Author Archives: TrailRunMag

Check Out the 2024 Trail Run Event Guide


Welcome to the Trail Run Event Guide 2024!

Get ready to dive into the ultimate trail running experience of the year! Whether you’re a seasoned trail warrior or a newbie keen to explore the Aussie wilderness, our guide can help you for your ticket to adventure, challenge, and some fair dinkum natural beauty. The trails are calling – are you ready to answer?

 

For More Info Visit the Link:

TAILWIND ENDURANCE FUEL


Review by Giles Penfold

TAILWIND. A WIND OF CHANGE IN THE WORLD OF TRAIL RUNNING.

But what kind of change, you may be asking? Preventing nutrition ‘gut bombs’ from complete and utter sabotage.

The longer answer is a little more nuanced, so I’ve been testing their Endurance Fuel to really understand how it affects my body.

First thing’s first (and please skip to the next paragraph if you’re squeamish). Tailwind was born out of one person’s necessity to quite literally not regurgitate their nutrition during an ultra. Let that sink in for a second. If you’ve ever had stomach issues when running, you know. If you haven’t, do your best to imagine. I’ve been there a number of times, specifically during runs exceeding the three hour mark. I generally avoid gels and powders, and instead religiously stick to less practical options like fruit and muesli bars.

When the team at Tailwind sends me their product, instinctively, my stomach growls, and my psyche is equally suspicious (gut-brain axis anyone?). Long story short, my body not only reacts surprisingly well to their endurance powder, but actually thrives off of it. Let me elaborate.

I test their mandarin flavour on about half a dozen long runs (20km+) and have zero issues with digestibility. Zilch. This purportedly boils down to Tailwind’s main ingredient dextrose being a form of clean glucose that is rapidly assimilated by your system, bypassing the stomach pile up that complex sugars and protein can cause. Happy stomach, happy days.

The training tick of approval is there, and although initially hesitant, I go all in, choosing to fuel my 110km race at Brisbane Ultra Trail with their endurance fuel. My nutrition strategy is simple – eat intuitively at aid stations and consume two scoops of Tailwind per hour, giving me 50g of carbs and 200cal.

My energy is maintained and my stomach remains in operation. Over 13 hours of racing, I never get sick of the drink mix, and for someone that’s used to chowing down on wholefoods, the ease of drinking calories is genuinely brilliant!

Somehow, I cross the finish line in 2nd Place, and can safely attest to the fact that my nutrition strategy plays a crucial role, spearheaded by Tailwind’s Endurance Fuel.
Flavour wise, Tailwind prides itself on being clean and light. I can confidently back this up, and find the mandarin flavour to be quite mild, making it easy to consume over extended bouts of movement. Let’s be honest, there’s nothing worse than sickly sweet drinks on long runs.

As a heavy sweater, I’m also a big fan of Tailwind’s electrolyte profile. At 606mg of sodium per 200cal, this dose considerably outsmarts other drink mixes when it comes to hydration.

Bottom line – go try it yourself!

VITALS
RRP $65 AUD / 30 Serve Bag
WEB tailwindnutrition.com.au

 

GNARLY TALES BREAKING 101

 

WORDS: KATE DZIENIS
IMAGES: NANCY JAYDE PHOTOGRAPHY, CHARLIE SPAGALLI

GNARLY TALES BREAKING 101

BREAKING 101

Earlier this year, an Aussie and a Kiwi smashed the world record in the backyard racing format. West Australian Phil Gore and New Zealander Sam Harvey took to the Australian Backyard Masters start line in country Queensland last June and before they knew it, their names were set in stone as they equalled the record of 101 laps (yards) with Phil then completing one more lap to claim the title of a new world record. Kate Dzienis got a chance to catch up with both endurance athletes, as well as race director Timothy Walsh, to get the lowdown on the day it all happened.

***

It’s the hottest part of the day in regional Queensland. The clock strikes noon, and with it, the sun beats down endlessly with no reprieve in sight. A cow bell sounds, its vibration trilling across the wide expanse of a cattle farm, signalling the start of something magical about to happen.

