Fell running is type of running which originates in the North of England and is particaully popular in Cumrbia, Lancashire and Yorkshire. It basically means running over hills, valleys and moorlands.
For years ive looked at hills and thought wouldnt it be great to run that. Well today (Dcember 24th 2016), i finally got my first taste of felling running. As I joined up with a host of runners from verious clubs including of course Preston Harriers, to take part in their annual Christmas eve fell run up White Coppice, a small place just outside Chorley, Lancashire, home to 1,000 ft of hill climb and synonymous with a fell runner known as Joe Whitter (Nice chap it seems) who has his own memorial up on these moors.
Annoyingly, i have recently missed a week of running due to sprained ankle but i had healed up another to decide that i didnt want to miss out on this trip and although it was tough going on the old ankle it was well worth it. There were some great views on offer, some chllegning terrian to naviage over and of course a tough hill climb. Being new to the run and to fell running i ensured i that i always stayed behind someone so that A) i didnt get lost and B) so that i would watch how they move across the terrian, a sort deomstration in fell running if you will. That said, with all the stopping to let the slower runners catch up i had enough energy to surge up to the summate to be the first one at the top, the competive runner in me couldnt resist.
One major learning point and this is something my lunch time runnign partner Rob Hope has pointed out to me, is when you run up hills you need to avoid using your heels , you want to be up on your toes and sure enough plenty of these experienced fell runners were doing just that. Something i will have to pratice until it becomes second nature.
I think my misson to run at least one near or completly off road run a week and the cross country races have done is paying off for this run, as the terrain wasnt too bad, mostly being the kind of stuff I have faced in cross country, wet muddy grassland. Although there were a couple of very narrow ridges and some rocky sections, which will take a lof practice on before i become confirdent of running.
So learing wise, I need to practice hill climbs, running on rocky terrian and picking a good path across a boggy moor….thats another key thing to learn for this kind of running (There will be mud!!). It was a great introduction to fell running and i am looking forward to returning to this kind of running latter on in 2017.
Here’s a bunch of pictures from the run, none of which are of me as i took the snaps……