Marple parkrun #346

Huge thanks to Geoff Thorpe for our run report this week, and echoing his comment, massive thanks to the Volunteers today. If you fancy being a hi-vis Festive hero then please get in touch.

First Blast of Winter - 15/12/2018

Well, the thermometer may have been reporting a bracing 1˚C at 9 am., but the wind-chill of a brisk and biting south-easterly blowing across Brabyn's Park created a "feels like" factor several degrees colder. Menacing bobble-hats were notably well represented!

Add in a forecast of near Arctic conditions due to arrive not much later in the day, and it's perhaps unsurprising that numbers were lower than average, but even so a respectable 129 parkrunners made it to the start line. Some were still wearing shorts!!

Five of the hardy souls were making their first visit to Marple, including visitors from distant Derby and not-quite-so-distant Bramhall, and a special mention must go to one (Adam) making his very first parkrun!

By the flag we milled around, jumped up and down, flapped our arms etc. in an effort to keep warm during Jeremy's (thoughtfully brief) welcome before he sent us on our way.

The wind behind us wasn't quite so chilling, and had doubtless contributed to the, as yet, non-return of the notorious Marple mud. This meant that on the initial stretch we were able to focus our concentration on avoiding the frozen molehills!

Turning back into the teeth of it was a different matter of course, but the segment to "The Bench" isn't too long and then we could turn away again.

Thankfully almost all the other upwind parts of the course had shelter from the trees, and after passing the "River Drop" (special shout-out to Marshal Jenny whose encouragements, exhortations and warnings to "Watch out for icy patches!" could clearly be heard from the other side of the meadow!) the temperature actually seemed to rise a few degrees through the woodland. I even dared to shed my third layer at the halfway point and I don't think I was the only one. That fence looked more festooned than usual to me!

In addition to our five First-Timers, eleven Marple parkrunners registered new PBs today (including both our first man and first woman home), and congratulations to all of them, but congratulations also to all who participated, especially today's squad of volunteers. You must have been much colder standing around waiting for us than we were running, and, as always, we couldn't have done it without you!

Geoff.