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Thursday, 21 June 2012

Greensand Way Run Day 4 - Losing the Zebra Sleeping Bag, Pricks in our ears at 1000ft, a 850ft high doody, smacking, trig point planking and our First Fivesome

This was the final day of running of our four day run. There were more surprises in store too, including a few special surprise guest runners joining our group before lunch.....and one staying on for the rest of the whole run.

If you remember you left us 'sleeping' in our tents as the rain hammered down all night and the tents nearly washed away. I got about 30 minutes sleep. I got up in the morning very damp and we packed up our gear wet without caring as it was our last day.  I remember tweeting ' I feel so rested and energised and the weather is so nice I think Ill go for a little run'

We started off an hour earlier at 8am to buy us more rest time over the hilliest part of the Greensand Way. 

Dave had a zebra print sleeping bag that smelt like a badger had died in it. He wanted to throw it away (abandon it) in the woods to stop the smell and save weight.  Ive read Michael Crichton books and know what happens when you mess with nature so we convinced sherpa Dan to carry it until we could find a morally acceptable place to throw it away.

If you live in a house on the ascent to Leith Hill Tower near Snakes Hill and found a zebra print sleeping bag that smelt like a dead badger in your wheelie bin and wondered where it came That was us. 

Tillingbourne Water Fall. on the Greensand Way 
We ran past Tillingbourne Waterfall and began the slow steady 3 mile ascent towards Leith Hill Tower. It was raining and the visibility was very poor. This was dissapointing as we were about to run through the scenic hills of 'little switzerland' in low cloud with zero visibility.

Lee Claire Dan and Dave enjoying a coffee and breakfast at Leith Hill Tower  on the Greensand Way

We had some coffee and flapjacks for breakfast at Leith Hill Tower. On a good day you can see across to 17 counties from the Tower. When we were there we could barely see each other. 

Dave took the opportunity to do some acupunture on us in our ears. Claire has a few piercings in her ears , I have none. It helped re-centre my chukra and made my ears hot. 

Claire with Pins in ears on Leith Hill on the Greensand Way 

Lee having Acupuncture in his ears on Leith Hill on the Greensand Way  
We ran on over and down Leith Hill, We then climbed Holmbury Hill where I 'needed to go poop' . I disapeared into some bushes just off a path , got tangled in thorns with my leggings round my ankles and nearly fell down a slope. I chuckled as it occured to me I had had the highest Greensand Way doody at around 850ft up.
Dan in classic 'Greensand Way' pose on Pitch Hill
We got to Pitch Hill where Dan got the chance to pose for the classic Greensand Way 'Smack' bench picture (with no scenery due to the whiteout). He also got to do a trig point plank nearby......facing towards Fratton Bridge or 'true portsmouth magnetic'.

Dan Trig Point Planking on the Greensand Way at Pitch Hill
We ran down Pitch Hill ( I got us lost twice) and through Holmbury St Mary where we came across some interesting jubilee decorations in the form of baby tights on a line!

Jubilee baby tights in Holmbury St Mary on the Greensand Way 
Climbing up to Winterfold Heath we found we were very tired and running slower than expected. We were on a tight time schedule as we planned to meet friends at the White Horse at Hascombe at 1pm for a run to the Merry Harriers pub in Hambledon.

After some befuddled brain estimates we realised we had to really get our heads down and not take any breaks to get there on time. We slogged past Ewhurst Windmill where a walking event was taking place where people were walking 100 miles non stop and through the night. 

Running towards Graffham on the Greensand Way 
As we descended Winterfold heath I was really starting to flag again and the symptoms of low sodium were taking their toll again.  When we crossed the A281 I reckoned we were 15 minutes ahead of schedule so we took a well earned break where after eating some food and laying down felt a little bit better. We were all finding this part of the run very tough....except Dan....who never does.....ever.

