Day 10 – People, Places, Passes.

Day 10 – Sunday 28th July. Ambleside to Wasdale.

Despite a rather groggy start to the day of palpitations and cramps due to a spoonful too much of cereal (my body’s way of letting me know its tired), it has been another AMAZING day.

Jo Waites (a fell running rival from my faster days) joined me for the ride. We set off anticipating a soaking but someone was smiling at us and we stayed dry. Ben joined us for the start; but I think Jo and I scared him off, or maybe it was Hardknott Pass. I haven’t ridden over the passes for quite a while but with a bit of ‘heave hoing’ we made it.

I love riding in Cumbria, especially when it is quiet and you get glimpses through the dragon’s breath like clouds. At Wasdale we met Matt and Tess, and Tess hopped on her bike to pedal along the shores of Wasdale. Reaching a bridge, a child waved us down – Livi Towe and family (close family friends) – for hugs and greetings. Another reminder of how lucky we are to make this challenge, and my journey this last few years, possible with smiles and happy memories.

We arrived at our campsite in time for a walk, play, and to prepare for tomorrow – SCAFELL PIKE. Bring it on….

Click below for  little snippet from Tess.

Tess talking about the challenge

An honour and a privilege! – Post from a supporter.

An honour and a privilege – by Darren Fishwick, provider of a haven in Coppull, Chorley. 
‘Traditionally I’ll browse the Fell Runners Facebook page a couple of times a day. I wouldn’t say I’m a ‘nosey parker’ – I’m just inquisitively drawn towards the comings and goings within the sport I dearly embrace. Occasionally a ‘post’ really grabs my attention, one such ‘post’ being: Pedal to the Peaks.
Jane Reedy is a runner with whom I’d exchange a courteous wave of acknowledgement as it’s considered rude to acknowledge a lady be means of a nod – so my late grandad once told me. Like many runners within the Fell community, Jane was someone I knew slightly – an acquaintance. Unfortunately, in time I’d heard on the grapevine that Jane was poorly. It wasn’t until recently – after reading about Jane’s Pedal to the Peaks challenge that the true extent of her brave battles with various life changing encounters came to light. My wife Alison and I were blown away by this incredible lady’s story.
I’m certainly no cyclist: yeah I have a push-bike, I bought it via a cycle to work scheme at a reasonably discounted price. That was over five years ago and I’ve still never arrived at work pedal driven – all told I’ve been on my bike maybe half a dozen times since it was purchased. The stats don’t lie, I’m evidently not much of a cyclist – but I do live on route of Jane’s challenge.
Various texts were exchanged – the outcome of which had us playing host on two separate occasions to Jane, Matt and Tess…aka The Reedy’s.
It’s been an honour and a privilege for us to be a small cog in Pedal to the Peaks. I no longer class Jane as an acquaintance, I’m proud to now call Jane Reedy a friend…along with Matt and Tess.
The Reedy’s – truly wonderful.
All the best Darren and Alison Fishwick
Ps – Nellie’s been looking for Tess.’
Darren & Alison Fishwick's house.

Day 9 – To the Lakeland Fells

Day 9 Saturday 27th July. Chorley to Ambleside – To the Lakeland Fells- 70 miles.          (Total mileage to date about 690 miles).

It was a steady start as my legs and body were rebelling a bit, i saw some rather appealing looking sheds, and started to wonder about having a kip! However after 20-30 minutes I got my legs back.

Darren showed us the way out of Coppull, tearing along like an unexercised whippet, despite claiming to not being a cyclist. Paul Cornforth was my star lead out guy today, and I did pretty much sit on his wheel for 70 miles (apart from when my wearying legs wouldn’t play on the hills).

Passing Preston hospital again I dropped off a flyer with my blog details on. It is three years since I finished radiotherapy there. Thoughts of patients there today made me out my tired legs into perspective. I also called by the oncology unit at Lancaster; the staff there saw a lot of me as I was so ill with the chemo initially.

From then it was heads down up the A6 before heading off to my usual riding territory of the Lyth Valley, lakeland views and Cumbrian rain. I love living here and I am so lucky to have this on my doorstep. The last few miles I was met by Matt and Tess – these bits where Tess has joined me have been the BEST. This challenge is not about me, it is about my family and being able to share it with them is is special.

 

Life after cancer treatment.

As I had expected managing my eating and drinking is the hardest part of this challenge and a stark reminder that my body is not the same after cancer treatment. This goes for all the people I have spoken to who have had cancer.

Much as at times I crave to gorge on a large meal when I like, of whatever I fancy, I have to remember that I am lucky, and focus on what I can do, not on what I can’t.

 

Day 8 – Back to the Fishwick’s Sanctuary.

Day 8 – Friday 26th July. – Llanwrst to Coppull.  Reverse(ish) of day 5. 100+ miles (but no gadgets today to confirm).

Again it has been a day of parts (but not many pictures)…..

Part 1 – Cross country through Wales to Connell’s Quay (where I met with Matt and Tess). The roads were winding, rolling, hedges high and views plentiful. At times I plummeted down steep one lane roads to forgotten Welsh villages, all under the watchful eye of a buzzard – or was it a dragon in disguise?

Part 2 – Connell’s Quay to Birkenhead ferry. The first part of this I followed Matt and Tess on the tandem; Tess with her dress billowing under a Wheelbase top.

Part 3- Birkenhead to a lead back to Coppull with Darren.The scary part! I was fully ready to swallow the tracker if anything really bad happened but I didn’t need to- I just rode pretty fast and gripped my handlebars tightly. Darren & Alison tracked me down and I had a great lead back to the sanctuary of the Fishwick’s.

Today gave me a bit of thinking time – I thought about all the people who are going through cancer treatment; finished it; or are coming to terms with the after affects. I thought about their families and their journey’s, for what I am doing is nothing compared to them – I have chosen this challenge and I am loving it. Some people are going headlong into a total unchosen, and often unknown challenge. That is where Cancercare are so amazing – they can provide support where the NHS can not, which is so important for those who are alone or don’t have support networks or who are struggling. Cancer Research UK will hopefully help to find ways to keep improving treatments, cures and screening.