Wednesday. June 21, 2023. One hour earlier, at 11am, an Aussie and a Kiwi broke the world record in backyard racing at Dead Cow Gully at the inaugural Australian Backyard Masters, and the running community went off its nuts. 

Everyone called it Breaking 101. From live streamers and crew members on site, to anyone keeping updated via social platforms, Perth’s Phil Gore and New Zealand’s Sam Harvey completed 101 laps that morning – breaking the record set by Belgian runners Merijn Geerts and Ivo Steyaert at the Backyard Ultra World Team Championships in October 2022.

At 12pm on Wednesday, June 21 both Phil and Sam stood at the start line ready to take it even further, their bodies taking their spirits to a new level of euphoria; and their spirits taking their bodies to a new level of pain. High noon and they’d matched the record, but now they needed to secure a new one for all the world to witness.

Both men took off from the start line to tackle lap 102, the furthest any backyard entrant on the planet has done. Testing their bodies to the absolutely maximum, Sam made the decision to turn back around, leaving Phil to complete those last 6.706km on his own and by 2pm, as he took those last steps towards his wife and lead crew, Gemma, Phil set the new world record of 102 laps with Sam graciously granted the title of Assist.

Going into the Masters, breaking records was never something Phil had set his sights on. He went into the race simply wanting to do ‘his thing’ and follow his plan – it was all about focusing on what he was doing at that exact moment.

“I was never hanging out to get to the world record, and I thought we’d (Sam and I) be done around lap 98,” he explains.

“In my head, I thought yeah, this is still such a great title. I wasn’t bummed or anything that we weren’t going to get to the record. But then we both lined up for lap 99, and I thought right, we’re doing this. Only three more laps. I never really thought at that point that we could get to it.

“Suddenly, we started 101 and I was like, wow, we’re going to get the world record and in my head I thought right, this is what we’re doing. We’re doing it.”

Phil never has a set goal in mind when
he enters last one standing events; his main ambition being to simply stay in the race for as long as he possibly can. It doesn’t mean strolling up to the start line and just going willy nilly – he does have contingencies in place, as many serious runners do, in the form of a spreadsheet with plans for each potential lap. Each lap consists of information he and his crew follow, from nutrition and shoe changes, to naps and showers – not just what pace to take.

And those laps don’t stop at a specific number so in the event of going beyond what he may have thought possible, the plan is still right there in front of him.

“I go into an event like Masters with the mindset that I could potentially be there for four or five days, but I don’t set anything as a particular goal because you just never know what’s going to happen, especially with a backyard,” he says.“
My spreadsheet has everything broken down into every single hour; it tells
me what pace I’m going to go at, what
I’m going to eat during the break, if I’m going to sleep or not, when to re-apply sunscreen…it helps both myself and my crew know ahead of time what we’re going to do during the break between laps so no one has to think about anything.”

Phil works with three pace ranges – a slow recovery lap (50 minutes) which enables him a 10 minute break before the next lap for a quick rest and to settle his stomach, an easy pace 45 minute lap which allows him to have something to eat within his 15 minute start window, and a 40 minute lap if he’s planning a shower or a nap. He re- iterates it doesn’t necessarily dictate exactly how fast to go, but offers him a guide to what he should aim for to get a break.

Going into the Masters event, Phil knew the big names that he’d be facing, including Sam as well as Ryan Crawford and America’s Harvey Lewis so despite never going in with a set goal in mind, he did know that if it was a good race, he’d be there for the long haul.

When asked how it feels to essentially be the person to beat in the world of backyards, Phil says it’s one of the most surreal emotions he’s ever gone through.

“For me, I’ve simply been in the right place, at the right race, with the right circumstances and where the right people have helped me get there,” he affirms.

“A lot of it depends on who can push you to those limits, but many runners can seriously surprise you – Sam, for instance, his PB was 46 laps in New Zealand, but at Masters he got all the way to 101. That’s an incredible jump, and such a great effort.”

