopping ton and dedicated to both the fallen and those that served and survived WW1
I decided against following the full route, my asics were now badly rubbing and so I followed a farm track past numerous houses which seemed out-of-place given the roads abandoned appearance, I headed towards Marros Beacon, unable to see the trig point in the adjoining field, I advised against an exploration fearing more fluffy man-eating cows and made my way down a switch back track and onto the Welsh Coast path I stopped momentarily, slipping a few leaves into my sock, makeshift plaster in situ the path then dragged me through a small woodland, through mud and slippy rocks before climbing up towards Chambered burial cairns. The wind and spray beat me continually for the next 1.5miles as I joined Ragwen Point and back the way I came. Hitting the steps of death I slowed to a crawl, trying to prevent the dog pulling me over and trying to stop my feet slipping on wet concrete. Overall I covered just over 7miles and 1500ft of elevation it was enough.
Id also noticed that a few other run 1000milers have run parts of this giving me some competition for the best time.