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The Connoisseurs Mountain Marathon

LAMM 2005 FEEDBACK

Martin,

Very many thanks for a fantastic experience. Seamless organisation throughout, and a big thanks to the helpers. The logistics were an absolute marvel: being picked up on time at Glasgow airport then getting on the ferry with minutes to spare really added to the sense of pressure we were under. This continued all weekend - there was no time to sit back and relax because on Day 1 we had to make the coach to the start, we had to get to mid-camp, we had to get an early start on Day 2 and we simply had to catch the 3pm ferry. This all increased the sense of constantly mounting inner crisis that was hard to overcome, and made the weekend a truly memorable one. There were only minutes to spare on many occasions. Friends of mine finished at 2.10pm and were on the 2.20pm train for the 3pm ferry and used their "flight priority" tickets to get on board. This was not merely a race that took part on two separate days but a seamless event with constant pressure that increased inexorably as the 3pm drop-dead ferry time approached. Many teams abandoned the courses and ran for the event centre and the ferry: I was in one of them. So I'll be back next year - I have unfinished business. For my first MM, it was tough, bloody tough, and my feet are in a terrible state. But how brilliant was it? Bloody brilliant. Highlands 2006? Bring it on.

And on a much less serious note: is there an easy way to make the slit trench less appalling? Perhaps one-person "cubicles"? I mean, one doesn't know the etiquette: when someone is already in place on the trench, does one squat in front or behind them? And if one squats in front of them, does one present one's face, or one's behind? And if two are facing each other, is it polite to strike up conversation?
Martin Brice


Martin
Thanks of course for another superb weekend. Enjoyed Friday's bonfire (on Saturday morning, when it kept the midges at bay while we studied themaps).

Fran suggested Mull from the gluhwein hint weeks ago but I said she was reading too much into it and it couldn't be Mull because you'd had it there already. Was she smug?

I'm sure that having the masses start during the Sunday chasing start, pulled people along as suggested. It meant that later chasing starters (like us) were also pulled along, getting a flattering result on the
Sunday. Regarding getting inadvertent help from those ahead, it was noticeable from reading the winners comments that they tended to arrive on Saturday morning: was this a tactical decision to ensure a late start time? I have to admit we play a similar game by hanging back after coach disembarkation to ensure a good view of the options being taken. I remember the good-old-days when a random pre-allocated start-time meant just that! (only joking)

Thanks again & see you next year, regards
Fran & Dave Wright


Hi Martin,
Thank you for putting on such a well organised event - it was superb. Photo 18 is of Mark Robson & David Henderson who came 2nd on the C Course,
Kind regards,
Mark Robson


Martin

Prize winners photo 16 is Andy Airey & Simon Noble (5th in C). Thanks for putting on yet another tremendous event...Simon and I particularly liked the 20m visability since it slowed down all the racing snakes and allowed the fell runners with the fuller figure (and an ability to navigate!) to come into their own! More of the same next year please!

Thanks again
Andy Airey


Dear Martin/LAMM people,

Thank you for organising this years race. Despite not managing to finish, (again!) I had a fantastic weekend. However, I left my walking poles behind after I got to the event centre (somewhere near the finish). They are black Tisos ones. Do you have a lost property pile somewhere that you could check for
me? I know it is a long shot, but I borrowed them from a friend, so I am obliged to try and find them before buying her a new set! I'd be v. grateful if you could have a little look for me. Otherwise, I hope the weather is nice for the packing up stage and I look forward to my annual LAMM failing efforts next year!

yours,
Rosie Fisher


Hello there,

This being my first marathon I found the going more tough than I expected (D course) and didn't manage to complete day 2. I do want to thank you for the wonderful organisation. everything worked like clock-work. The planning was good and the execution flawless with the bonus of the organising team being relaxed and friendly. Many thanks for a memorable weekend.
Zigi Fibert


Hi Martin,

I just wanted to let you know how much I enjoyed the LAMM last weekend. It was my first mountain marathon and I will definitely be doing it again next year. I thought the organisation was superb, and the quality and interest of the courses was excellent. I have been involved in the organisation of quite a few orienteering events so I appreciate how much hard work you have put in to organise such a brilliant event. Thanks again, and see you next year.
Alistair Bryan-Jones


Hi Martin

The Isle of Mull event was my first LAMM and also my first Mountain Marathon!

My team-mate and I were impressed not just by the organization but by what good value the LAMM is. Thirty quid each hardly covers the return ferry trip, train ride, bus journey, two camp sites, curry, cake and tea that were a part of this years LAMM.

