The first 20 miles or so were a bit hilly, undulating more than monstrous, but I was out on my feet from about 3 miles in. I threw a few gels down but was just feeling completely empty, shuffling along trying not to think about having to climb Snowdon at mile 20.
When I hit the checkpoint at the start of the climb I felt pretty awful, even the gentle ascents were forcing me to walk or even sit down occasionally, and it only got worse from there. Climbing up the Pyg Trail in the pouring rain on dead legs was just grim – I was in a foul mood and just wanted it to be over, but the climb went on forever. In a few parts it was real hands and knees stuff, and the rain was relentless which meant clambering up some mini streams that had formed in a few places. I wasn’t really making any noticeable progress, and at one point I looked down at my watch and it said I was doing 45min/km, although I think overall for the 3 mile climb I averaged very slightly quicker than that.
Eventually I got to the top, and then the long bumpy descent which was slightly more fun, but I was still feeling totally exhausted. I finally crossed the line after 29.2 miles and 6:18 – just 12 mins before the cut-off, although they apparently extended that by about 3 hours.
Overall it was a great race, I just started it in a complete mess – I’d have struggled anywhere the way I felt, the mountain just made it even worse. In the sunshine and on fresh legs it’d be an amazing race – and it’s already on my provisional list for next year.