We got to the White Horse about 15 minutes late. A packet of crisps made a real difference to how I felt ( a shot of salt to the system). A few of our friends were there to run with us for the 3 miles to the Merry Harriers and have lunch with us. Many of the guys were those that ran on the Easter Runday including my wife Dr G , Tim (of Greensand Way HQ fame) , Amerbob and Lydia. 

It was such a boost to have the guys with us. All my tiredness went away and the next 3 miles were really good fun. We got to the pub in high spirits and i had a massive lunch with loads of salt on my chips ( I mean loads) . Claires parents turned up as did the lovely guys from McAllister Thomas Fine Art Gallery. 

Meeting up and running with friends on the Greensand Way 
After lunch and on a whim our friend Lydia decided to run the next 12 miles with us all the way to the finish in Haslemere. This meant she would run a total of 15 miles with us that day. An amazing achievement.

Lydia continues the run with us from hambledon on the Greensand Way 
Famous Five on the Greensand Way at Hambledon
We ran through Hambledon and Witley and out towards Brook. We estimated we would get to The Swan pub to meet up with more friends around 8pm that evening. 

View from Hambledon on the Greensand Way looking out towards Black Down and our destination in the distance

Crossing the wide fields heading towards the A3 on the Greensand Way 

A Lee sized house in Hambledon on the Greensand Way 
We took our traditional break by the bridge under the A3  before gathering ourselves mentally for the long slow climb of Gibbet Hill overlooking the Devils Punchbowl.

Taking a break near Furzefield Wood on the Greensand Way 
The climb up Gibbett Hill was everything we knew it would be , long, tortuous and on very unsteady terrain. Over time Dan and Dave got well ahead of us . I knew that once we had cracked this summit the run was nearly over and it was basically just a 3 mile descent into Haslemere with very little more uphill. 

It wasnt a Race but Dan and Dave beat us to the top of Gibbett Hill on the Greensand Way

Having a celebratory 'sports drink' on the summit of Gibbet Hill. 

The Summit of Gibbett Hill was ace. The rain had backed off since lunch and we were awarded with views in most directions. Claire had brought little bottles of beer with us from her parents so we drank them to have a mini celebration at finishing the last big summit of the run. 

Lydia trig point planking on Gibbett Hill on the Greensand Way 

We also introduced Lydia to trig point planking which she was a natural at. The next few miles didn't take long in my head. Our feet had been wet all day and hurt a lot from a kind of runners trench foot which left my feet feeling raw and hot and painful. In no time at all we were in Haslemere running through the streets. As we got to the last passageway before Haslemere High Street we could hear our friends cheering us on. We got pictures and shared a bottle of champagne by the alleyway and the last Greensand Way sign.

Claire Dave Dan and Lee finishing running the whole 108 miles of the Greensand Way 
We had a meal in the Swan, I don't remember a huge amount about it. We were all in a great mood but very quickly I got very tired and just wanted to go home to bed.....................which I did.

Without having a shower.....I was too tired.

...................So that is the end of the days run.....the end of the Greensand Way run and the last blog post I will do for this blog.  I look back on the last 6 months with all the training with lots of smiles. We made lots of mistakes in training, laughed about them and blogged about them, learnt from them and achieved what we said we would do. We also beat the fundraising target of £4000 which I'm immensely proud of. We took great pictures, ran some amazing paths in training and all four of us earned our 'wings' as ultra long distance adventure runners. The run itself wasn't how I imagined it. It was different and more interesting because of it. 

Ive decided I wont be sad about not blogging here anymore. I'm going to continue blogging about my off road running ....and add to it my experiences as a pilot and diver too. 

I can 'feel' there will be other epic runs in the future. New paths, new challenges and maybe even new countries. 

Join me soon at

Wednesday, 20 June 2012

Greensand Way Run Day 3 - Gatecrashing the fair, on being a moving clothesline, More trig point planking, Getting a jacket at the Skimmington Castle,a four way 'smack' Running Sucks, and Rainageddon

You'll remember we left off with us camping at the Cricket Pavilion in Limpsfield. We woke up, avoided the sick , and started packing up our tents. I had washed my running gear in the toilets of the pub the night before and they hadn't dried overnight, mainly because it had been very damp and rainy all night.

