Running Wild in the Blue Mountains
Running Wild is a trail running club based in the Blue Mountains of NSW, and consisting of keen runners from all walks of life. Now in their sixth season of racing, RW have a loyal and consistent following, and a suite of well-established, sanctioned runs divided into Long and Short Course divisions, including a night-time run.
RW approached Tempus to time their sixth season commencing with the Glenbrook Marathon – which also incorporates two races over the shorter distances of 34km and 25km. Entry is capped at around 300 people, as the national park ecosystem through which the event travels can be quite delicate. It also passes iconic Aboriginal heritage sites such as the Red Hands Cave. For this reason, the Welcome to Country performed by legendary local resident Dave King, held even deeper meaning.
The race site is located deep within the Blue Mountains National Park and run with the co-operation of the NPWS. Great care is taken by the organisers not to impact too heavily on the pristine environment of the gorgeously-named Blue Labyrinth area, and naturally there is no internet or mobile phone connectivity. This did not impact at all on Tempus’s ability to time the race, but the generator was a handy addition on this trip.
As mentioned, the RW community is a diverse bunch, and with the fair sprinkling of trail running and marathon distance virgins, were some very capable and competitive runners. The eventual winner of the men’s marathon was the first person to break the 3-hour mark, thereby setting a new course record for the race. Ironically, he had rolled out of bed that morning with the intention of running the race as a training run, not a race.
Other features which made the event stand out and which were lauded by members and visitors alike on the RW Facebook page were the well-maintained aid stations, clear trail markings, a sausage sandwich on completion, and unique medals for the marathon finishers. For some, having chip timing was the cream on the cake, and also worthy of FB comment.
If you’re new to trail running and want to experience a well-run event with the emphasis on safety and fun, go no further than Running Wild. Non-members are welcome to race, and more information about Season 6 and the entire club can be found here.
Full results here.
Image by Chris Thomas – GeoSnapShot