24th November 2015
After a week of wet, windy and dismal weather in which I managed to get out cycling twice for 30 miles+ and a 7 mile run the temperature plunged at the weekend, just in time as we were going to see our grandchildren, twin boys[TW] and granddaughter [GD]. I even managed to mow the front and back lawns on the Friday, taking advantage of the petrol mower my son had given me, the petrol ran out just as I was finishing the last cut, so there is an unfinished stripe! But it all looks tidier, even vacuuming the leaves up at the same time.
It was a beautiful morning drive up the M5 but somewhat busy even for a Saturday morning, there seemed to be a lot of ‘rubbish’ drivers who either stayed in the middle lane even though there was nothing for them to overtake or drivers who decided to pull out in front of you without signalling , making you take avoiding action, I am always amazes how there aren’t more accidents, this included a coach who pulled out at short notice without need and without signalling, so called ‘professional drivers’ !!!! rant over!
We had a lovely time visiting Barnwood Park in the sunshine, even if it was very cold with the stiff northerly breeze, the ducks and squirrels were keen on the nuts and seed GD had brought for them, not so in summer , when they couldn’t be bothered. The weekend ended all too soon, the TW are growing fast and can now recognise things, respond to movement etc. GD can now form letters, is ace on the ipad and has a very good imagination when we play at buses! Not bad at 3 years old.
Monday the weather stayed bright and as Mrs IanB was off to Yoga I decided to have a trip to Beer Head for a run. It was a beautiful morning, clear blue skies and chilly, but not too cold, but I did need hat and gloves to start with.
I was the only one in the car park as I lined the camper up for a nice view for coffee on my return.
Watch set I was off, a steady jog up to the old coast guard station on Beer Head, fabulous views spread out, the bay at Seaton looking very continental in the distance, the Isle of Portland was also clear today some 40 – 50 miles away. Strangely there were no dog walkers this morning, I headed over the top before descending to the pretty village of Branscombe, a steep descent, muddy and slippery in places, before a steep climb out of the valley up the other side to follow the coast path, I had to walk in places, but felt good, not sure whether it was psychological or not that kettlebells had helped ! on to the Fountains Inn, following a nice path down through the woods that are covered in wild garlic in spring along with blue bells. I had not seen anyone since leaving the car, that’s 5miles! Down through the village back through Branscombe before picking up the undercliff path back to Beer Head, here I met a group  walking along, they were surprised to see me running as I passed them, not quite sure that they were all younger than me!!! It was a lovely run along the singletrack to the bottom of the ‘stair way to Heaven’, memories flooded back on the 4 times I have climbed this on the Grizzly Cub run and will of course run it again next March on the big Grizzly.
It didn’t seem a bad climb and didn’t feel too bad at the top, I stopped half way to admire the view back towards Sidmouth, again remembering the time in April when I ran the 22 miles from Exmouth to Seaton, a hard route that I would like to do again. After the top of the St to H it was an easy mile run back to the carpark, mid-morning walkers now appearing with big coats, hats and gloves, but! No dogs, very strange! Back at the van it was 6.8 miles in an hour and 21 minutes pleased with that as it was a pleasant run and I felt good on finishing. A towel down and change of clothes [advantages of a van] before a nice mug of coffee and a maple syrup cereal bar listening to some nice music and gazing over the bay at Seaton and beyond, life couldn’t get much better!!
The weekend ahead gives me a number of options, a charity 35 mile cycle ride with the Gym I attend, a 100k Audax over Exeter way or the 10mile Bicton Blister multi terrain run, shame they are all on the same day as I would like to do them all we will see the weather nearer the day.