Back in New Zealand, Sam started running as a means of staying fit and used it as training for other sports like rugby. After moving to Nashville, Tennessee in the US to play and coach rugby, his fitness peaked and life revolved around rugby, boxing and running. It was there he ran his first official 5km race where he came fourth.

From Tennessee to Ireland, more races were put on the table and Sam found himself on the podium for each one. When he returned to New Zealand, he did all the events he could get his hands on – boxing matches, triathlons, mountain bike races. Until eventually in 2018 he did his first 50km at Krayzie Kaypers in Orton Bradley Park near Christchurch, and running became a central part of his life.

Sam reveals the Masters this year were a semi-A race for him and his goal was to break the world record and win the World Championships. Having been raced at the Dead Cow Gully course, he went into the Masters knowing it was the only venue flat enough to break records so went into it with an emphasis on that.

“I knew who Phil was, and of course
who Harvey Lewis was, so looking at the Masters, I figured we were probably the ones that were going to go the distance in the end,” he reveals.

“I wasn’t wrong.

“The first 48 hours would have honestly been the hardest. It’s those early hours of the race where my mind wanders and I get bored, the bulk of the work is still to come, and it’s in those moments where you figure your time could be better spent elsewhere. After the 48 hour mark in this one though, it was party time. That’s when I truly felt like we were racing and I remembered why I was there.

“I think the only time I was truly a bit mentally weak was when I let supporters and event staff talk me into pulling out
of the race. I take full ownership of that though. If it hadn’t have been for me showing how crook the pneumonia had made me (I was a little bit sick leading into the race and I became a big bit sick by the end of it), I wouldn’t have been a candidate for them wanting to pull me from the race.

“It feels pretty damn good (to be a real contender in the backyard format). I’ve been working a long time as a sportsman to finally find my place where I can succeed and dominate. I’m excited to see where I can go from here.”

There’s a lot that goes on behind the scenes to organise an event like the Masters. Race directors in general have a lot to contend with, and it wasn’t any different for Timothy Walsh, who says the Dead Cow Gully location is a different type of beast.

“Particularly in winter,” he explains. “Most Australians don’t actually realise how cold country Queensland can get; we had tops

THE BACKYARD ULTRA

Unfamiliar with backyard ultras? They’re also called Last One Standing events, and test your body differently than a continuous race because no matter what condition you’re in, you are forced to stop every 6.706km and take a break until the start of the next hour. Whether you’ve completed the distance in 35 minutes or 55 minutes, whatever time is left before the hour strikes, that’s all you have – for recovery, food, sleep, hydration, change of clothes or shoes, reapplication of creams, game plan review.

There are a number of ways to finish your race at a backyard, which is called a DNF.

  • Receive an automatic disqualification for coming in after the 60-minute mark
  • Choose not to stand at the start line when the hour is about to start
  • Start a lap but turn around to return
  • Be the last one to complete a lap and be declared the winner Check our 2024 Event Guide for the next backyard ultra near you to give it a red hot crack!

LSKD

HOLY. SMOKES.

Have I found the most comfortable and form fitting running pants, like, ever?!

Australian activewear LSKD, based in Qld, claims to ‘hug you in all the right places’…and yes. Yes it does. Yes it does hug me in all the right places. 

The LSKD Women’s Fusion Full Length Legging has one of my favourite features in a running pants leg – a high rise fold over waistband with pockets. There’s no seam in the front, so the chance of a ‘camel toe’ is pretty much not on the table, and the material is, in the words of Sean Paul, ‘…smooth, just like-a silk’ made out of 70% polyester and 30% elastane. 

Out on the trails in the Fusion Full Length Leggings, comfort was supreme. No falling down at the crotch, length was perfect for those colder mornings, and my keys and phone were held firmly in place. 

I also had a chance to review LSKD’s Fusion Mid-Length Bike Shorts in the Auburn colour, which is fast becoming one of the brand’s best sellers in the lead up to summer. Again, comfort reigns supreme in these (70% polyester, 30% elastane) with 4-way stretch fabric, soft matte finish, and a fold over waistband. These are so versatile, they’ll become your new fave go-to pair for everything – trail runs, gym, cycling, and even everyday wear, with absolutely no worries about sweat marks. You can also get ones to suit your personality with a range of colours (Auburn, Blush Leopard, Black, Navy, Spark Pink and Flamingo). 