I would love to try this event again next year; Target = chasing start

I was surprised that your photographer did not take bigger advantage of the facility to upload photographs to the website. The galleries from previous years gave me a feel for the event and an idea of what kit the competitors wore.

Perhaps you could display the results in a more user friendly format on the website? Friends checking the website that did not fully understand the concept of the event could not work out what was going on!

This event really exceeded my expectations!

Kind regards
Tim Young + Russell Shellard


Hi,

I had a great weekend and thanks for that. I though the B course was a better challenge than usual in terms of navigation and route choice (though we didn’t always make the right one!

I was pleased to just make the 8:30 ferry over as luck would have it but if I had missed it by stopping for 5 minutes longer on the motorway, I wouldn’t have been happy.

I do the event with the intention of having a tough but enjoyable weekend. Last year, I was so tired after the drive up that I was determined to get there earlier this year and to not be completely b#llocksed before the event started so I booked time off and set out earlier. If I had still missed the ferry and ended up not getting to Mull until 11:30 and then being lucky to be in bed before 12:30….I cant politely tell you what my comments would have been.

I understand that you don’t want to disclose the location til the last minute but, there could have been a comment saying….If you aren’t here by 8pm, you wont be in bed before midnight. From the web site it appears that you disclosed the ferry times around about Friday lunchtime. I was already on the road by then. After I checked the location on Thursday lunchtime, there was nothing to indicate that I should check back for further details, even if I had had the opportunity to do so.

It’s a great event and I want to always leave it feeling as buoyed up as I do today. Surely telling us the ferry times on Thursday lunchtime would not have spoilt the surprise and would have ensured that fewer people had a “nasty surprise”

Thanks
Becky Harrison


Hi, a Big Thanks for all the work that went into the weekend.

Although we retired day 1 with a lack of skin on heels and juice in legs we were pleased we got to the D check 9 and had covered a lot of the remaining distance before we decided on Dry Clothes, Big Tent and
Thermarests for the night! We hope to be back next year, better prepared...

Since we retired to the event centre rather than the midway campsite our checkpoint times weren't posted on Saturday. Would it be possible to get our times for what we did get done?

Again, many thanks for a great weekend, which left us most impressed with the organisation and attention to detail. Great stuff!

regards, Pete Clinch and Roos


Quick note to thank you and your co-helpers for making the weekend memorable. I know I'll never forget the midges in the trenches first thing on the second day.

Thanks again
Rob Coles



Hello Martin and Angela,

This was my first MM and I'm hooked!! LAMM 2005 was fantastically well-organised and I enjoyed myself so much, even despite (because of?) the clag. The event atmosphere was so friendly, especially at the mid-camp.

I'd just like to thank everyone who organised it and all the marshals for a brilliant experience - I can't think of anything you could have done better. (Mind you, I'd like a word with whoever put THAT hill in the way on C class day 2!)

Thank you very much. I'll definitely be back next year!
Ginny Carter


Martin,
Photo 14 is Matt Eckman and Adrian Spencer. Thanks for a great weekend. I cant believe its 10 years since I helped out at the last mull event (with a broken ankle). It was good to see some of the island this time though, even if it was only a 50km by 50m strip! Hope the clear up is going well and I'll look forward to next years event.
Adrian Spencer


Whilst I'm here really enjoyed it this year Martin thanks for Mull out of 4 LAMM's never had an island before despite being virtually last in D section and having long days many times in bogs caused by poor balance when crossing them. Steam train fab, Piper what was the music ? Latrines the best yet keep them narrow! Hope to compete next year again work commitments permitting

Thanks to all your staff, Wilf's and to yourself
Penny Moreton BCR Course D


Dear Martin

first, a big thank you for a totally inspiring experience - our first MM and we are addicted. We heeded the advice on the website, entered the novice category and were thrilled to come 4th and feel suitably challenged.

Just one thing though... we went along to the prizegiving and it was great to applaud the winners... and a little disappointing not to be rewarded/acknowledged in the same way as the other categories - being 4th and the 1st female pair - I had read that there would be no prizes for the novice category but being novices does not mean we are not competitive!!

I think it would encourage more people to do the novice category if it were seen to be the same as other categories in terms of competition and reward.

Not wanting to sound like sour grapes though as we had a fantastic experience and are already looking at what to do next. The organisation was impressive too - a big thanks.

Emma Tebbutt


Martin,

thanks to you and your team for organising another great event - only my second LAMM. Thought the D was pretty tough compared to KIMM offerings and evident by the high number of DNS and MP's on our
course but still, we enjoyed ourselves and managed to finish 15th. I was taking pics most of the way round - http://www.mjhughes.co.uk/gallery/. Not sure if there's any there worth entering in your competition but I'll have a think.

