I’ve walked the Dark Peak for years in all sorts of weather but wasn’t prepared for the trial we underwent in a cruel five hours spent on the moor. Lightweight running gear, including waterproof body cover, hat and gloves are adequate and safe for the fell runner in the severest of conditions, providing you can keep running. And there was the problem, Black Hill consists of a bit of rock, a moderate amount of heather and tussocky grass but most of all a lot of bog, surrounded by bog with a bit of extra bog thrown in for good measure. Across this wild landscape lie few footpaths most notably the Pennine Way, which offers some slight easing of passage except when the eroded paths are full of ankle to knee deep snow. So it was that we struggled over 12 miles with barely being able to break into a trot, meanwhile the wind reached gale force and fired sharp hailstones at us.
We made it safely back to the car just before dark, it had truly been an ordeal and at times painful especially on our wet almost frozen feet. John lost feeling in both feet before the end; unfortunately for me I could still feel the pain in one of mine!