Marmot Dark Mountains 2015

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The organisers of the formidable Marmot Dark Mountains™ have just announced that the 2015 event will take place in the Howgills on the night of 24th & 25th January 2015.
Marmot Dark Mountains™ takes the classic two-day mountain marathon format and gives it a new… darker twist. Rather than two days of running with an overnight camp in between, Marmot Dark Mountains™ packs everything into one winter’s night!
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The event kicks-off on the Saturday evening with the longest classes setting off first for dusk-to-dawn racing. The shorter classes set off later in the evening with the aim of most competitors finishing within an hour or so of each other the following Sunday morning. This makes for an exciting finale as all the courses and most of the competitors converge on the finish as dawn breaks.
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Race Director, Shane Ohly from Ourea Events describes the 2015 event area, “The Howgills provide a superb setting for Marmot Dark Mountains™. The terrain is definitely more runable than previous editions of the race but with the steep sided valleys that are typical, there is significant height gain, and the course are sure to provide a suitable test of endurance.” He continued, “The Howgills also seem to catch more than their fair share of winter weather and we are anticipating a tough challenge for those competitors brave enough to enter.”
©iancorless.com.©iancorless.com.P1100464Marmot Dark Mountains™ has a growing reputation as the test of competence for experienced mountain runners. Ordinarily a standard mountain marathon with its combination of mountain running and navigation at its heart is a sufficient challenge but Marmot Dark Mountains™ takes it a step further by packing two days of running into one long winters night with dusk-to-dawn racing.
Marmot Dark Mountains™ 2013 was held in the southwest fells of the Lake District National Park. That year the event experience extremely poor weather and the completion rate for the linear courses averaged just 21%. In 2014 the event moved to the Peak District National Park and with better weather the completion rate rose to 53%. Still, these are low completion rates considering that competitors are vetted for experience before their entry is accepted.
With the announcement of the venue, the organisers have also released details of the routes, which have been planned by Charlie Sproson who is a regular Race Planner for Ourea Events. These are:
  • Elite Course: 53.1km / 2,966m
  • A Course: 42.3km / 2,415m
  • B Course: 35.8km / 2,311m
  • C Course: 33.9km / 1,770m
  • Long Score: 10 Hours
  • Short Score: 8 hours
Working in collaboration with Harvey Maps at the 2014 Marmot Dark Mountains™ bespoke ‘high contrast’ maps were produced for the first time. These were designed to show contours more clearly in the dark and when the map is illuminated by high-powered headtorches. These were a great success and the 2015 event will also feature these special night maps.
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Race Director, Shane Ohly elaborated, “For an event that is focused on mountain navigation and running, we understand completely that the quality of the map is directly linked to the quality of the overall experience and as such, we invest significant time and energy into the map. As in previous years we will be using waterproof and tearproof paper and our special night-nav high contrast printing developed with Harvey Maps. Whilst checking control sites both Charlie Sproson and I have been recording new paths, fences etc with GPS and combined with Harvey’s updating their base data from a new photogrammetry survey data, we are confident that we will provide a high quality and accurate map for the competitors.”
With the support of sponsorship from Marmot® and Petzl® there is a £500 cash prize for the winning elite team. In 2014 Steve Birkinshaw and Tom Gibbs won and Alex Pilkington and Kim Collison won in 2013.
Key Event Information
Website: www.Marmot-Dark-Mountains.com
Date: 24th & 25th January 2015
Venue: Howgills, Northern England
Entry: from £50 per person
Courses: Elite, A, B, C, Short and Long Score

Marmot Dark Mountain - FINAL (BLACK)

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Berghaus Trail Chase 2014 – Race preview

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Shane Ohly and Ourea Events have pioneered the growth of trail, mountain and navigation events within the UK in the last couple of years. It’s a boom time and as we all gain more knowledge and experience, the more we demand from an event… this may be increasingly difficulty to provide; longer distances, mountain marathon style navigation or maybe a combination of the two. It’s not easy to come up with a new concept!

Enter the inaugural Berghaus Trail Chase.

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It’s a great concept and one that stems from Ohly’s multiday experience. However, we are not all supreme navigators! Importantly, we may not want to navigate but are looking for a concept and a style of racing that not only provides a new stimulus but also a new experience.

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Three spectacular courses located in the North York Moors National Park provide the setting for ‘the chase.’ Starting on Saturday, runners are transported from the event centre to their respective starts for the adventure to begin. Using a colour-coded format pioneered in skiing, Ohly offers three fully way marked courses: long course as one would expect is black, middle course will be red and the shortest course will be blue.

Aapproximate distances and height gains are:

  • Blue Course. Day One = 16.6km / 326m. Day Two = 10.1km / 291m. Total 26.7km / 617m
  • Red Course. Day One = 25.3km / 801m. Day Two = 17.4km / 582m. Total 42.7km / 1,383m
  • Black Course. Day One = 32.8km / 1,012m. Day Two = 21.3km / 814m. Total 54.1km / 1,826m

Starting simultaneously, all three courses, black, red and blue will converge at the same overnight campsite at the end of the first day. The only difference for runners will be the distance covered. Day-1 camp will provide a relaxed and friendly atmosphere with an emphasis on an opportunity to relax, have fun and share stories of the adventure day-1 provided. A large marquee will be available providing music, bar and food… sounds great!

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Sunday is when the real excitement begins and the true ‘chase’ commences. Runners will depart in the order they finished on day-1. The objective? Front-runners will try to hold the lead and respective places while behind a battle royal will commence as you CHASE the runner in front. It’s simple, catch a runner, you gain a place!

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A real head-to-head race will develop and tactics will come into play. Go out too hard and you may blow up… go out to easy and you will possibly loose places. The Berghaus Trail Chase brings an innovative format to trail running and one that not only provides a new incentive and experience to each and every runner, but also really does put the fun back into racing.

Are you the tortoise or the hare?

 

Practical Info:

Event Centre – Osmotherley
The Event Centre is where all the competitors will park on Saturday morning, register, catch buses to the different starts and finish on the Sunday. The field we are using for the Event Centre is where the Osmotherley Show is held and it is a well-drained, flat field with a gravel track running along one side. The exact StreetMap location is HEREand the Google Maps image below also shows the exact location. It is just a few minutes drive from the A19. The closest postcode for SatNav is DL6 3PY.

Important race logistics and final race information HERE

Berghaus Event Partners