Ian Campbell of HBT came up with this gem of an idea. In memory of his dad and to raise some funds for, and awareness of, Prostate Cancer he would, over the course of 3 days, climb Allermuir in the Pentlands 29 times making an Everest of ascent. Thursday evening was a race, which we couldn't make. We followed Friday and Saturday on facebook as the team of supporters grew in numbers, and joined in today for the last 3 climbs.
We had gone along not sure what we would find and where exactly it was all based. Swanston car park, near the village of immaculately thatched cottages down off Oxgangs Road was the answer and just as we arrived so did the team coming down from the 26th ascent. A couple of minutes to regroup and we were off up the pleasant steep path directly up the mile-plus steady climb to the trig point.
Old friends and new, there was much chatting and laughing. With a small group of like-minded runners there is no shortage of conversation from racing to shoe choice. And Bruce came up the hill on one of his bikes. There was a lovely crossover of pals and acquaintances. Bruce we know from fat biking on the East Lothian beaches and he is Ian's brother-in-law hence his presence here. It was unusual to see him away from his natural habitat (the coast) and amongst runners not bikers. I realised I am also more used to seeing him in a bike helmet than out! We must organise some bike/run crossover adventures.
Maggie I bumped into at the end of last year while flouring the Leith Half course and although we had been on nodding terms we stopped long enough to talk, finding lots of common ground from arts to hearts, cycling and climbing.
Craig, Kate and Jess are ubiquitous and yet there was a time when Craig was just another fellow competitor at the Everest Marathon (2007) – appropriate for today and he was saying he should have brought along one of the ceremonial scarves picked up on that trip. Mary had exactly that thought but we forgot to look it out before leaving. We did however take the authentic Nepal cowbell from that trip and just about managed to make it heard on the final climb over the roar of the wind.
I took the camera and shot movies and stills. The wind overpowers any soundtrack but if I have time I might put it all together into a video. Meanwhile Bruce has been busy doing exactly that and has already posted his video.
Lots of chat about Stuc and the Fling and London Marathon and of races to come. Talking of which in a rash moment I signed up for the Tour of Fife this morning. Mary is not going so either I will find a way to travel myself or hitch a lift with someone travelling over. I couldn't just watch it sell out and not jump aboard. Whether I get there or not we shall see!
Bruce's film here
Ian's fundraising page (you can donate) here
Mary's blog here