Essentially, LSKD are true to size once you measure yourself according to their online size chart and for a guide, I’d say their worded sizes translate to the following numerals: S(8), M(10), L(12), XL(14), 2XL(16) and 3XL(18). 

The fabric on both the Women’s Fusion Full Length Legging and Fusion Mid-Length Bike Shorts is top notch quality, whilst the entire LSKD brand is inspired by a streetwear aesthetic. And you know when sometimes you put on a pair of running tights and they just don’t quite look right? LSKD are flattering on all size legs and pocket life is real. 

The bottom line? The most comfy, hug-me-tighter run pants I’ve ever trailed in.

VITALS
RRP Fusion Full Length Leggings $73 AUD
RRP Fusion Mid-Length Bike Short $67 AUD
WEB www.lskd.co

BECOMING KILIAN JORNET A Q&A WITH TRAIL RUNNING’S G.O.A.T

He is arguably trail running’s Greatest Of All Time. Kilian Jornet Burgada is a Spanish pro sky runner, trail runner, ski mountaineer, ultra runner and explorer of all things outdoors. Dominant in the sport of running since 2007, Kilian’s list of prestigious wins and titles is longer than you could ever imagine. He’s also summited Mount Everest twice, because why not?! Editor Kate Dzienis together with guest interviewer Simon Poli, an avid trail runner who himself has achieved incredible results in the world of racing, were given the opportunity to speak with Kilian to see what he’s doing now with his new brand Nnormal and how life in Norway with his family is treating him.

INTERVIEW BY: KATE DZIENIS & SIMON POLI IMAGES: DAVID ARIÑO, NICK DANIELSON, JAIME DE DIEGO, JULIEN RAISON

After living in Norway now for so long, do you ever think about how life would be different if you had continued on a professional skiing mountaineering path?

Honestly, it’s difficult to say how my career might have shifted if circumstances were different. I’ve always seen skiing, mountaineering and trail running not just as sports, but as complementary activities of a lifestyle connected to the mountains. My journey in both disciplines has been less about pursuing goals and more about the connection I feel with nature.
Being able to train in Norway’s stunning landscapes has been a privilege. This place has been a constant source of inspiration and a perfect setting for both trail running and skiing mountaineering.

TRM: You have been labelled as arguably the G.O.A.T of trail running. Does this label add extra pressure when you compete knowing that everyone expects you to win? How do you best handle that pressure?

Honestly, I’ve never been one to chase after labels or titles. My focus has always been on pushing my own limits and exploring what’s possible. I believe in being the best version of myself, both as an athlete and as a person who deeply respects and loves the mountains. 

When it comes to pressure, it’s true that in the early days of my career, feeling the weight of expectations could be challenging. What used to feel like pressure when I was younger has transformed into something more akin to nerves—a kind of anticipatory energy that heightens my focus and keeps me grounded in the moment. These nerves are important; they remind me that what I’m doing still matters deeply to me, that I’m still passionate.

Does having that label influence what events you compete in?

I don’t think so. It’s about embracing the experience, staying connected with my surroundings, and remembering why I fell in love with each trail running race. 

You seem to be able to back up race after race and do so successfully, what does an average week of training look like for you and do you ever have weeks where you just think about not training?

My training routines are totally based on how I feel in each moment. There’s no objective rather than the training itself, and that’s how I try to improve every day. My goal has always been to enjoy the process, to explore myself and my inner limits. Competitive results are a part of this, which makes you push yourself even more. In the end, competing is the perfect excuse for athletes to train harder.

When not running events you have a habit of doing something that most mortals just think wow! I.e. Mt Everest Climb, 7 Peaks of Romsdal, Vertical KM, etc. How do you decide on what or where you want to challenge yourself?

