FKT: Samantha Borrett - Yorkshire Three Peaks (United Kingdom) - 2021-12-22

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Total time
7h 12m 19s
GPS track(s)

In my prep for The Spine Sprint race in January I wanted to practice with my full weight kit on a hilly route that I could do unsupported and this loop was perfect. I used running poles and my pack weighed 10.5kg and contained all the equipment, food and water required for the spine race. I parked in the Horton in Ribblesdale official Yorkshire dales car park (£5 for the whole day) and started off early just before sunrise. Soon after starting, I made a small nav error but quickly realised I was the wrong side of the river! I thought this run would be good practice for wearing my full kit bag and a good recce of the Yorkshire three peaks route, I look forward to doing it again (when warmer!) and not making so many small, silly mistakes. The route is fairly obvious all the way round (and mainly paved with flagstones) but I found that in a few places the FKT GPX route differed slightly from the Y3P fingerposts on the ground, only ever small deviations and the alternative footpaths were in sight of the GPX so I don't think there is any advantage between the two, perhaps an updated route to account for foot traffic through farm land etc. 

Pen-y-ghent was my first peak, nice and simple (I was glad I had to scramble up, an icy decent would not have been fun) but then the gap between Pen-y-ghent and Whernside was long and demoralising. My pace definitely dropped off and I felt a bit low. Going up Whernside was a long, slow climb but with beautiful views; Going past the viaduct was awesome. The gap between Whernside and Ingleborough was much smaller but the weather took a turn for the worst and the rain set in, my morale dipped again because I was tired and cold by this point; I should have eaten a lot more as I went round but I hadn't and I paid the price. the stone steps up Ingleborough were icy slabs so progress was slow and careful, the top plateau was ankle rocking rocky and the decent back to Horton in Ribblesdale was slippy, slidey mud - my least favourite peak of the three in every way. 

Even though it is slower than the supported and self supported, I was really chuffed with my unsupported time considering the weight I was carrying and it being my first time on the route. Definitely something to aim for an improvement in, in the future.