A pair of vango banshee 200s cmaping on the cricket green at Limpsfield near the Greensand Way 

A smiling Olly turned up around 8.30 to mow the cricket 'thingy' (crease? lane? strip? doodad?). Much to everyones delight he also opened up the pavilion so we could have a cup of tea and a civilised wee. This really lifted our spirits despite not having any food for breakfast.

Dave Claire and Dan enjoying a cup of joe in the cricket pavilion  at Limpsfield near the Greensand Way 

We had nearly a mile diversion into Limpsfield itself to visit the delightful village shop run by its locals. We hit them hard for food, snacks and drinks for breakfast and the days running and got chatting to them while we ate breakfast outside on the bench. We even got more donations from people as we talked about our run. 

A quick break at the mill near Tandridge on the Greensand Way 

We got running again, Dave was finding his back pain was a bit worse so we lightened his pack , mainly by piling more gear onto Dan like a human buckaroo game. Still Dan wouldn't tire or slow down. We ran through Oxted and Tandridge and into Bletchingley. We could hear the M23 in the distance and it 'felt' like we were in Surrey. The scenery was great , lots of large fields and rolling hills. It was surprisingly good given how much running we had been doing. 

Lee, the human washing line on the Greensand Way 

To dry off my clothes that had been washed I tied them to the outside of my bag and so became a running washing line. The sun was out a bit but we were exposed to the wind a lot so I was running with 2 layers on. 

As we got near the crossing under the M23 we took a break on the site of an old Motte and Bailey Castle and took the chance to enjoy the view. 

Lee Claire Dave and Dan at the Motte and Bailey Castle site near the M23 on the Greensand Way 

Once under the M23 it was a steady run through much more built up Reigate and Redhill. With all the jubilee bunting out there was a real party atmosphere.

There was a large jubilee fair in Reigate Park and we ran onto the hill overlooking it and did some trig point planking that marked the fantastic views in all directions from the top of the sun drenched hill. 

Claire trig point planking on Reigate Heath on the Greensand Way 

Dan trig point planking on Reigate Heath on the Greensand Way

Dave trig point planking on Reigate Heath on the Greensand Way

Lee trig point planking on Reigate Heath on the Greensand Way

We ran over Reigate Heath and got the Skimmington Castle Pub around 2.30 pm at the 18 mile mark for todays run. We were quite tired at this point but met up with Claires parents who brought us loads of food (and then we got a load more at the pub too) and a new jacket for Claire to wear to replace her lost one (there was major rain forecast for later in the day)

The pub was great and very very friendly and even took pics of us to put on their facebook page. We were all having a really great day. Claires parents commented on how surprisingly upbeat and energised we were. 

Lunch at the Skimmington Castle on the Greensand Way 
We knew we had approximately 10 more miles to run that day and carried on to Brockham where we were in for a big surprise. We ran right through a massive Victorian Fair celebrating the Jubilee.  We got an ice lolly and wandered through the crowds dressed very differently from everyone else and even got our photo taken with a guy wearing a 'running sucks' t shirt. 

Brockham put a massive smile on all our faces as we ran on towards Dorking. Even as we ran up towards Deepdene Terrace we could still hear the live bands from Brockham. 

Us posing with the 'Running Sucks' t Shirt guy on the Greensand Way at Brockham 

We had a break and enjoyed the all round views from the top of Deepdene Terrace. 

Posing for a photo at Deepdene Terrace

As we descended into Dorking town centre we came across a bench overlooking a view and with the help of a delay timer and a tripod achieved a 4 way 'smack' (smile with your back). We doubt this will ever be beaten. For me this picture sums up our whole experience with the Greensand Way. It has everything. 

a 4 way 'smack' on the Greensand Way near Dorking. 

We ran steadily over the Nower and past the temple at the top. Down the other side and through Westcott. As we got near Westcott Heath we turned north off the Greensand Way and walked to the Wooton Hatch Pub where we planned to eat that evening.

