Sue and Martin in Mallorca 2019

Sue and Martin in Mallorca 2019
On the Archduke's Path in Mallorca

Saturday 8 June 2024

Thursday 6 June 2024 - Around Timperley


The intention was to post a few photos from the RHS Bridgewater Gardens, but after passing a fine display of orchids beside the canal, our onward progress beyond Barton Lane was halted by a nail that decided to invade Sue's rear tyre.

She didn't have a spare inner tube, so I turned around and cycled home to collect the car, then return to pick up Sue and the bike by car, returning home via Ed's bike shop (Stamford Cycle Co) in Altrincham, where he sorted out the muddle of chain, tyre and inner tube. Thanks Ed.

That leaves me with just a few snaps taken from the canal towpath between Timperley and Stretford:

Later, a walk that incorporated De Quincey Park. Do you remember the picture of a fallen tree a couple of weeks ago. This is what remains of that tree - the mess was cleared within a day or two.

Thursday 6 June 2024

Wednesday 5 June 2024 - SWOG go to Hale Barns

Only three miles from home, but this walk took paths beside the River Bollin that we rarely visit, so thanks go to Helen and Harvey for devising this short evening route. Above, descending from beside Hale Golf Club.

Lots of woodland paths and Buttercup meadows.

Then a bit of unexpected rain.

Dryad's Saddle

Nearly back from various Bollin Valley paths

Here's the route - 6km with 100 metres ascent, taking an hour and a half before we adjourned to the nearby Bull's Head.

Wednesday 5 June 2024

1, 2, 3 June 2024 - a parkrun and Mike Dunne memorial 10km race

Wythenshawe parkrun number 571 took place in lovely weather.

We set off in deep grass cuttings, with only one patch of lingering mud near the end of each lap.

Paul has to start way back with Rufus, whose barking even then seems louder than the run director's briefing. He soon passes me.

The 260 runners had thinned out by the time we reached the football pitches.

Afterwards, a rare visit to the courtyard tearoom, which is closed having been abandoned by the council's operator (remember, the person who left prescriptive signs and didn't permit dogs indoors - so no great loss). The pony cafe and another outlet are providing refreshments outdoors for the time being.

Full results are here. (Sue was quick, I was slow.)

Sunday morning was warm and sunny for the Mike Dunne memorial 10km race. Mike died over a year ago and funds are still being raised for St Ann's Hospice, who looked after him, and an asbestos related cancer research charity. I was one of over 150 runners who turned up for the event. Sue had gone to visit her parents in Birmingham.

Again, I was near the back of the field, especially at the start.

I finished in an official chip time of 1:05:00, behind most of my 70 plus age group mates. Fechin took a picture for me. I finished in position 123 out of a field of 154.

Here are my splits according to Garmin, who reckon the course was 140 metres short of 10km, which would have added a minute to my time, given my finishing pace.

Back at home, this wood pigeon loves to wash, as do sparrows, robins, blackbirds and magpies. Their bath needs fresh water at frequent intervals.

A walk on 3 June to Altrincham found me admiring a giant specimen of bracket fungus in Stamford Park.

That's all for now. Domestic chores require no entries.

Tuesday 28 May 2024

Wednesday 22 May to 27 May 2024 - To Montrose and Beyond

Here's a rare back view of Simon's cottage, from which we departed on 22 May, after a most enjoyable stay, albeit with little contact with TGO Challengers, though later, Richard Flint was confirmed to have spotted me near Mar Lodge on 20 May. I had spotted a Challenger, but hadn't recognised Richard, who says the blue Skoda passed him in the same place as last year!

The Fife Arms has been smartened up to the extent that it is outside the average Challenger's means.

We visited our old friend Bill in Drumoak - that has become a habit - after a short break in Ballater, where the river was behaving itself.

The Garden Room at the Park Hotel in Montrose was busy with Challenge Control, and a finishers' refreshments area, together with a 'Challenge Voyeur', in full swing.

On Thursday I tried to track down seasoned Challenger Humphrey, who gave invaluable help in the publishing of Reg's autobiography. I didn't succeed, but I did enjoy a 17km ramble, starting at the Blue Door in Gannochy and enjoying the woodland walk past the Rocks of Solitude. Challengers were encountered, but none had seen Humphrey.

Here's my route, 17km with 130 metres ascent, much of it over farmland to the north of the forest walk. Humphrey must have gone along the road.

Dinner for Sue and me was a most satisfactory offering from Tesco.

Over 100 Challengers enjoyed a three course dinner at 'The Park'. Sue and I waited until the Friday meal - there are meals for Challengers from Tuesday to Friday for the reasonable price of £25.

On Friday the last finishers rolled in by 4:30, after which Sue and I managed a stroll to the beach and back.

Saturday morning found us joined by Ali, Mick and Gayle, for Montrose parkrun. The sea fret conveniently kept the temperature down to something acceptable.

After coffee and cake at the nearby strawberry farm, as well as some left over strawberry tart, we headed off on an easy drive home.

On Sunday I was in running kit again, joining 60 others for Wythenshawe Community Run on a fine morning.

Monday found Sue and me on a 5km stroll. Sadly, one of De Quincey park's old trees has come down.

The park is very lush. It would appear that a 'No Mow May' policy has been adopted.

Monday was a celebration of Michael's 40th birthday at Kate's house in Bacup. Isabella was in a shy mood, despite her pretty rainbow dress.

Then some of us went for a walk and played Rummikub.