…ok well maybe only one hundred…
Well I am glad to say that I managed it in a time of 33 hours and 59 minutes. I got to the last checkpoint at 7:20 (33 hours and 20 mins) with 3.2 miles to go over a hill and was wondering whether I would managed to finish in under 34 hours, I got in to the school at the end just as the church bell was chiming. =)
I was going to go for a Marvin like approach to this post (i.e. “The first twenty miles were the worst. The second twenty, they were the worst too. After that I went into a bit of a decline…”) but I changed my mind at about 80 miles round the route when I got into a checkpoint where they happened to be playing “I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles)” as I left and it stayed in my head for a while and I decided it would make a good title.
You can listen to the whole song on the Proclaimer’s site here (Track 4 under “The Best Of…”) although unfortunatley you have to have Real Player (or Windows Media Player Classic).
Anyway, onto the actual walk. I promise I will get photos up when they are developed (I wasn’t the one taking the photos) and I will then scan my certificate too.
The start was fairly easy and pretty fast, I did 8.12 miles in an hour and 50 minutes, ariving at the first checkpoint 10 minutes before they were allowed to let people through. From then on it got a bit slower although until the fourth check point at thirty miles it was reasonably fast going. After that the route went over Windy Gile among other bumps along the Cheviot ridge which slowed things down a little bit, however props to the mountain rescue who were on checkpoint duty there between 6 in the evening and 6 in the morning (on a bloody windy and cold ridge). I got down off the hills and into the next checkpoint just as it got dark and I spent a good twenty minutes there equiping myself with a torch and easting cheese pastys. Then we went up over a marilyn which my dad was very annoyed he had not yet been over and the Marshals walk skirted around (however he took some time to go up it as he was sweeping the route). It got light eventually and I got to my preakfast point which was great. Just after breakfast I slowed to a crawl but eventually sped up about five miles later just in time to avoid getting lost where the route description was rather vauge.
The 10th last to the 3rd last miles weren’t great as they were pretty much entirely on roads. =(
I did survive though and manage to do over 4 miles an hour at the end to get into the finish in a pretty good time.
My mum also drove around the route and walked along with me or some stretchs which was nice and gave me someone to talk to (though I talked to random other walkers that I happened to be walking by).
I was the only 18 year old to take part (the average entrant is about 50) although there were a couple of other guys below twenty (one of him had his 19th birthday two days beforehand).
Anyhow I’m glad its over and I’ve no idea how I got talked into doing something so stupid.