Cheers
Mike Hughes


Martin Stone,

I enjoyed this weekends event very much, was my second year of competing, I have sent a couple of photographs taken at the halfway camp, thought they were a bit different, my partner showed me his pencil from his essential kit list, typically cut down to size for saving weight.

I do have a query, however, I was on the homeward straight and heading for the last 2 checkpoints of the second day(C class), the mixed team next to me did not both go to the checkpoints, just the guy, who was running way ahead of the woman in order to do the "dibbing" to save time and meant that she didnt have to run the full distance and could cut across the field thereby shortening the distance covered. I wondered if this was allowed.

It obviously saves them time but is hugely frustrating and demoralising for the other teams who both actually make the effort to go to all checkpoints together and see other teams do this, thereby getting ahead and gaining places over them in the last few hundred yards. The only way this could be avoided would be for both team members to wear dibbers or to have all checkpoints manned.

I also wondered why there was no prize awarded to the first mixed vets, why make this a named category if it isn`t recognised in the prize list. Also, the other people I ran with came in 9th position, very good for a male vet team but no prize for them either although they were the first ones of their category to come in. The two men who did get awarded the male vet prize could have been given a super vet category so that the first male vets to cross the line after 2 days of extreme effort were awarded some recognition for their efforts.

Hope you find my coments useful,

Lorna Masterton (Team 636 mixed vet)


Martin,

Thanks for a fantastic weekend - we really enjoyed ourselves. Thanks also for the cloud, which gave us a chance to navigate, and for all the little extras! I can guess how hard it must be to organise!

Lewis and Jane Grundy


Hi there Martin

Just to thank you for the organisation of the LAMM. My first and hopefully not my last. Photo 25 is me and Mike Robinson. First Mixed in the B and 4th overall. Can we down load the photo or do we have to purchase it through you?

I have to admit my navigation on day 2 was really poor, but much more exciting than a local fell race were others have local knowledge and reckie it!!! The surprise factor is fantastic!!!!!

My only suggestion is that perhaps some sand or lime for your environmentally sound trenches would be a great idea. I have used a lot of dry loos in NZ and they all had lime/sand if i recall. Just a thought.....

Hopefully see you next year...and thanks to you and all the other organisers once again.

Anna Forrest


Hi Martin

Another outstanding success!

21 years on since my 1st MM, I am slightly older, slowing down and recently beset by a series of injuries which reduced my training. Yet, while slow I did manage to complete the A with my new younger partner.

It was long and tough, but then what else can we expect from the A class! Uniquely, on the southern doughnut I had to ask a competitor where I was at his control, I had previously noticed that in 3 paces my compass had rotated 180’, thereafter having already lost touch with the contour detail it became hard to find control 7 and it took rather a long time, a good challenge.

Attached are 2 small images, just to get you going! I took around 250 mostly good photos on a 4Mpixel camera. Some may be of interest to you (not the ones of us lounging on our deck chairs by a loch) and rather than email I would be happy to mail you a CDROM, could you let me know your mailing address?

Thanks for a great weekend, full of interest, a great atmosphere and plenty of challenge

Cheers Stewart Bondi


Martin & all his helpers (you included) deserve a massive pat on the back and big thanks for an amazing job of logistics. Not quite sure how it all comes together but it was excellent. Thoroughly enjoyed it,
roll on next year.
Andy Birnie


Thanks very much for another adventure! This was my 5th LAMM and we will be back next year for sure. The event is a 'special event' to me, not just a mountain race as others eg. KIMM, the whole atmosphere is different, more friendly and personal , almost a big family affair, which I love. It's tough! Better mountain terrain allowing mountaineering experience and navigation to play major roles and not simply a run. Long may it continue and once again thank you to everyone who had clearly put in huge amounts of time to make the LAMM what it is, "The connoisseurs mountain marathon".

Best regards Harry Rouse


Martin

Could you give a special mention to Sue Lane and her husband.

Some of us first-timers bit off a bit more than we could chew and got lost on Laggan Deer Forest. We then wandered back down the mountain side in a bit of a sorry state. Sue & her husband at Laggan Farm had been watching the day unfold through a telescope.

They picked up me and my partner plus 3 other groups (1 Elite, 1 A & 1 C) in their Land Rover, took us back to their farm, gave us hot drinks & food and then took us back to the Event Centre. The also informed the Mountain Rescue man of the where abouts of another Elite group that looked a bit rough.

They have restored my faith in mankind. I didn't realise kind people like that existed. Apparently Sue's husband used to take part in the event many year age before his knees went.

