Carol Morgan's turn on the Wainwrights this week. She's moving very well by the looks of things.
15.5 hours to Fellbarrow puts her about 2 hours behind John Kelly.
I was musing today will the Wainwrights become a thing people do, rather than a record that people attempt? If so will it have a notional time limit people aim for? A week is a very satisfying target, but is it attainable by more than a handful of people? Or, in a generations time will it have dozens of completions every year under a week?
My sister, 62 years young, took several months. Almost completed the Corbetts now. I enjoy dot watching and reliving the stretches I have walked myself, when folk are on a tracked round.
Following John Kelly's recent achievement, I would not be surprised if the interest moves on to a different record and list of mountains for a time. There will always be people looking to beat records and indeed breaking them. But however driven some one is there needs to be a carrot in sight. Make the carrot too difficult to reach and offer an suitable alternate and most will take the alternate.
Did you ever listen to Sabrina Verjee being interviewed by Simon Armitage? I think it was a BBC4 radio blog. A refreshing insight into her attitude, and I imagine the attitude of most who may have the capability for a challenge like the Wainwrights. Well worth a listen.
Its much more a personal challenge than anything to do with vainglorious achievement. Quite humbling
Dotwatching Carol has been my first experience of the dotwatching pastime, and I'm hooked. Especially as yesterday and today she's been traversing fells which I visited quite recently so I could re-live the experience and wonder about the route she chooses to take, and breathe a sigh of relief when she stops for a rest at a checkpoint. I know about John Kelly's and Sabrina Verjee's times, but I've no idea if, more than three days in, if she's anywhere near a record time.
I also find myself wondering things like "Did she climb the wall on top of Shipman Knotts to reach the true summit, or did she touch the cairn and move on?" (And no, it doesn't matter!)
Just to say Carol did climb the wall and head over the short distance to the true Wainwright summit at Shipman Knotts as she had been told to by a Wainwrights' obsessive on her crew before leaving Kentmere . There were a few other point where she did multiple tops on a hill just to stop any arguments afterwards.
What an amazing thing to watch that was. The weather from Monday afternoon to Friday was pretty bad in many places. How she got out of the camper van at both Hardknott and the next night at Kirkstone Pass into gales and rain I have no idea.
I don't think there are more than a handful of people who can do it in less than 7 days. Apart from the fitness and resilience required to keep going for a week at the pace needed to finish, the logistics of getting support to the changeovers and out onto the hill is way beyond the kind of "casual" level of doing a Bob Graham which can be pulled together pretty easily. I think doing it solo or with minimal support would make a sub-7 day competion pretty hard.