durham, United Kingdom
June 12, 2005
It was covered in snow! Not to be broken, I insisted that we continue up the hill and have a look to see if it was open. With reluctance (and the offer of me buying a round), they followed. Upon arrival at the main entrance, we found that there was a bar, so we trooped in to exchange cash for beer, which turned out to be off.
The run had obviously been closed for winter, and they had just left a barrel on tap for about 5 months. As we left, totally disheartened by the fact that we wouldn’t be risking life on a plastic cart down a frozen tin run, we noticed a couple of guys zooming past on the run with brushes.
"They’re clearing lads, so it must be opening soon," I said as I over-excitedly ran back up the bank. It opens in about 1 hour I was told.
It was well worth the wait. It was worth 140kc for three runs down a 800m tin track. The first couple of runs were a bit icy and had you sliding all over the place, but after that, it was clean and we had the confidence to run flat out, breaking less and less, until run 5, where the over-confidence and urge to catch the guy in front got too much. Hunched down for better aerodynamics, I hit a patch of slush, then a corner, and then, wham, I was airborne, off the side of the track and the back of my sleigh, coming to a sliding snow-covered stop further down the track. Mercifully, I received no injuries, especially to the drinking hand. I got up and went a few more times.
It’s great if there are a few of you going. In the summer they do timed runs, so you can race with your mates. It’s a bit of a trek to get there if you’re in the city centre, but it kills some time and you can have a laugh.
From journal Prague - A Week of Beer