Thank you for the event. I will definitely take part next year, but downgrade to a D or Novice and brush up on my navigation skills!. Sue details are below. I would be grateful if you could give them a special
mention.

Robin Buxton


Hi Martin,

Very impressed with the high standard of organisation this weekend - from our point of view everything flowed smoothly, so congratulations for a superb event. Only drawback to the sting was not getting our heads down till 1.30am, which left us a bit below par on Saturday morning (the bagpiper should get danger money), but worth it to be in such a special place.

Regards the course, the donut section was a killer & really showed up our navigational weaknesses: a wake up call to improve our game for day 2. Didn't think I would hear myself say this, but we will be back next year & may even try a harder course!

Best regards, Dan Calverley


Hi Martin,

As someone who covers the ground quite slowly I feel compelled to ask why the C (and D) courses were so long. I really don't think people who choose to enter those courses expect such distances - so much more than "usual".

We made it to 9 on Day 1 (C course) but missed out 10 and 11 and, because we had a plane to catch, chose to abandon Day 2 rather than risk delaying us and our friends from getting back in time. Friends doing the D missed their flight as they didn't get to the finish in time to get the right ferry sailing - which was primarily an issue of the logistics of a ferry crossing, but again a reflection of the longer than expected distances.

I would be very interested in an explanation from the planner as to why he felt compelled to make the C and D courses so long - aren't winning times around 4 hours on Day 1 not 6 the more usual.

Ah well, you asked for feedback and I hope this will be useful.

Regards,Haydn Leaker


Sir,
I am writing a short note to say thank you and a huge thanks to everyone involved (wilfs/compass point/the marshalls/etc) for a memorable event, we,team 24, had an enjoyable Lamm despite the mixed conditions and the midges,and we greatly appreciate the effort involved.
See you in 2006
Regards
Paul Hooper and Sean Murphy


Martin - thank you for organising such an event - the complexity of it must rank aside that of Jura - getting people to the start will have been a major headache for both yourself and the competitors (missing the last ferry was a thought we did not entertain esp as we had flown in from Madrid early afternoon!)
A couple of things - we did note people running in shoes that looked suspiciously like training shoes or low grip trail shoes. I know that you keep saying that only fell running shoes are allowed and are allowing trail shoes but a quick spot check as people register on the friday night might encourage people to wear the proper footware - we were wearing the adidas fell shoes and kept on slipping even though my partner and I rarely were able to get into more than a dog trot! My big gripe is those competitors who 'cheat' - we saw this manifest itself in several forms
a) running in big packs of people and so relying on others to do the navigation for them. When we retired on sunday some people followed us down the hill for a bit!!! Comments like 'where is the control' or shouts of 'has anyone found the control' as they wandered around in the mist. Obviously this can be countered by carefully laying out the controls on close but similar features
b) leaving partner and rucksack to run back and dip the missed control are really not on and should be actively discouraged
c) punching in at the finish before your partner has arrived.

Some of these you cannot control while the competitors are out running but when it comes down to the fundementals of doing such an event as the LAMM there is the deeper reward of finishing and then the mental pleasure of finishing a place or 10 better on the second day. It is a bit annoying to then find that the person who finished in front of you 'cheated' in some form or another. Perhaps you should have a few more marshals out on the course to ensure that people follow the spirit of the event. Not sure that allowing the chasing start and mass start to mix. I realise that you had to get everyone back to catch the ferry but it did rather remove the element of the chase as people could follow the leaders and rely
on the leaders skills to pull them around. Also people who are in the chasing start must be in the start, rather than start when they want to. If people want to do that then they should get the time that they delayed added on to their time!

My congratulations to the course setter - I have done many of the previous LAMMs and been able to navigate around the course without too much difficulty; the combined effects of the mist and complex terrain meant my partner and I had to spend much more time on the navigation and less on the
running. Consequently we did well on saturday (C10). Please can we have a course next year that is of a similar standard of navigation complexity - it was really good fun and orienteering by committee (discussions between Rosemary my partner and I were frequent) was a good way of getting around
the course.

Finally when we retired on sunday due to a badly sprained ankle and knee, back at the event centre tent once we dipped to finish, we noted that there was a time at the bottom of the slip of paper that read 4hrs 7mins - is that the forecasted time that we would have taken? - just interested for reference.

Once the stiffness has subsided a bit, it is back to the hills for a bit of munro bagging and running and to find another partner of similar standard in preparation for next year - I have been thro' 3 in 4years! but will avoid partnering Scuz Wingrove!!

All the best Gordon Scott


Thanks for a great event- liked the novelty of the trip to Mull- ferry, trains and coaches all added to the puzzle of the w/e- Did not like the novelty of the saturday night toilets!
Kate Simpson


Great weekend and excellent organisation.

