Run Manbeast, run!

Manbeast has started taking his running a bit more seriously lately (as opposed to my permanently injured approach!) and been upping his miles. He decided to try an off-road marathon distance across Exmoor last month and … guessed it, Zephyr and I got roped in as support crew.

The idea was for him to meet up with some friends who were doing a longer distance, but due to lack of phone signal this didn’t happen and he ran it solo.

He started from Dulverton at 8am. We arrived the night before, so once he had set off Zeph and I had breakfast, packed up the van and headed to the first meeting point at Withypool. We had a bit of time to kill here (but not as much as I am used to when Manbeast is walking) so we went for a walk and splashed around in the river. Manbeast arrived on schedule, refilled his water, had a quick snack and energy gel and set off again.

Next stop was Simonsbath. I have so many memories of time spent here with our labradors, especially Hendrix when he was young. We didn’t wander too far from the van as Manbeast was making good time and wouldn’t be long. He was looking and feeling great when we saw him coming up the hill and we jogged with him to the van. Water refill and a chunk of cake and he was off again!

We drove to Combe Park for the next meet. Again, I have so  many happy memories of here with the labradors and it is right next to one of my favourite walks at Watersmeet. I had a coffee and settled down with a book in the van to wait for Manbeast, we had about an hour to kill. Manbeast was making good time and arrived here a bit earlier than planned, replenished his kit and set off to the finish point at Lynmouth.

The weather had been dry up until now, but started to rain at this point. Luckily there was only a few kilometers left to go.

We parked up at Lynmouth and got out for a leg stretch…. this is where my complete lack of direction became a problem. As we were wandering aimlessly around the town in one direction, Manbeast had arrived at the van and couldn’t find us, or get in the van as I had the keys. We had no mobile reception for him to call me either…oops! Eventually we bumped in to each other and to say he was a bit grumpy about this would be an understatement!

Anyhoo…once he had forgiven me, it was time for a quick chat with his friends, who finished about an hour earlier and we headed off to one of our favourite pubs for a coffee. Manbeast completed his off-road marathon in just under  5.5hours (including stops) which I think is pretty awesome!

We headed to another old haunt – The Red Barn in Woolacombe – to continue our reminiscing over a glass of wine/beer and then found a spot to park for the night so Manbeast could get some well earned rest.

The next morning was beautiful and we headed to Watersmeet so we could take Zephyr on what was our favourite walk with the labradors. We walked along the river to Rockford and then back along the other side and stopped at the National Trust coffee shop (for more coffee and cake) before heading home.

We spent so much time in Exmoor with Hendrix and Otis but haven’t really been back since the wolfdogs came along. This trip completely re-kindled my love for it.


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