There is no special way of deciding, usually they come across by reading about them or just imagining if some routes or adventures could be possible. 7 Peaks of Romsdal is a project that I always had in mind. It’s just a matter of finding the moment and conditions where I’m able to fit these kinds of activities into my training.

It’s also about the connection I feel with the place and the story behind every adventure. For instance, I wanted to tackle the Bob Graham Challenge because of the history of fell running and to better understand and connect with a community and a history. In any case, there’s a deep respect for the mountains and the natural environment in every challenge I take on. 

Having a very successful career with one of the world’s major trail/skiing brands in Salomon, what and when was the moment you decided to start NNormal?

I’ve always been obsessed with gear. When I was just a kid I spent a lot of time imagining how my perfect running shoes would be, and then drawing them on my notebooks. Having the opportunity to conceive a project like this is something unique and I’m super excited to have started a partnership with Camper one year ago. 

We met with the Camper team as we had friends in common, and we started talking and realised we were sharing the same philosophy and vision and we thought we were the right partners. We agreed that we needed a new way of thinking and acting in relation to our environment and outdoor activities, so sharing these values was the most important reason to start working together and launch NNormal.

Are you and the NNormal team surprised by the quick success of the brand and where it’s currently positioned in the trail running world?

The feedback that we are getting is very good and we are very happy for that. However, we know we need to keep working and putting all our effort into our commitment. Some customers have proudly told us how many kilometres they have run with the same pair of Kjerag without losing functionality. Seeing that our shoes resist kilometres and kilometres is undoubtedly the most satisfying, since this is the main purpose for which they were designed, and it motivates us to continue working on developing our products while trying to change the game rules in the trail running gear industry.

The NNormal Project is an amazing success which I would put down to your name and attitude being a major factor, do you think this will encourage other brands to really focus on a sustainable sport instead of focusing on high turnover and mass producing gear?

We have always wanted NNormal to be more than a company, a tool that creates a positive impact. One of the company’s missions is to change the rules of the game in the industry, promoting the circular economy and avoiding overconsumption. If that serves as an example for other companies or contributes to the transformation of the economy, we are more than satisfied and will undoubtedly continue to strive towards that.

With the values of Nnormal focused on reducing the impact on the environment, whether it be through education in the running communities, reusable and recyclable gear or always reviewing production practices, we wanted to ask about events. What approach is Nnormal taking towards running events?

We knew that running events would be something challenging for NNormal, since there is an environmental impact associated with them. Our approach is to address these issues head-on, while also being realistic about the practicalities of hosting and participating in events.

Firstly, in terms of gear, we emphasise the importance of durability and repairability. We encourage people to use gear that lasts longer, reducing the need for frequent replacements. Our products are designed with this ethos, ensuring they are not just environmentally friendly but also durable and practical. 

Travel is another significant aspect. While it’s challenging to completely eliminate travel for events, we advocate for more local and regional races to reduce the need for long-distance travel.

We aim to have a presence in the running community to spread our message, but we want to do so responsibly. We try to stay true to our values and we believe that by leading by example, we can collectively work towards more sustainable and environmentally friendly running events.

Most running couples with kids have to flip a coin to decide who gets to compete in an event, is there a similar decision making process with you and Emelie?

Balancing family and competitive running is indeed a significant aspect of our lives, but Emelie and I have been fortunate in managing this balance quite harmoniously. It’s a team effort, and this support system allows both Emelie and I to train and compete without compromising on our family time. It’s about finding that equilibrium where our love for our family and our passion for nature complement each other. Besides, we love to explore and enjoy nature with our girls as well. 

CELL SQUARED

 

IF YOU’RE KEEN TO ACTIVATE THE BEST VERSION OF YOURSELF, CELL SQUARED SHOULD BE YOUR GO TO.

They provide the very best in delivering ‘back to basics’ ingredients in their health and wellbeing products with superior sourcing, superior quality, and conscious agriculture in Australia.

I had the opportunity to test out two of their showstopping products – Organic Grass-Fed Beef Liver Capsules and their ACO Certified Organic Grass-Fed Beef Liver Powder.

