The Black Combe winter league is a series of 8 races intended to support winter training. There’s always a 10k road race in there and the finale is a dash up and down the Combe but most of the races follow low or mid-level off-road routes.
Tue 01

Dunnerdale Winterleague

11am on 01 January at Blacksmith's Arms, Broughton Mills, LA20 6AX

Sorry Dave, but we’re starting with a nice run this year. No flags, start and finish are outside the Blacksmiths and if that’s not open by the time we’ve finished, we can go to the Manor instead. To make the race more WL sized we will miss out Raven Crag and take the lower path straight to the stream crossing, but you do have to go up Stickle Pike. Sue is handicapping the Winterleague this year so get your pretend injuries ready in good time.

Sat 05

Appletreeworth Winterleague

10:30am on 05 January at The Hawk

From the Hawk as usual. Organised by Pete and if you like a proper warmup or want to lengthen your run, he’ll need help with flags.

Sat 12

Birkrigg Winterleague

10:30am on 12 January at Birkrigg Quarry

Starts at the bottom of the sledge ramp, near the Birkrigg crossroads. Two laps of the hill and the woods as usual, flagged all the way and finishing down the hill. Organised by Will and Sue and all are invited back to ours for tea and bacon buns after.

Sat 19

Blawith Winterleague

10:30am on 19 January at Crake Valley Layby

Organised by Hazel, with a slightly amended route so it’s a bit easier to follow and flag, and you get to go up Beacon twice. Start and finish are in the same place, by the parking area just above Blawith.

Sat 26

Roanhead Winterleague

10:30am on 26 January at Roanhead Car Park

Organised by Matt R so we might all go the right way this time. Sand dunes, long grass, strange marshy bits and the long run back up the beach to finish.

Sat 09

Scissors Winterleague

10:30am on 09 February at Blacksmith's Arms, Broughton Mills, LA20 6AX

There has to be a road race in the winter league and this is it: just over six nice hilly road miles, starting and finishing at the Blacksmiths. The route goes anticlockwise (unless Ian has other plans) so you head up the hill then turn left to take the top road back to the scissors crossroads. Straight over, down to the Hawk, up to Stephenson’s ground and back to Broughton Mills.

Sat 16

Tottlebank Winterleague

10:30am on 16 February at Giant's Grave

Organised by Julian: two laps of Tottlebank and Blawith Knott, starting and finishing at the Giant’s Grave. Always misty.

Sat 23

Black Combe Winterleague

10:30am on 23 February at Whicham Church

A straight race up and down the Combe from the road next to Whicham Church, then off to the Square Cafe for prize-giving. Organised by Will and I’m wondering about going to the South Summit too so that people can check their line for the fell race two weeks later. What do you think?

There is a competition for all with trophies being awarded to best man and best lady overall. It is four races to qualify. 1st person back scores 1 point, 2nd = 2 points, 3rd = 3 points and so on. Overall scores will be the sum of the lowest (best) 4.

Results are announced straight away in the forum and then eventually summarised here. The winners will be worked out over breakfast after the last race up Black Combe and the trophies given out at the club's Christmas dinner.

The league is handicapped and the races all have a chasing start, so anyone can win and everyone has to try. The handicaps are (loosely) based on your expected best performance at the start of the season.