'Quite Good Fun' at Ten Tors
After four months of training in heavy rain, thick mist, stinging hail and high winds, Dartmoor did what it does so well – change! The bogs were still there, the streams still high but the sun was beating down on the Tors. When we trained two weekends ago Dartmoor received more rain in two days than it normally does in a month, but for the event there were only a few fluffy clouds in the sky.
The CCF and Lyon House teams set off on Saturday at 7am with a spring in their step after the firing of the artillery guns and fly past of three Naval helicopters. They reached their first tor in excellent time and kept their pace up throughout the day.
12 or so hours later they had covered about 25 miles and both teams had reached their 8th tor, the furthest allowed on the first day of the event. This in itself is an impressive effort when you aren’t walking on paths but across tussock and bogs, carrying all you need for 36 hours – ready for every eventuality – including the rain. They were certainly grateful that they were expected to carry sun cream but perhaps less impressed by the two microfleeces and one thick fleece that the rules state they had to carry!
After crawling into their tents having had a hot meal they slept well (or as well as can be expected) and woke early, ready for the final push. The CCF team continued their excellent progress and ate up the remaining miles to reach the finish at an incredible 10:35. This was a fantastic effort and yet they looked surprisingly fresh, with one member of the team commenting “that was actually quite good fun” and then after a short pause adding “but I’m never doing it again!”.
The Lyon team had some nasty final tors and still had 6.5 miles to go after their 10th tor, to reach the finish. They made it across the line at 13:17, looking less fresh perhaps but certainly just as delighted to have completed the challenge and beaten Dartmoor, when on previous weekends it had appeared to have beaten them.
All 12 boys involved did extremely well to get themselves round their routes, but what was even more impressive was the way that they came together as teams over the last four months of training. I know some of the boys would say that they couldn’t have done it without the rest of the team to get them through the low points.
Well done to them all!
CCF 35 mile team
Lyon House 35 mile team
Masters: Nick Scorer, Simon Tremewan and Robin Backhouse
Posted: Tuesday, May 15, 2012