The Wooton Hatch pub on the Greensand Way 

As very nicely dressed people smelling of roses and rainbows dined elegantly around us we sat in the corner having a 'pompey shower' (spraying ourselves and stuff with deodorant) and washed ourselves in the toilet. We had a pizza each and fought the nausea again and had a good hour or two enjoying just sitting while the phones recharged and the sun went down.

We made a decision to start an hour earlier than planned without telling anyone the next morning to make our run easier given it was the last day. The extra hour would give us more time to rest. We were in high spirits when we packed up to leave the pub and go set up camp near the Tillingbourne Waterfall.....and then as we looked outside .....It was hammering down with rain.....absolutely monsoon raining. 

Dan with waterproof headgear leaving the Wooton Hatch Pub on the Greensand Way 
We trudged in the wet and dark for about 15 minutes. We got soaked through . What I tought was thunder in the distance was actually jubilee fireworks. We set up our tents in the dark in the rain as quickly as we could and dived into the tents totally soaked.  Claire and I pitched our tent in exactly the same spot we had done when we did the Surrey training weekend. 

Once inside everything was wet, the bags, our clothes ...everything. We changed into some drier gear to sleep in and settled down to sleep despite the load noise of the rain falling. At one stage in the night the rain was so bad I thought about calling for help and maybe going home for the night.  I kept waking Claire up to ask if this amount of water was ok? in her guiding experience would we be ok? she told me to shut up and man up. 

Just like the last time I slept in that spot I got about 30 minutes sleep that night. It was going to be a tired and damp start to our last day of running. 

Sunday, 17 June 2012

Greensand Way Run Day 2 - Stingingnettlegeddon, Strawberrys, Erections, Fake Dog Poo , Pricks in the Ear and a new world record for the cost of a coke and chips, Cricket camping and a fishy chocolate sick.

If you remember we left off with us going to bed in the Scout Hut at Boughton Monchelsea. We woke up feeling not too stiff and tired around 8am and cooked up a storm of a breakfast of beans and toast and eggs and some amazing RAF ration pack food donated to us by a friend. 

We left the Scout Hut ahead of Schedule and ran the mile or so south back to meet up with the Greensand Way. Having run this stretch before I was very aware that this day could well be the toughest day running out of the four because the mileage was high at over 33 miles and we passed through the highest point in Kent right at the end of the day when we would be at our most tired.

Little Lee waits for the 'little' bus at the little bus stop in Linton on the Greensand Way 

We reached Linton quicker than I thought it would take us and we got a picture of me next to a super small bus stop sign. 

We ran on towards Yalding. This stretch is absolutely the most scenic of the Kent part. You are up on a ridge looking down across miles of flat countryside with oast houses and orchards and....yep...norman churches. 

The views between Linton and Yalding on the Greensand Way 

The terrain was different than when Claire and I last ran it as the crops had changed. More significantly the paths had become overgrown in places with stinging nettles. This was the day Claire was forced to wear shorts for running as her running leggings hadnt totally dried from their wash in the sink the night before. We therefore had 4 miles of 'Stingingnettlegeddon' with all of us ooh and aaah and ouching our way through the scenery. For the rest of the day our legs were all tingly and itchy. 

Strawberrys at Yalding on the Greensand Way 
At Yalding we bought some very tasty strawberrys from a local shop and took a 15 minute break by the River Beult before running frantically over the medieval bridge that is only wide enough for one lane of traffic (and little room for runners).

Taking a break by the River in Yalding on the Greensand Way 
We ran on through the marina and boats round the Canal and River Medway and on towards West Peckham. 

We had 2 major road crossings to do which were nice and dangerous (it wouldnt hurt for Kent County Council to put a small footbridge or tunnel in here) 

A huge erection at the pub in West Peckham on the Greensand Way

At West Peckham a landlord roped everyone except me into helping him put up and reposition a giant marquee that he had assembled the wrong way up and in the wrong place under an oak tree. Funny though it was I was quite tired and 'sugar grumpy' and found the whole thing a bit annoying when we were supposed to be getting 15 minutes of well needed rest. The other guys didnt mind and helped shift it into the right place with a smile while I videoed it and pointed out that the landlord could have just assembled it in the right place and the right way up in the first place and saved himself a load of hassle. I can be very diplomatic. 

