Hi Charles...

It was that time of year again. Mrs B was making pointed comments about my lack of six pack and the girls were being particularly suggestive. Well Charles I thought we better get a team together for the Wooden Spoon 4 Peaks challenge again.... and this year make it a good one!

For those of you who have missed my exploits for the past few years this is a darn silly race that starts on a Thursday evening in the North of Scotland and, 14,000 feet of climbing and 1,900 miles of driving later finishes on the top of the highest peak in Ireland on Saturday morning.

At least this year I had the sense to drive rather than run up all those steep, wet and windy hills... Ross said that he was interested and Andy, that super tough Kiwi is always game.

The Four Peaks

Get some stickers on the car

First we needed a car. Those nice people from Vauxhall gave us a brand new Omega this year with black leather seats. Once we had covered it with stickers, filled the boot with smelly kit and spilled food and drink over the seats it began to feel like a normal car again.

What's more, our third team member John, Andy's little brother, kindly drove it up to Glasgow for us so that we three jet setters could fly.

Ben NevisWho brought the crampons?

Well the Ben did not look quite like this when we set off. However the weather was fine and the Kiwis went up like a rocket. Even snow near the summit didn't stop them and we completed in a very respectable 2hr 34min, in 4th place and only 8 seconds behind Penny Lane Striders, the third fastest team. Better cut down on those photo stops Ross.

Andy and John on the Ben

Ben Nevis from Fort William

So jump back into the car and off to the Lake District. We'll do it in 5 hours giving us a good 4 hours in bed before we have to get up again.

6am Friday morning and the car park is full already. Better get our skates on. This time the boys really shifted - up and down Scafell Pike in 1hr 39min and that path down is damn steep. Looks like the view from the top wasn't worth hanging around for though.

Wasdale campsite 5.45am Scafell Pike summit

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