Yorkshire Three Peaks Challenge
Without a solitary thought about what I had put myself into, I agreed to do the ‘Yorkshire Three Peaks Challenge‘. Even within the time from accepting it to actually doing it, I never researched or prepared for it (except for a few gym sessions, which I attend every week anyway).
Me and the majority of Branded 3 had high hopes in completing this challenge. The aim for this event was to raise money for ‘Heart Research UK’. As a company our target was £2,000 and this would be a challenge on its own.
3.30am and my alarm screams for me to wake up. It’s Saturday 16 June and today is judgement day. Bit dramatic, but you’ll understand as the day went on. I’ve never been a morning person and probably never will be. I eat two scones with butter, which I never usually have for breakfast, just that the previous night had some urge to buy them.
After eventually gathering some sort of energy I have at 4.20am I get in my car with all my hiking gear and set off to pick up Fiona. As previously arranged, we had all agreed on meeting at 6.00am at the starting line, so I made sure we left at least an hour and a half before hand. As I managed to somehow forget the map and directions to the place, luckily enough I had Google Maps on my phone and we got there with no problems at all.
Pretty much everyone was already there at the time of our arrival. The weather was grim, but at least the rain was holding off. We each got our numbers, whistles and emergency blankets and was ready to set off.
If I remember correctly it was something on the lines of 6.45am we started to walk. Everyone was together, having chats and being all happy and merry. That was going to change! As it started to ascend more and more, we started to filter out due to different walking speeds. It was very busy with all the other hundreds of walkers who had started at the same time and became more of a race to some people than others.
As we walk higher and higher I end up walking with Jackson and Dave who seem to be at the front of our group. Either the clouds are low or we have walked pretty high at this point, but it only felt like half an hour into the walk.
It becomes quite clear that we are in fact at the front of our group leading the way to the top! A hand full of runners go past us and I’m just shocked to had even considered with our boss Vin, that we would run down the mountains. These guys who are running the whole thing are mad!
Not only was there runners, but quite a few dogs in the walk. They were loving it! Running up and down constantly. Where does all their energy come from? They had another 12 hours at max! Wonder how they got on?
Up in the clouds we go! To the right of us is a sheer drop but all you can see is a few metres ahead.
Didn’t take too long to reach the first peak ‘Pen-y-ghent’, which made me feel like we could do the whole walk in 3 hours! This is me MrBenopolis So hopes were high, but maybe too high, as the next part of the journey became the worst.
As we make our way out of the clouds, the heavens open up and lash down with its mighty rain! This is where I realised it was going to get tough!
It was quite slippery on the walk down, I nearly had my moments on my arse, but Dave wins the medal for arse to the ground! Jackson was still plodding away as if this was a walk in the park.
As there was a few hundred people ahead of us; the so called ‘track’ we were following was just becoming a bog of mud. People were getting stuck and falling over. It was hilarious! Haha.
Not even half way through the walk and me feet are soaking! Damn you!!
Lucky enough we have Jackson to lead the way. But in all honesty, there is a line of people who look like they know where they are going so we’ll just follow them!
Somewhere in the horizon is the next peak…no that’s a lie. But at the time, I just hoped that it was.
It’s a good thing I was with these two guys. Never seen either of them sad or unhappy, just always smiling even when the weather is rubbish and we have hours to go of none stop walking.
Still can’t see the next peak. The rain keeps lashing it down then stopping, then raining again. Not a good moral booster.
Finally something to appreciate. Jacksons fact of the day ‘This bridge is the most photographed bridge in England’, or the UK. I can’t really remember, but carried on taking photos.
Don’t I look happy. That lasted at least 40 seconds till I realised what we was there for.
Finally some form of road to walk on!
Jackson decides that his bladder is at full capacity and needs to release pressure. so where else better than behind a massive bridge! OK Jackson it’s not that big!
At this time we managed to get to the second Peak and start our journey upwards! In the distance I think it’s Ingleborough?
First time all day that we could see the blue sky. This gave a bit of confidence and stopped raining!
This peak Whernside, was harder in different ways than others. It was a gradual incline, rather than it being steep. So this was quite hard on us.
Somewhere in that valley is where we walked from. But what I do know is that it’s miles away!
nearly there guys, not too far now.
Finally reach peak number 2 at Whernside and we still have miles left to go. I get the chance to change my socks, as it was like having a pint of water swirling around in my shoes.
Our bones are starting to ache. My knees and ankles are the worst and I’m walking down this nearly vertical path of ridged stones and rock. One small mistake and you’d be rolling down the hill.
This has to be the best part of the walk. The sun came out and we was walking on a nice flat solid path. Up ahead you can see the final peak.
Our game plan was not to stop, or if we did, then make it quick. Otherwise we’d only feel worse after it.
This cheered us up until I realised I had no money. We all knew we couldn’t stop and have a pint, even though it would of been perfect. They also had a sign that said ‘come in and see our amazing salt collection’ or something mad like that.
You can’t really see it but again this is nearly vertical. We had to use our hands and climb up some parts.
OK the actual peak bit was next to this but people was in the way so this will have to do. I didn’t take any more photos after this as I got into a mood and just wanted to go home. We still had 9 miles or something stupid left and my knees and ankles were on fire with pain. walking down this peak and towards the finish seemed the longest part of the walk. It actually made me hate it! But without the support of my team Jackson and Dave I might not of been able to do it. So I thank you.
9 hours and 15 mins (roughly) we come to the end!
Being greeted by an applause made it all the better. A sense of achievement and worthwhile. Once pasted the finish line and gave in my number I sat down on the grass and took off my shoes. This was heaven. I had been waiting for this for ages. We had been the first from our team to arrive so I got in my car and fell asleep for an hour. Once woken, the rest of our team arrive in small groups . Not all teh Branded 3 team made it over the whole 3 peaks, but at least they tried and that’s more than not trying at all!
Well done to everyone that took part and I hope the money we all raised helped out Heart Research UK.
You all deserve a pat on the back.
It took me 4 days to recover from the aches and pains…