On through Dunks Green we ran and I had originally decided for us to have lunch  there but we decided to push on and get more  mileage done before our lunchbreak. This meant eating at the the legendary 'Salty Coke pub' The Chaser Inn at Shipbourne.

Claire Lee Dave and Dan smiling with a mirror 'smirroring' near Shipbourne on the Greensand Way

By the time we got to Shipbourne we were roughly at the 16 mile stage for the day and I think we all needed the rest except Dan who just keeps running without any sign of tiredness. 

The Chaser Inn didn't dissapoint. Same old lacklustre service ina posh surrounding and two bowls of chips and two pints of coke for an earth shattering £15.50 (thats not a typo). It gave us a chance to charge our phones for an hour, Dave had some ear acupuncture to help his inner oonagie, and while Dan was in the toilet and popping his blisters outside we put a fake plastic dog poo inside his camelback water bladder so that he'd find it later that day.

Dave comes to terms with the prices at the Chaser Inn in Shipbourne on the Greensand Way  through meditation and Acupuncture

We set off after lunch making unsubtle gags to an unwitty Dan about 'poo' and being 'dog tired' and hopefully not a 'shitty run'. Dan continued up ahead running like someone out on a 3 mile sprint.

Igtham Mote on the Greensand Way 

This section of the Kent is where the scenery changes and things start getting more hilly.  We ran past Igtham Mote and on towards our first proper ascent of the run at One tree hill. This didnt give us the best of views despite the height because of the trees. 

Our 'Horse race' on Carters Hill

We had a brief horse race on Carters Hill as we crossed a showjumping training area before  running through Knowle Park and on towards Ide Hill.

When Claire and I ran the Kent training weekend it was around Ide Hill where I began to find running really tough.  My symptoms returned again in the same place. I was sweating hot and cold, confused and having trouble seeing properly with tunnelled vision and colours no longer being clear. 

Having spoken to a few medical people I've now subsequently come to understand that my symptoms (which were not made better with lots of sugar intake) were a sign of low sodium from sweating so much. The sports drinks for runners have electrolytes but not nearly enough for ultra marathon runners and I've now learnt that ultra marathon runners need up to 800mg of salt per hour once they've gone beyond standard marathon distance.

The result of low sodium is  crashing blood pressure and the symptoms I was experiencing. 

So there I was at Ide Hill Car Park, rain coming in from the distance, light starting to fade and feeling very very weird. Using every ounce of concentration on navigating and running. Claire suggested I eat some chocolate pretzels she had and I while reaching in to get them from her bag we realised that her new Greensand Way Jacket had fallen off her rucksack at some point in the last hour or so.  Her rucksack is the same capacity as mine but has a weird layout with its pouches and pockets which forces her to roll her jacket up and clip it on the outside.  To make things worse this was the moment it started raining....a lot.

I would say this for me was probably the lowest point of the run mentally. Claire left her rucksack in the carpark and did a short speed run back to go look for the jacket in case it had been lost recently. She didnt find it.

You'll notice there aren't many pictures for this bit of the blog. That's because the run now over Ide Hill, over Toys Hill and through French Street were absolute hell. I had the energy but felt like I was very close to passing out. Claire kept shovelling snacks into me without any change and Dan and Dave crept ahead as I slowed down. I was dizzy, could only just run in a straight line and very very befuddled in my head.

Toys Hill on the the Greensand Way 

I wanted to call it a day early and eat in the Fox and Hounds on Toys Hill around 7pm and tackle the other 5 miles the next day. Dave was keen to push on as was Dan. It turns out the decision to push on was the best one but it didnt feel like it at the time.

the half way mark at Goodley Stock on the Greensand Way 

Finally we got over Mariners hill and past Sir Winston Churchills house where I lost Claire briefly in the woods and we ran through The High Chart and Goodley Stock looking for a suitable place to pitch our tents after our pub meal.

