The 192-mile route over the Lake District and Pennines is usually plodded by hikers but our writer zips across on a new guided running trip
Burning with exertion, I shuffle up the hillside, a sweaty mess. Beside me, the heather is also dripping – with morning drizzle. A fresh, Lakeland breeze envelops me as I climb out of the sheep-speckled valley, mud squelching under my feet. This is trail running in the fells – though right now the word “running” is a misnomer.
Happily, Mark Sandamas of Coast To Coast Packhorse (pictured above, with the writer), a company that helps walkers and cyclists, as well as runners, to tackle the 192-mile coast-to-coast route, doesn’t consider my plodding gait a problem. “The beauty of trail running is that your pace is dictated by the changing landscape,” he tells me as we pause to drink in views of majestic Crummock Water far below.
“You hike up steep sections to preserve energy, then let the brakes off and flow downhill.”