Thanks a lot, Tim Newton


Thanks for a great event - the organisation was singuarly impressive and the level of challenge was just right.

This was our first LAMM (D catergory) and despite not finishing day two on the basis of not being able to find the first check point (wimps!!!) we were left with a feeling of 'try to do better next time' rather than
disapointment or frustration at the organisers for making things 'too hard'. My partner and I discussed the idea of having time penalties for missing checkpoints - make it hefty say two hours - Although this might undermine the challenge (I would only recommend it for the Novice level and D catergories) it might encourage more people to complete the course and get more out of the event? I appreciate it would make route planning even more difficult for the organisers even more difficult as participants could plan
their own routes tactically in an attempt to make the time penalty work to their advantage.

Just one other small point that has nothing to do with the organisers but rather a small minority of the participants. We were kept up on the first night until 0100 hours by one pair that insisted on talking and laughing loudly (one of them was definately part hyena !!!) until this time. As a result and despite telling said pair to shut up several times we only got four hours sleep. Would it be worth putting something in the event instructions that participants should respect others right to sleep and to have a minimum noise rule after a certain time. I take it that these two weren't plants designed to add sleep deprevation to the list of challenges!!!

Anyway, thanks again for a great event. Paul Farrar


Dear Martin and Team,
Thank you again for organising such a good event. My first LAMM, and not - I expect - my last. Getting to Mull was great, although getting around the island was a little tougher. But having heard that the first 3 in any class are forced to move up, I'm frankly relieved by our placing.

In terms of feedback, I have only a couple of suggestions. It would be great to have the checkpoints printed onto the maps. I know this is more expensive, but writing them on - particularly with laminated maps - was a frustrating job and I don't really see it as a particularly key skill! I'd happily pay. Some sand by the slit trench toilet would also be quite nice if possible. Other than that, I thought it was great. Only the midges got me down. That and the navigational cock-ups...
All the best, Patrick Wallace


Dear Martin and the team of helpers

Many, many thanks for another fantastically organised event. Not much can be done about the bogs and midges but everything within your control was much appreciated. Keep up the good work, and the surprises. Not knowing is part of the fun and adds to the anticipation of the event. Very much enjoyed the navigational challenges in the 'donut'; keeping the mind working is a key part of the enjoyment.

Thanks again
Robin Orr and James Kellock (C class)


Hi Martin - not a good year for me as we had to retire on the Saturday, but I thought the organisation was excellent - I'm amazed you managed to carry off such complicated logistics.

I enjoyed the bit of the C course that we completed. My wife did the D for the first time and was very pleased to finish it. The D did seem very long, though, compared to the last couple of years.

One minor suggestion - I can see why you had the prize giving by the castle, for the scenery, but it did mean that a lot of people didn't go it. I didn't, because I was waiting at the finish for my wife to come in, and it looked like a lot of runners who had recently arrived weren't ready to move yet. Perhaps it would be better to hold it next to the finish as in previous years.

Anyway thanks again and hope to see you next June. Cheers, Graham Kirby


Well thanks for such an amazing event! It was so exciting getting to Oban and then being given tickets to catch the Ferry to Mull. It had been guessed that was a possible plan, which was confirmed by some
friends arriving ahead of us.

This was my first ever LAMM and I will be back! (although I may drop a class to Novice and then in 2007 go back up to D Class). Had to retire at the end of Day one due to injury, plus missed a check point so was feeling a little disheartened - we were on top of it too - just couldn’t see down the waterfall to it, and groin strain prevented scrambling down for closer inspection (check point 10, D class)

The course was trickier than I thought it would be, and longer compared with the last few I'd looked at online.

Everyone was so friendly, everything was superbly organised and Wilfs bean stew on Sunday was fantastic (even for breakfast).

I'll look forward to next year! Regards Marie Matthews


Thanks for organising such a great event........ C Cragg


Hi Martin,

Thanks to yourself and all the team for a really enjoyable weekend of racing. It's great to be back after a year of injury in 2004. Just a shame we didn't get to see any views! My one request for futrure years is to be more explicit with the control descriptions where there is potential for confusion. Many of the elite teams thought that control 3 on day 2 was in the much bigger re-entrant down the slope to the North East and lost time because of this. The control was actually on a really small one contour re-entrant that I'm sure matched the grid reference. However a description such as Re-entrant (immediately to east of knoll at xxxm) would have stopped most of us from getting confused and losing time!
Simon Bourne


Martin,
Congratulations on putting together such a slick and well organised event. This was my first mountain marathon so I didn't know what to expect. My buddy and I found it really hard, but as the days go by I'm
starting to forget how much it hurt...