I got us lost again in the woods not far from the pub and was really angry with myself as it risked us missing food at the pub. As I cursed loudly the rain carried on and the darkness came.

The Carpenters Arms in Limpsfield at the halfway point of the Greensand Way 

Our aim was to get to the border at Limpsfield and eat at the Carpenters Arms. They served food until 9pm and we got there with 5 minutes to spare. It was a busy Friday night full of 'normally' dressed people and in we walked looking like we had come off a thawing Everest.

We had a lovely welcome from the landlord. He was so helpful, Got us to a table where we could charge our phones and we sat down in shock to force down a meal which was great but none of us wanted to eat. Three of us felt nauseous and weird, Dan felt fine, just a bit tired.  We also had pints of coke and some recovery chocolate shakes. We also shovelled 'walky pills'. We were so tired that Dan finding a plastic dog poo in his water pouch got a slight smile. Thats all we had energy for. 

We were given donations from people in the pub who we got talking to and then Olly who looks after the cricket pitch and pavilion kindly offered to let us camp on the cricket green rather than track back a mile into the woods. It also meant he would be there in the morning to open up the pavilion for us for a wee and coffee. This was great news and really lifted our damp spirits.

The legendary Vango Banshee 200 on the cricket green at Limpsfield on the Greensand Way 
We got the tents up in the rain and quickly went to sleep around 10.30 pm. We were exhausted and all still felt unwell. One of us had rather a large chocolate/fishy sick just outside the door of one of our tents .............which was nice. 

Day 2 had been the longest days running. We had run through some beautiful scenery, left Kent behind and made it through some very testing physical and mental conditions. Secretly we all hoped day three wouldnt be as hard. 

I slept like a log all night despite the rain. 

I didnt know it yet but day three was going to be  the real surprise of the whole run. 

Sunday, 10 June 2012

Greensand Way Run Day 1 - Portaloos , 5 rucksacks for 4 runners, Blue Faces and 3 way Smoneboxing .

When you train and talk about something for so long its always a bit of a shock when it actually happens. Everything about the Thursday morning start to 'THE BIG RUN' was like preparing for a holiday, the frantic packing the night before, the not quite sleeping properly the night before from excitement, the early start, the long journey in a car the next morning. 

Dave , Dan, Claire and Lee at Platform 2 in Hamstreet Train Station at the start of the Greensand  Way 

Instead of finding ourselves at Gatwick Departures we found ourselves at Ham Street Station Thursday morning just after 9am on platform 2.  It was a little bit surreal. This was it. We said goodbye to Claires parents.

We started off ahead of schedule, the weather was ok for June. No rain and not too hot, about 20 celcius but with high humidity and not a lot of wind.  We handed over 'the con' to Tim at Greensand Way HQ who would run the Facebook and Twitter accounts and send out emails to radio and papers while we ran. He was looking at a 4 day marathon sprint of IT just like our running.

About a mile in we stopped to adjust our rucksacks and reconfigure a few things. It was then that I noticed that Dan was wearing 2 RUCKSACKS. His first rucksack had its own rucksack. He said he couldn't quite get all the gear in the first so he just brought 2. 

 I wear a lot of things to help me with my running, state of the art compression gear, the perfect trainers, KT Tape on my legs,  the perfect running rucksack , whilst Dan has an attitude to the adventure which is staggeringly impressive. He was wearing board shorts, a KT Tape top they kindly sent us, a load of borrowed kit and 2 Rucksacks. In the whole weekend of running he never moaned once. NOT ONCE. I've only ever really come across this level of stiff upper lip from people from the armed services.  He had trained in fashion trainers leading up to the run, not done a lot of training recently due to injuries he got and only really begrudginly bought some proper running trainers the week before the run because 'he felt he ought to'. 