Hear me out, seriously. I understand. You hear the word ‘liver’ and yes, it’s an acquired and unique taste in our western world, but Cell Squared
has created these capsules and powder that can give you all the nutrients of beef liver in its best supplement form possible.

Historically, ancient cultures have praised the health benefits of eating organs, with liver widely known as one of the most nutrient dense of them all – but in Australia, our modern way of life has lost its connection with the ‘nose-to-tail’ way of eating, and we tend to avoid organ meats simply because we’re not accustomed to it, favouring muscle meats for their flavour.

Beef liver is a rich source of Vitamin B12, Vitamin A, Folate, Heme Iron and B Vitamins (plus so much more) offering healthy immune function, energy, endurance, recovery, muscle growth, healthy hair and skin, good vision, improved mental function, gut and digestive system health, and overall wellbeing.

Cell Squared’s beef liver is organically sourced from ancient remote grasslands across Australia with the capsules themselves easy to swallow; alternatively you can also break them open and sprinkle on top of food. Simply take 4 to 6 per
day with a meal or snack, and you’re done. The powder, on the other hand, is a creative way to get liver into your diet, and Cell Squared’s website has a range of recipes you can whip up to sprinkle a teaspoon of it on.

Essentially, a teaspoon of Beef Liver goodness goes beautifully on top of meals like beef stew, lamb shanks and meatballs, and also smoothies, soups and stir fries. This is a brilliant way to add nutrients into recipes (or sneak into the family’s meals whilst they’re not looking, but keep that on the down low; don’t get me into trouble),
and technically the only difference between the capsules and the powder is that one version is encapsulated within a high quality bovine gelatin capsule.

VITALS
RRP Organic Grass-Fed Beef Liver Capsules $49.95 AUD
RRP ACO Certified Organic Grass-Fed Beef Liver $59.95 AUD
WEB cellsquared.com.au

20 WINNERS OF BROOKS CASCADIA 17 TRAIL SHOES CONTEST

20 WINNERS OF BROOKS CASCADIA 17 TRAIL SHOES CONTEST

We are pleased to announce the winners of the Brooks Cascadia 17 Trail Shoes Contest. Twenty subscribers to the Trail Run Magazine Issue #48 in Australia and New Zealand had the opportunity to win these highly sought-after shoes worth $259.95 each. We would like to congratulate the following winners:

  • Brianna A. from Perthville, NSW, Australia
  • Juanita D. from Nhulunbuy, NT, Australia
  • Alicia K. from Woodlands, WA, Australia
  • Tri B. from Kenneth, NSW, Australia
  • Geoff R. from Holland Park West, QLD, Australia
  • Stuart H. from Brunswick, VIC, Australia
  • Michael R. from Pennant Hills, NSW, Australia
  • Melinda F. from Mittagong, NSW, Australia
  • Luke G. from Beacon Hill, NSW, Australia
  • Adrian S. from Golden Square, VIC, Australia
  • Bernie M. from Lyneham, ACT, Australia
  • Shane T. – Chapel Hill, QLD, Australia
  • Tam J. – Dromana, VIC, Australia
  • Royall M. – Gunnedah, NSW, Australia
  • Shawtima R. – Gaven, QLD, Australia
  • Paul N. – Wallaroo, NSW, Australia
  • Michael A. – Golden Bay, WA, Australia
  • Caroline H. from Hillcrest, AUK, New Zealand
  • Ursula S. from Upper Moutere, TAS, New Zealand
  • Justin M. from Karori, WGN, New Zealand

The winners will receive their prizes shortly and we look forward to seeing them out on the trails in their new Brooks Cascadia 17 trail shoes. Thank you to everyone who participated in the contest and congratulations to the winners!

VITALS
RRP: $259.95 AUD
WEB brooksrunning.com.au

WE TESTED: The Nebo Mycro 500+ Headlamp & Cap Light

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

NEBO MYCRO 500+ HEADLAMP & CAP LIGHT

STILL LOOKING FOR THE IDEAL HEADLAMP BUT STRUGGLING TO FIND SOMETHING WORTH THE MONEY? 