Thanks & regards,
Steve Bunn


Many thanks for another great event.

Despite being dsq (our own fault) it was a great fun. Great planning and great organization. The format (secrecy and all) are just fine.

One possible area which might be improved – although I’m not sure how: How do you stop laminated maps from leaking around the folds, and how do you prevent the ink from the marked up course becoming faint in wet/moist conditions? (This was partially the reason we missed our penultimate control on Day 1 – probably more important was the distraction caused by the sheer relief at seeing the campsite below!)
Chris Burden


Dear LAMM crew

Just to let you know how much we appreciate your incredibly hard work putting on this year's LAMM. What an inspired event, the LAMM is always something special but this year you did indeed 'play a
blinder'. The organisation was remarkably detailed and smooth; the course consistently interesting and challenging, and the mid camp flat and comfy! If only you could fix the midges and the slit latrines all would be perfect...

We had a great weekend, I'm just sorry I'll be in NZ next year and miss the more northerly race.

Thanks again Ben Brockway


Martin
Thanks for another excellent LAMM - extremely well organised as usual and the Elite Course was well planned (route choice and challenging navigation - Thanks Andy). Shame we didn't get the views. It would have been great running along the ridges in clear visibility.

By way of feedback:just a couple of comments/suggestions for next year:
1) How about pre-marked maps: nearly everyone had problems marking the maps in the wet.

2) On the Day 1 Elite course it would be worth handing out start times (random or seeded) when you know which bus people are on, making sure they are fairly well spaced (4 or 5 mins minimum). Otherwise, since everyone knows each other, there is a fair amount of cat and mouse waiting to start just after someone good to get dragged round.

Thanks again for a great event. The LAMM is always the most enjoyable of the Mountain Marathons
Nigel Bunn


Hi Martin,

Just a quick email to thank you for a brilliant weekend. It would have been better if my partner had not developed food poisoning the Wednesday beforehand (his "No carb, no calorie diet didn't do us any
favours) :-) But still really enjoyable and we learnt loads for an improved performance next year.

Many thanks once again Jeff - team 13


Thanks again for the great weekend with the unique entourage of the LAMM. Ever so helpful to appreciate the cosy and safe job in the office more.. Looking forward to next year's edition,
Elwin van der Gragt and Court Haegens


Excellent event as always. Thoroughly enjoyed the course (C) and the secrecy (always adds a great - possibly childish - fun edge to the event). Well done for arranging mist - meant I didn't overheat, and the navigation was much more challenging.

Struggle a bit with the laminated maps. Ink tends to run and fade as it gets damp. (Consequently in our haste we totally overlooked the penultimate control on Day 1, whose circle and number had all but disappeared on our map -despite using marker ink. Last year we used biro which would not write in the rain.) Also water gets in at the folds making small sections of the map unreadable. (Fortunately none of
these affected our ability to read and run the course, but it was close in places)
Chris Burden


Martin

We loved the event. Excellently organised as usual. I like your style. Good race organisation is transparent to the competitor and doesn't ususally get noticed. (Usually only bad organisation get commented on!)

It was obvious you and your team had put a lot of effort into the design of the weekend and that was appreciated. If anything didn't go to plan, then as a competitor I didn't spot it!

As soon as we read Oban - we guessed Mull, on the basis that of the earlier description of the terrain (3000ft summits, 1000ft cliffs)!

Even though the mist on day 1 caused us a significant "delay" finding one control and we made a couple of "interesting" route choices on day 2, we still enjoyed it. The mist even cleared on Sunday afternoon to allow some views.

I like your phrase "we don't like to compromise the ethos of novelty, surprises and adventures". That's exactly why the LAMM is my favourite MM. Have you got a date for next years event yet? It'll be the first in my diary.
Phil Janaway & Colin Banks


Hi
Excellent weekend. My only thought is that the D event seemed to be about as hard (or easy) as the C event. About as hard as the KIMM B class. Also is there really a need for a full bivouac bag when we have a tent?
Rod Campbell