Dan with 2 rucksacks on the greensand way near Ham Street

Each days running was planned into stages of between 3 and 7 mile stints between villages or weypoints. Due to the distance we had to keep to a time schedule or risk getting into our evening/ over night stops far too late. Our first stop at Kingsnorth was on schedule and we stopped to recharge our phones on a bulk portable battery pack I brought and eat some food and I put on some sunblock that was very blue and made me look like a smurf. We also listened to heavy rock music on daves phone and posed for KT Tape pictures we tweeted to them.....all in church graveyard.

Lee putting on blue sunscreen in Kingsnorth on the Greensand Way

From Kingsnorth we stopped following the Greensand Way north and started heading  north west towards Great Chart. When youve run the entire Kent stretch before a few months earlier you wonder whether the route will hold anything new for you.  It did. With the change in season all the Oil Seed Rape was gone, the fields looked much more full of crops and the terrain had changed. As we an through Godinton Park we were amused to find the entire field scattered with unused and clean portaloos.  Some members of our group took this as a welcome opportunity.

Claire uses the outdoor facilities at Godinton on the Greensand Way 

We were then also amused to find out that it had been set up for a scout camping weekend so as usual Claire had managed to find scouts on our run.

From there it was a continued run to the Hothfield Bogs which are a nature reserve. Dave and Dan don't like running through livestock so I was amused to see lots of horses and cows wondering freely about while we took another quick 15 minute break for phone charging and a drink and some food. 

Horses in the Hothfield Bogs on the Greensand Way

We now ran through Little Chart and our first few beautiful fruit orchards  and on towards Pluckley. Having run the route before and with a better phone navigation app we found the navigating much easier than before. Especially as we now knew the Kent rule of 'no sign just follow anything stuck, glued or painted yellow'.

Claire in an orchard near Pluckley on the Greensand Way

Our plan was to have a 1 hour break for lunch in Pluckley at the fantastic Black Horse Pub. It is the most haunted pub in Kent and also a location where the Darling Buds of May was filmed.

Just before we got there claire took an opportunity for some quick posing in a 'salad bowl' on a playground in a Dita von Tease style 

Claire does her 'Dita von Tease salad bowl tribute' on the Greensand Way 

Lunch at the Black Horse in Pluckley on the Greensand Way

After Pluckley you run through an area called Shipland which has the most amazing viewpoint looking down across the landscape towards an Oast House hotel at Elvey Farm. 

Dan running along the Viewpoint just west of Pluckley near Elvey Farm on the Greensand Way 

With a nice lunch inside us and a refuel of our camelbacks with water and ice cubes we were in high spirits again as we ran towards Egerton. We also ran through Liverton Street and shortly after we came across a bench with an amazing view and with the shout 'you know the drill boys' Dave and Dan got topless for some 'Smacking'

Dan and Dave do a 2 way 'smack' near East Sutton on the Greensand Way 

We ran past the young offenders Institute in East Sutton, through Sutton Valence at which point it was early evening and we were all finding it quite hard going. 

We stopped for a quick '3 way smonebox' near East Sutton.

Lee, Dave and Dan doing a 3 way 'Smonebox' or smiling with your phonebox.

It wasn't much further to Boughton Monchelsea where we were stopping for the night. We said hi to the goats in the sancturary and then turned north off the Greensand Way at home farm and headed north into the village.  

We were very tired and got to the village stores around 7pm and bought a load of food and drink for the evening meal and breakfast.

Arriving at the Scout Hut at Boughton Monchelsea on the Greensand Way 

We then walked to the Scout Hut at Boughton Monchelsea where we were staying for the night. 

Sports Food on the Greensand Way 

We cooked up a massive pan of pasta and sat round the table and ate it. We handwashed our clothes in the sink and put them up to dry and rolled out our thermarests for bed around 10pm. Put the phones on charge for the night and fell asleep.

We had another days tiring running ahead of us and what we didn't know then was the next day was going to be one of the hardest and trying days running any of us had ever done.