This particular brand, NEBO, specialises – and I mean specialises – in products of the illumination variety. I’m talking headlamps, flashlights, work lights, lanterns and pocket lights. For trail runners though, hands-free is what’s we’re after and NEBO’s Mycro 500+ is what you want when it comes to delivering 500 lumens of brightness that puts the light right where you need it.

Reviewer: Kate Dzienis
Who Dat? Trail Run Mag editor & senior journo
Experience: Running for more than a decade
Type Of Runner: Mindful

All my headlamps in previous years have had batteries required, but this little beauty is a rechargeable wonder with up to 3 hours of run time. And when I say small, I mean it’s the perfect size without compromising the power that comes from it (2.85” long and 1.2” high), with two modes to choose from – spot and flood light, each with its own set of detailed usage; in spotlight mode, you can go from Turbo (500 lumens, 30sec intervals, 90m) and High (200 lumens, 1hr, 60m) to Medium (100 lumens, 2hrs, 42m) and Low (30 lumens, 3hrs, 23m), whilst in floodlight mode you’ve provided High (200 lumens, 25min, 24m), Low (50 lumens, 1hr, 11m) and Red (25 lumens, 35min, 8m).

Raining? Not a problem-o. It’s water and impact resistant.

What I do love about the NEBO Mycro 500+ is that it comes with a cap clip so instead of sliding the headlamp through the strap and using it that way, it’s now easier to wear if you like having a hat – simply slide it off the strap and clip it onto the very front of your visor/bill. The integrated tilt makes this even easier whereby it’s just a case of adjusting the light up or down to suit your preference.

Whilst out on my winter early morning runs, the Mycro 500+ didn’t feel like it was pushing or digging into my forehead when I used it in its strap configuration, but to be honest I absolutely love the cap clip as I’m a hat user.

Definitely a go-to product for illuminating the trails and making early morning, late evening or night runs feel a lot safer.

VITALS
RRP $79.95 AUD
WEB nebotools.com.au

A Tale of Mates, Mountains & Mud

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

WRITTEN BY: BEN WILKINSON
IMAGE: BEN WILKINSON

TRAIL RUN MAG WOULD LIKE TO WELCOME BEN WILKINSON FOR HIS CONTRIBUTION PIECE TO TRM49

A TALE OF MATES, MOUNTAINS & MUD

Want to hit a spectacular and challenging trek that will take your breath away and allow you to push yourself in an environment that’s sturdy, hardened and vigorous? Tasmania’s got the Western Arthurs Range, which encapsulates quartzite peaks, hanging valleys and glacier-carved lakes with plenty of rocky climbs, mud and rain. Tasmanian Ben Wilkinson, together with mates Jon Minnebo and Francois Fourie, tackled the inspiring trek earlier this year, and he recaps the adventure which will was full excitement, grandeur, inclement weather, and savoury snacks (but only at the end!).

***

At 7am on 15 April 2023, the GC Running Team which consists of Jon Minnebo, Francois Fourie and myself, set on an adventure into the wild Southwest of Tasmania that would see us start at Scott’s Peak carpark, traverse the Western Arthurs Range from Moraine A-K and finish back at the carpark. All up it should be 60km which we thought would take about 18hrs.

To most people this sounds either dumb, crazy or both. To us, this was the best fun we could have on two legs.

Spirits were high, and with loads of laughs and a dose of nervous tension, we were soon on the trail. A mix of thoughts filled my mind: Am I capable of this? Maybe I’m biting off more than I can chew. This will be awesome, of course I can…round and round the merry go went.

Not long after we started so did the mud. Tasmania’s Southwest is renowned for muddy trails and the Western Arthurs were in force, a week’s worth of consistent rain making things wet and slushy. Kind of like running through mac and cheese all day. However, this just added to the entertainment and there was more slipping and sliding than a day at Wet N Wild.

