Introduction

The Joss Naylor Lakeland Challenge route leaves Pooley Bridge to traverse 30 summits over a distance of 48 miles and climbs 17,000 feet (77km, 5182m).

The inaugural run from Pooley Bridge to Wasdale was made by Joss Naylor in 1990, at the age of 54; in very bad weather with heavy rain and a strong SW wind Joss completed the run to Greendale Bridge in 11 hours and 30 minutes.

Chris Brasher offered engraved pewter tankards to the first 20 runners to do so with the proviso that they raised at least £100 for a charity of their own choice. In January 1997, with 17 tankards already awarded, Chris extended his sponsorship. In 2001, with 33 tankards awarded, Joss secured on-going sponsorship for the tankards.

The challenge is offered to fell runners over the age of 50 to complete the run in set times according to their age group. The challenge is intended to be a "supported run" for individuals - each contender is to be accompanied on every leg for safety reasons and unaccompanied attempts will not be recognised. There is more information on the Challenge Details page below.

If you are interested, please have a look at the Challenge Details, download a schedule or contact me using the "Email Ian Charters" form below.

Tuesday, 29 January 2019

Craig Stansfield (M50) - 02 June 2018


I’m always up for a challenge, so when I turned 50 the Joss Naylor Challenge was on the list for my 50th year.
The alarm went off at 5.15 am and we awoke at the kirkstone pass car park to thick clag. The nerves started. After a good feed we headed down to Pooley Bridge ready for a 7.00am start. I met up with Stu Stoddard and Steve Angus who were going to support me on leg 1.

After Lisa took the obligatory photos on the bridge we set off. Charlie and Joey joined us along with Steve's collie. We made good time up to Arthur's pike where we left Charlie and Joey. I’d got it into my head that I had to go quick on this leg and was already 5 minutes up at Loadpot. Realising that I may be going a little quick, Stu and Steve reeled me in and kept me to the 2.35 schedule. We were soon descending from Thornthwaite Beacon and climbing up to Stony Cove Pike. Dave Seargent met us in the clag and pointed out the trod to Pike Howe. We arrived at kirkstone a few minutes up. It was nice to see Dave Makin and Tony Shanley at the changeover with their encouraging words.



I filled myself with food and drink and tried to catch James Riley up who had set off up Red Screes just before me. I felt tired, probably because of the humidity. Catching James up we picked off another couple of tops and were soon descending Fairfield passing some Salomon clothed runners coming the other way. Time for some food and drink on the way up seat sandal and then our descent to Dunmail. We arrived at Dunmail soaked through with sweat from the humidity.
More food and drink. Including complan, coke and jam butties. Much encouragement from Lisa and Charlie and Mike Langrish, who it was nice to meet.


Jules Coleman was my support for legs 3&4. Off we went up Steel Fell, passing a group who were reccying the JNC and saying Hi. We pressed on over to High raise and over to Rossett Pike, passing a BG attempt on the way. Then came the bowfell climb. Always a tough one. I consumed another Gel and got my head down eventually reaching the summit. Jules was doing really well with the navigation in the clag. We were soon on great end. A tricky descent in the mist caused us to lose a few minutes, but we were soon at the Styhead stretcher box. Jason Craven was there to meet us with some more coke, water and food.
His encouraging words gave me a boost and after eating a satchet of baby rice we were on our way up Gable. Cramp was getting the better of my quads, so I stopped to take some pain killers and pushed on.
We were 7 minutes down on schedule at styhead, but Jules was confident I could make that back. We passed many BG attempts going the other way between Kirkfell and Steeple. Finally the clag started to lift as we got to Steeple and we had some lovely views. Just a few more tops left. Stu had given me a caffeine sweet on the first leg which I had saved for the Seatallan climb. I chewed it. It tasted awful, but give me a definite boost and we were soon at the top. One more climb which was over quickly as Jules and myself chatted about anything and everything. I can't explain the feeling on the last top. It was amazing. A very quick descent and we were at the bridge in Greendale. Where My awesome road support team Lisa and Charlie and Joey met us.
I managed to get round inside my schedule too 11.29.












Big thanks to my support crew. Jules, Stu, Steve, Dave, James, Jason. Who I couldn't have completed this challenge without. Most of all I’d like to thank Lisa, who’s support on these challenges is second to none. I couldn't do it without her. Thanks to Charlie who inspires me with his enthusiasm for fell running. Thanks to Joey the best dog in the world.

(all photos by Lisa Stansfield)

Friday, 11 January 2019

Dave Harrison (M55) - 05 May 2018



It's just gone 4am as I wander along the narrow lane. The valley air is filled with the growing dawn chorus and on either side sheep stir in dew covered fields. For the second time in as many days I watch as the dawn light seeps over the adjacent Lakeland hills and grows ever brighter. It's different though. Yesterday's dawn was soaked in anticipation, nerves and a need to deliver. Today's has a glow of satisfaction, the reminders of a great day in the hills, of a good job well done, of splits that were met, beaten, smashed and of a Shepherd’s Hand that was shook in the glorious sunshine of a May afternoon.



A day of great chat and many laughs and the only minor drama being when we cantered through Styhead with the resupply team still ten minutes down the valley (oops!) but the quick thinking and selfless legs of two supporters ensured that all was right by Black Sail. I could bore you with a pile of stats, of lines taken but it was simply a day when the hard work paid off, the legs sung, the gods smiled and with the help of some great friends a required sub 15 became a 12.22. A day to treasure in years to come. Thank you to all that made it possible.

Leg 1 (photo: Jules Coleman)



Approaching Greendale Bridge (photo:Paula Furnival)

With Joss (photo: Carol Morgan)


Greendale Bridge (photo: Paula Furnival)