Looe 10 miler...hillish and hellish to say the least!
The Looe 10 Miler. Probably the most brutal 10 miler on tarmac in this part of the world, taking in the steep hills around Looe and Talland. A fine drizzle did little to dampen the spirits on the start line, with the exciting prospect of the Looe hills ahead. The fast flat start doesn't last long, before runners start to climb out of Looe onto the hill to the west of the village, before crossing a little grassy field. A few undulations later straight into a ferocious headwind and you're descending down a convex slope, very steep at the base, back down to sea level at Talland Bay. The slightly depressing thought at this stage is the realisation that you will have to run back up that hill on the return leg. Runners then head inland along a little lane through the trees before starting a brutal ascent up a little tarmac track to the top of the next hill.Then, finally, a section of flatter running awaits, with fine views out to the stormy sea as you head back southward then descend steeply back to sea level at Talland Bay. There's no time to waste on the views though, as you're straight back into the longest hill of the race, back up to the highest point above Looe. The hill is brutal and relentless, but when finally at the top, the last 1.5-2 miles are largely downhill back to Looe. A really tough race which takes a lot out of you. Not sure if I'll be back next year!