It is not my wish to criticise an event that Jayne and I have attended 6 or 7 times and loved so much and praised so highly to all our friends. I will just briefly describe my experience this weekend. I was on a weeks walking holiday in Scotland when Jayne rang me and told me the Final Details email had arrived asking us to arrive early at the LAMM. That was about 3 weeks before the event and too late to change flights or rearrange holiday booked at work. When we received the location as Oban, I realised we must be going on a ferry and presumed it must be Mull. I guessed that we needed to be at Oban by 10pm to catch the last ferry. Friday I left work at 1pm in Worcestershire. Traffic was bad and it was 3.30pm before I picked up Jayne in High Wycombe. The M25 was solid and we diverted round back roads to reach the M1 and then Airparks for Luton Airport. Too late to use the Airparks transport, a kind employee came with
us to the airport in order to drive my car back to Airparks. We got to the late check in desk with minutes to spare, where I proceeded to cause much consternation by believing I had forgotten my passport. I hadnt. We ran to the departure lounge and straight onto the plane.At Glasgow we quickly met Simon & Richard, with whom we were hiring a car and got to the bus stand to await transport. The transport arrived and we were joined on the mini bus by Joan Collins husband. We picked up the hire car around 7.30pm and I drove for Oban. We arrived around 9.45pm. A marshall told us to hurry and get our kit and get down to the Ferry terminal. The ferry left late (around 10.45pm) and we reached Craignure full of
anticipation. In the rain and dark we were ushered onto the little train and had a delightful and very welcome journey to the event centre. This had taken me, personally, 11 hours. Then it was registration, pick up our purchases from Rick, grab a much needed snack from Wilfs, (and a real treat a mug of mulled wine) and erect the tent, and into bed at around 1.30am.

At 5am (after 3 hours sleep) the pipers drone wheezes into action iimmediately beside our tent. We love the piper but wished hed stayed in bed a bit longer. We tried to snatch a bit more sleep but really I was too excited to go back to sleep. At 7.45am we were on the buses driving round the island to be disgorged onto a patch of fell side covered with marshals and other competitors.We had a lovely start to the D with a super track virtually all the way to the first check point amongst lovely scenery (if misty and wet) and then onto the cross over to the Donut. We loved the bit round the old keep and the swathes of yellow iris, and the climb up from the seashore onto the fell side. After that I didnt enjoy the Donut. It may well be stunningly beautiful in clear weather and I can imagine the views across the sea and to the hills of Mull and maybe the mainland. But in those conditions it resembled a KIMM. A Moorland Marathon, trudging through featureless tussocks
and marsh grass, often following a KIMM C class type crocodile trail. Paradoxically, Yes the navigation was technical, and I didnt do as well as I should have, but walked past one control several times before actually spotting it because it was so low in the uneven ground. And what about the one at the bottom of the waterfall what was that all about? Much of the ground was ankle breakingly rough and very tiring and to finish off (very KIMM like) a mile long trudge along a trodden track of boggy tussocks. This all reminded me of the physical endurance nature of a KIMM, where all the pleasure is in surviving because there is not much else to take pleasure in.Day 2 was much more like a LAMM. Up on the high hills with runable ridges and breathtaking descents over steep ground. Lovely! But woe is us we get to the last ridge by the masts and realise that we havent time to visit the last controls. The only way we are going to make the 3pm ferry and so our flight home, is to leg it all the way down the track and abandon the event.

We are pretty gutted about it but feel we have no real choice. We run all the way down and grab the tent and make it to the ferry with time to spare. Then the reverse of the outward journey and I arrive back in Worcestershire at 12.15am Monday. Yes, I know its up to us to be fit enough to complete the event in the allotted time, but I noticed the winning times were not quick. Yes, we do enter into the spirit of the event, but it wasnt 2 hours from Glasgow was it?

However, I realise a lot of selfless people put a great deal of work into creating the event for us to enjoy and Im not forgetting that, and I am grateful for it, especially to you Martin and I give my thanks to all those
people.
Kind regards
Diane Icke


Martin

This was my first LAMM and have doing KIMMs and the early Saunders since 1975.

I thought the event was very well organised and and a most excellent weekend. We had a great time and really enjoyed ourselves. I will certainly enter again if my son will run with me!

In terms of feedback for the future, the laminated maps were good, but the lamination puntured in some places where the maps were folded.

I appreciate the unique character of the LAMM which I'm sure you wish to retain, but I would have rather paid twice as much for my map and had the control circles marked on it.

Many thanks to you and the team.

All the best
Peter Guillaume


Dear Martin,

JUst to say many thanks for organising such a great weekend...........

After several weeks of moaning about being dragged along to do this, I have to say the whole thing was a "wow" experience, especially a piper at 5am. (I have only vague recollections of wandering hopelessly in the mist..)

One day I will go back to Mull to see what it really looks like. Now in search of a partner for next year who plods at my speed - and planning some lessons in NIGHT orienteering.

I hope you and your team have recovered and have had chance of a well deserved rest.

Thanks again
Amanda Strong


Martin,

Thanks for the LAMM this year, it was a great experience for us first timers. I didn't think I'd ever recover from the midge bites, but I seem to have come out the other side of that experience now! Unfortunately my right knee seems to be going the other way and failing to operate correctly without pain anymore, not really sure why though!?

