Rivington Pike Crowds and Windy Reservoir Loops

The training is going well and the weather has been generally kind to us with no extremes to speak of except a bit of wind (more on that later). We didn’t get to do any biking on my ‘rest’ week due to one thing or another although I did manage to get the almost compulsory parkrun in on the Saturday morning.

The next long run started once more at White Coppice Cricket Ground but this time the weather was decidedly damp, the sort of weather where you’re not sure if it’s misty or raining so as the run was going to be fairly long and a slower pace I ran with my coat on, not something I particularly like doing but better than being soaking wet for a couple of hours. We both set off at the same time, Wendy doing a loop of 9 miles incorporating some big hills and me setting of once more down the side of Anglezarke Reservoir towards Rivington.

pigeon-tower-rivington

This time my route took me up Sheep House Lane to the car park and continuing to the Pigeon Tower and Rivington Pike up a steep, very rocky, trail. Getting to the top and heading down a little from the Pigeon Tower, I was surprised to see through the mist vendors selling burgers, coffee, balloons, all sorts of things you’d usually associate with a fairground and then as if in some kind of horror movie, people started appearing coming up to the Pike from the Rivington side, apparently a Good Friday tradition. I was more than happy to leave the well trodden path and head up to the radio mast on Top of Winter Hill.

A fantastic mile long downhill stretch where the trail was like a stream led into Belmont where I joined the Whitton Weavers Way bridal path heading north then cutting back west over Great Hill and back down to White Coppice to be met by Wendy and the news that the café was open and serving bacon and egg butties, job done.

A mid week trail with the SRC Chorley gang and a bit of cycling and it was soon weekend again for a surprisingly speedy parkrun.

Curry Leaf cottage burscough

After a fantastic meal at the Curry Leaf Cottage Indian Restaurant in Burscough on Saturday night I was expecting to wake for our Sunday run feeling a bit rough but we’d been sensible, not over indulged food wise and only had one drink each so we felt fine. This progression run was going to be a bit different as usually I keep my shorter runs local as it’s a bit overkill to head to the hills for speed sessions when I can do loops round the river from my front door but Wendy wanted another go at the previous weeks loop but the other way round to get in more hills so I planned a different loop for myself.

Once more we set off together but this time I stayed with Wendy and used the stretch from White Coppice along the Goit to Watermans Cottage as a warm up then did a moderately paced run round Aglezarke Reservoir (about 4 miles). The weather was a bit misty but the wind was horrid, going down the western edge of the reservoir I was running into the wind and it was even hard work at an easy pace. Coming back though was a breeze (sorry). Just before I started my second loop I met a couple of guys on Mountain bikes who were interested in my routes as they also ran so I used the stop as a good excuse to grab a bite to eat while we chatted.

I’d warmed up by now so I packed my coat away as I’d worn it as wind protection and headed out once more round the reservoir, this time at a slightly faster pace. I think a couple of groups of walkers must have though me a bit mad as I ran past them for the second time. The wind seemed a lot worse this time round, probably because I was going faster but it did make the return leg through the woodland and back up the Goit to White Coppice a lot of fun. It’s lovely to run with the wind at your back, especially in such beautiful countryside.

white-coppice-cricket-ground

Back at White Coppice I’d beaten Wendy this time, not surprising since I was doing a speedier session of a similar distance and she was going up a fairly major hill, so it was my turn to supply the bacon butties and tea.

A couple of great runs, both of us doing slightly different things but starting and finishing almost together.

Trail Marathon Wales 2015 – Training Plan
Amended 17th April

W/end Miles (km) Activity Route
Mar 8 12 (19.2) Local loop to Hesketh Outmarsh x 2
Mar 15 6 progression 3m local loop x 2 plus .5m cool down
Mar 21 14 (22.4) 14 done, the Rivvy half marathon route plus extra up to the pigeon tower White Coppice to Rivington
Mar 28 Rest or bike Rest, naff weather
Apr 4 16 (25.6) 16 done, Rivington Pike, Winter Hill and Great Hill 3 Hills
Apr 11 8 (12.8) progression 10 done, 1m warm up, 2 x 4m loop round Anglezarke, 1m cooldown Round Anglezarke Resi
Apr 18 18 (28.8)
Apr 25 Rest or bike
May 2 20 (32)
May 9 10 (16) progression
May 16 22 (35.2)
May 23 Rest or bike
May 30 24 (38.4)
Jun 6 12 (19.2)
Jun 13 8 (12.8)
Jun 20 Race
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