September 1, 2017
Thanks to Mitch for the following report, and Jackie for the accompanying photos:
Cilcain is a small picturesque village in Flintshire, North Wales, 17 miles west of Chester and 114 miles from Coventry.This fell run is the highlight of their annual August Bank Holiday show and has been held every year since 1960. This year the Red Arrows Display Team flew past to mark the start of the show. The race itself is a real treat! Essentially you run to the top of the Moel Famau mountain which sits above the village of Cilcain, then back down again via part of the Offa’s Dyke Path: 7.54 kms/4.63 miles of picturesque hill trails, beautiful countryside and stunning views. You start by the village church and run about 3⁄4 mile out on a single track road, then downhill to start with through trees, to where the path up the mountain commences. Climbing steadily, the stony trail zig-zags its way up the hill through resplendent purple heather - far too steep to run, too narrow to overtake. This is followed by an even steeper rocky section, through a gate and onto the summit plateau. At the top (1820 feet) you arrive at the Jubilee Tower, at which you turn, before following a grassy footpath to the left - the Offa’s Dyke Path no less! Keeping the wall on your left you run down for about a mile along a grassy path before turning off right and along a downhill, overgrown vehicle track. Eventually you come to the original single track road and the sting in the tail - the half-mile climb back into the village, before completing the course back at the church. Our time: 01:06:24 Our positions: 143th & 144th Our mile splits: 1st mile 11:25, 2nd mile 22:21, 3rd mile 15:56, 4th mile 10:32, last half mile 9:51, average 14:21. However, this race was not about performance; it was just a pleasure to take part in such a picturesque, yet gruelling, event and it is already on the Race Calendar for 2018.