Tuesday, 18 December 2012

Ultra Running

Descending off Green Gable on leg 4

I've been putting the miles in on the hills since returning from Nepal with the though of a winter Bob Graham attempt keeping me focused. Unfortunately a wee tumble while out on an all night training run has left me a bit battered and bruised. Long grass, ice and waterproof bottoms don't mix and I took a slide over a small outcrop performing a couple of backward somersaults before landing on my head. Somehow I walked away but have had to put my attempt on hold until after Christmas.

However with the shortest day of the year approaching it's also time for the now classic Tour de Helvellyn, a 38 mile off road ultra in the Lake District. The last couple of years have seen plenty of snow on the route but things are looking like they're going to be a lot more wild and woolly this year. There are more than 200 runners entered for what's a great day out in the hills. Here's a small video I put together from last years event.

Tour de Helvellyn - 17th Dec 2011 from Mountain Zac on Vimeo.

For January 2013 there's also a new event in northern England with the inaugural Marmot Dark Mountains, an overnight mountain marathon. I recently spent a night out in full on conditions route checking and it's looking like being a very challenging competition which will really test runners mountaincraft. This is a great original idea so if you're looking for something a bit different next year then I'd encourage you to go for this especially as the organisers have promised a full moon and great conditions!

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