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Sun shines on Lakeland Trails Coniston

by kirsty
Monday 5th June 2017
 
 
Now, it rains in the Lake District a lot. That’s a fact. I’ve done a lot of running in zero visibility, full waterproofs, hat and gloves and that’s in July. But, the sun always seems to shine on Lakeland Trails races! 
 
The Coniston race was no exception. Driving down towards the lakeside start/finish area the sun was out and there were already lots of eager runners milling around. One of the great things about Lakeland Trails races is that there are always a few different distances going off at different times (at Coniston it was marathon, half marathon, 10k) so the fun lasts all day. It also takes masterful planning to avoid finishers of one race clashing with the start of another, but the Lakeland Trails team have nailed the organisation of these races. 

LT collage

The marathon is a complete circuit of Coniston Water, with some stunning views of the Old Man, Swirl How, Wetherlam and Dow Crags, and with a  circumnavigation of Tarn Hows. The half marathon takes in the first 17k of the marathon, a tootle round the very scenic Tarn Hows, then heads back to Coniston. The 10k follows the beautiful Torver Trail route. I opted for the half, thinking that it would be a nice longish run but it wouldn’t leave me too knackered. 
 
As a southerner who loves hills much more than they love me, this race is ideal. It’s pleasantly hilly but they’re all reasonably short, not too steep and very runnable. So you get a bit of a hill fix but without any of the really tough, hands-on-knees climbing that exposes you as a weak southerner. All the Lakeland Trails races follow pretty good paths, so you don’t need to be a fell runner with nerves of steel on technical terrain. They’re also well-marked, so no map reading required. 
 
The miles few by on the half as I took in the views and followed woodland paths that went up and down, and lovely trails which occasionally revealed the lake. Before I knew it we’d reached Tarn Hows, which on a lovely sunny day was heaving with walkers and families, then there were a few more ups and downs before we hit the outskirts of Coniston again, when it became mercifully flat until the end. 
 

LT2
This demonstrates just how much fun a Lakeland Trails race is

The finish of any Lakeland Trails race is pretty special as loads of people, music and general jollity greets you in the final straight. However, with the stunning finish line next to Coniston Water this was a particularly awesome finish. Then to watch other runners coming in, enjoy food, drink and live music just made it a great day out. If you haven’t tried a Lakeland Trails race yet you are really missing out. For details on the rest of this year’s races go to www.lakelandtrails.org and enter now. 

All images by Pete Aylward
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

About The Author

Kirsty Reade

I’d describe myself as borderline obsessed with running, racing, reading about running, and watching others run so hopefully I’m fairly typical of Run247’s visitors. I tend to do longer races, particularly off-road marathons and ultras, but am pretty much a fan of any distance. I'm passionate about helping runners of all levels to improve through running communities I'm involved in, such as Underground Ultra and Free Range Runners. 

 
 
 
 
 

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