(56 miles in the glorious Peak District!)
The first full weekend in September

Starts on the first Saturday in September and is organised by the 3rd Hazel Grove Scout Group affiliated to the Long Distance Walkers' Association (LDWA) - Click to enter the Group's site


Course record for the ‘new’ Bullock Smithy route fell to James Scott-Buccleuch of Stockport Harriers in a superb time of 8 hours 46 minutes beating Andy Trigg’s time from 10 years ago by 9 minutes. First home by more than an hour the months of training and route reconnaissance paid dividends. To complete a double for James and the Harriers Neil Thompson (9.47) and Steve Jones (9.56) broke the team record to take the Windgather Trophy and end Macclesfield Harriers winning streak of the past twelve years. James was first through all checkpoints, arriving too early for soup at Millers Dale and too early altogether for checkpoint staff at Whitely Green and catering staff at the finish. We will be ready for you next year.

Of the 251 entrants there were 228 starters who faced the starting anvil in Devonshire Park. To commemorate the 25th anniversary of Beaver Scouting the anvil was struck by Brenda Marsh, the first Beaver leader from 3rd Hazel Grove, ably assisted by three 7 year old Beaver Scouts. Brenda then dashed off to Millers Dale to put the soup on, which may partially explain why James had to forego his.

Despite the forecast for a wet late afternoon and evening the weather held out pretty well or at least until around 2.30am when the early finishers would have been thankful that they weren’t still plodding up to Brand Top although it was still a surprisingly warm and humid day and night. No chance of any moonlight assistance this year though. Congratulations to the 157 finishers and to the 71 who didn’t complete for whatever reason we hope you will give it another go next year. Our sincere sympathies go to Jane Hewitt, who took a nasty and very painful fall almost outside the checkpoint at Millers Dale, breaking her jaw in two places. Thanks to nurse and cub leader Claire Jarvis who was on hand to administer first aid and accompany her back to ‘work’ at Stepping Hill. We hope you are on the mend Jane.

Registration at the start HQ went fully computerized this year and apart from a short glitch for 15 minutes speeded up the signing in process no end. Thanks to Scout Leader Pete Attwood for all his hard work in getting this operational and working through the night each year on hike control updating all the finishing times as people hobble in. In recognition of this Pete presented the trophies on Sunday morning.

Other notable prizewinners apart from the Stockport Harriers trio were Philomena Smith who took the Chinley Trophy for fastest lady in a time of 12.23. Going quicker each year and completing a hat trick of victories in the Scout competition, Gavin Oliver and Chris Thackeray from Gordano Fellowship in Somerset took the Shining Tor trophy in a time of 14.47 and Sam Humphrey from Bullock Smithy Explorer Unit was the fastest scout from Hazel Grove in a time of 15.45.

My thanks, as always, to all the checkpoint staff and to everybody who helped in whatever capacity to keep this fantastic event going for another successful year. You will also no doubt be aware that we now have an on-line entry facility through the website at which has made life a lot easier for event secretary Jan and proved most successful. Please use this facility if you feel the urge to enter for next year’s event.

We hope to see you all again next year. If the thought of entering is still too painful then we are always grateful for any help on the day.

Steve Holt

Next year's event will be held on its earliest possible date of 1st/2nd September 2012.

..... and the verdict of the participants.......

"Just to thank all the organisers, marshals and other helpers for another enjoyable hike. The rain was not as bad as expected, the refreshments on route very welcome, and the meal at the end was just what was needed. With thanks,"
Roger Wilson

"Hi, Thank you to all of the organisers and helpers for a lovely Event."
Elaine Helme

"I just wanted to let you know what a fantastic event the Bullock Smithy Hike was. The organisation was excellent, and everyone I met was very friendly and supportive.
Overall it was the most enjoyable run I’ve ever taken part in - I hope to be back next year, as long as I have time to fit the training in! Thanks again,"
Dougie Robinson