Looking forward to next year already, and judging by our experiences we'd better get a training regime in place now to get ready for the step up to C cat from this years D initiation!

Cheers,
Brian Reynolds


Martin and the Organising Team
A fantastic event. We liked the introduction of the dual scale map especially since the 1:25,000 scale and extra detail really helped navigation in the tricky conditions and allowed the planners to pick less obivous controls. Suggest giving both team members a SI-card so forcing them both to actually visit the control. Many teams on approaching the control split up but distances vary from a few meters to much much further. As in many of the classes teams are only separated by a few minutes this could have an impact. The wearing of numbers on the second day is in sprit of event and a great idea, one leading team admitted to removing them so they could not be identified, surly this is not sporting.
SJ Martin


Hello,
I am sending 2 photos of this years lamm - both taken on D class day 2. I'd also like to say how much I have enjoyed both this year and last years events!! Last year was my first attempt at anything like this and I thoroughly enjoyed it, despite the weather! This year we were going to do C class but dropped down because I was feeling ill. I thought I would find D class easier to cope with but I underestimated it! Mountain marathons are not fun when you are feeling rough... Anyway luckily I felt better for day 2 and had a great day. I think the way the event is organised is fantastic and you can't beat the atmosphere. Looking forward to next year already!
Cheers,Emma Hayhurst


Martin, thanks to you & your team for once again providing a superbly organised weekend in a fantastic location (pity we saw little of it due to the mist!). Having completed 22 KIMMS & this being my 5th LAMM, i can confidently say you have the lead. Different events, i know, but i like the smaller, more friendly & less commercial angles, plus the quality locations, the surprises & the efficiency of your staff. Please pass on my sincere thanks.

Sadly i had to retire on the saturday after the sole of my Walsh's came apart - the first such occurrence in 30yrs of MM's. I understand others had a similar problem - must bring my credit card next year. The beer & music in the pub at Craignure on the saturday evening made up for the disappointment.
Many thanks - will probably see you at the Hodgson Relay or the 3 Peaks.
Graham Maud


Hi Martin
Thanks for a great weekend on Mull - my first LAMM- a real experience. This business of keeping it all a secret really adds to the sense of adventure ( the uncertainty was actually making me feel quite tense leading up to the weekend -weird really). Amazing organisation, I'm sure you could be a real high flyer in the city with those skills, but please don't go, I want to enjoy many more LAMM's in the future. Many Thanks to you and all the team who helped stage the event - I'll definitely make the effort to go 'far north' next year. I don't suppose the piper gets many thanks buts here's one from me - Thanks for getting up first and playing us a decent tune!
All the best
Richard Bradbury


Thank you very much for the unexpected prize of a power stretch top for 1st vets in the Elite. A nice touch + hopefully will encourage more vets next year - we will definitely be back as I find it the most
enjoyable of the 3 main MMs and always in superb places unlike the bogs we usually get on the KIMM. Keep it up.
Steve Lumb


Martin

Received my powerstretch top this morning as prize 1st Vet Elite Team with Steve Lumb. Very nice it is too, Thanks. Can I also take the opportunity to thank you for an excellent weekend on Mull, over the years I have completed many KIMM's, Saunders and the like and currently the LAMM is the best out there. Long may it continue.Hopefully I will see you at Polaris this weekend to thank in person.

Cheers,
Stu Ferguson


Dear Martin,

You asked for some feedback on the two mapscales that you used this year. I felt that in use it was quite confusing & difficult to adjust one's brain to the different scales at times. When in contact with the map it was fine, but on long, bearing only, legs, we lost the feeling for how far we had gone. For us this happened twice, once when in mist, and surprisingly, once below the mist (in the complex area east of Castle Moy). I can see the perceived need for 2 scales. The 1:25000 is useless for long leg planning with its plethora of black detail; whereas the 1:400000, which I assume to be a blow up of their 1:50000 files, does lack some crag and contour detail. Thanks for your efforts in putting the event on.

Yours Faithfully, Chris Lates


Martin

just a thank you note for organising the dog kennels for us again this year. The kennels were fine and the location very convenient. We enjoyed ourselves very much and we were excited to be going to Mull, a place I had never been to before. Just a point about the course on Saturday we found that there was too much track, road and taped route we expected a more remote route choice to be available up on the ridges - safety is the responsibility of the runners and we accept that as part of the attraction of the event. Sunday was fine and we will be back again next year.

thanks again
Jane Hornsby





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Route planning above Loch Duich

The clouds over mid camp

Racing together - the spirit of the event