Runners battle eight feet drifts

It takes more than a few feet of snow to prompt the intrepid runners from Calder Valley FR to put their feet up.

Friday, 29th March 2013, 3:00 pm
Calder Valley Fell Runners tackle Stoodley Pike

Last weekend’s wild weather forced the postponement of the races at Edale Skyline and Rivock Edge.

Calder Valley were due to be out in force at Edale, an English Championship counter, with the crack A team chomping at the bit.

However, the prospect of goofing around in eight foot snow drifts was not one to be passed up lightly.

So a group of 19 local runners and two dogs, corralled together at short notice by Robert Paradise, set out on Sunday morning from base camp at Mytholmroyd Community Centre car park, for an attempt on Stoodley Pike.

“We did nine miles in two hours, which is quite slow, but it was good fun,” said Paradise.

The runners were of differing abilities and stuck together for safety in unusual conditions.

Paradise, who works at the Halifax Boxing Acdemy at Holmfield and has been involved in that sport for 15 years, is used to putting his body through the mill. However, even he admitted conditions had been challenging.

“The snow was eight feet deep in places - we had to roll across because you couldn’t step through it,” he said.

“There was also a brutal crosswind which you could hardly stand up in.

“It was extreme but it was good - certainly one to remember for when I am an old man.”

Many of Sunday’s runners were staying in trim for this weekend’s Midgley Moor race.

Hosted by Booth Cricket Club, the route takes in a daunting uphill start onto the moor, then a sweep round to Dimmin Dale and toward Castle Carr ‘bottom lodge’.

After a pause for breath, there is a sharp climb back onto the moor before an eyeballs out descent back down to Dean House Lane.

Lashings of tea, coffee and cake will be laid on by Booth CC and Sunday’s race starts at 11.0, so locals are encouraged to race or spectate.