After passing through Junction Creek campground the range comes into view and there’s an overwhelming sense of the challenge ahead. We arrived at the base of Moraine A, which is the main access to the range, and with 700-800m elevation over 2.4km it’s a juicy little number. The views across Lake Pedder are breathtaking, just like the strong slap in the face from the southerly winds coming straight off the Southern Ocean when you arrive at the top.

The jog past Lake Fortuna through to Lake Cygnus is beautiful, and the landscape changes dramatically. Everything is massive and looks like a scene out of The Lord of the Rings. Glacier lakes, slabs of quartz, and views out to Bathurst Harbor are on the menu for the rest of the day. It’s a real feast for the senses.

After Lake Cygnus there was some up-and-downing before the section between Mt Sirius and Mt Orion comes into view. This is one of my favourite ridgelines in Tasmania. It sticks out like crazy and can be seen for miles.

After a nice bit of huffing and puffing, and the stunning Square Lake, we crested a ridge to behold one of the most spectacular landscapes I have ever witnessed, Lake Oberon – the crown in the Western Arthurs and Tasmania’s Southwest.

It was the perfect spot for a quick bite to eat and the only rest we had that day, apart from taking pics. A mention goes out to Jon here who, with a completely straight face, pulled out his ‘curried egg’ in white bread sandwich. I won’t go into this but for those of you who know what exercising on empty stomachs can do to your digestion, curried egg is an interesting choice. Well played, Jon. Well played.

The rain started during lunch and was now coming down in sideways sheets but we kept moving. The descent into Oberon was a nice little scramble and by now the rain had soaked everything. The section from Oberon to High Moor took a long time. Even though the distance travelled is only +/- 4km it took 3-4hrs (with a heavy pack on this is a full 8-9hr walk).

CONTINUE READING THIS STORY – AND MORE – IN TRAIL RUN MAG #49 (NOV-DEC 2023). 

Move It Or Lose It

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

WRITTEN BY: PAIGE PENROSE
IMAGE: KAMIL SUSTIAK, MATT WISEMAN/LE BENT, BOEN FERGUSON

TRAIL RUN MAG WOULD LIKE TO WELCOME THE NORTH FACE ATHLETE PAIGE PENROSE FOR HER CONTRIBUTION PIECE TO TRM49

MOVE IT OR LOSE IT

As kids, we learn that ‘movement’ is associated with one of two things – competition or exercise, and we never really good a full understanding about how we can continue to incorporate daily incidental movement into our lives. The North Face athlete Paige Penrose, a trail runner currently studying and racing in cross country and track & field, provides a detailed contribution on the importance of keeping people included in everyday activities because as she writes…‘Unless you’re fortunate to land in a family that incorporates movement without thought into daily life, it quickly becomes dependent on participation in specialised programs that direct you into development pathways and competition structure.’

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“Sport? Why would I play sport? That’s something kids do.”

Those words have played on my mind ever since my mother uttered them when reflecting on a patient’s response to her suggestion of incorporating daily movement into their lifestyles. At the time, I didn’t think I liked sport; or more to the point, I didn’t think I was good at it. I never considered myself to be one of the ‘sporty kids’. In hindsight, I also went to a very small primary school where at least one kid from each year group was competing at a national level in something. Perhaps not a fair relative baseline from which to assess my abilities.

I didn’t know what to do with those words and despite not allowing myself the label of being a ‘sporty kid’, I remember thinking ‘Well, thank goodness I’m still a kid’.

When I started high school, the incidental movement and games that occupied every morning tea and lunch break in primary school abruptly disappeared in place of small huddles of cross legged conversation. While the school didn’t have space for big fields, we had a basketball court and our back gate opened onto a sizable public reserve. Still, 1200 girls remained seated, enthralled in the often inconsequential topic of the day, or month if it was a particularly salty season of life.

We had sport once a fortnight. When you reached Year 11, things got serious. Perhaps when we needed it most, the designated sports period of our timetables was replaced by class or free periods for study. We were to fully dedicate ourselves to the HSC, which I haven’t thought about since the day I finished it. So much for the grandeurs it was depicted to carry, that my entire schooling was to lead to.

We had sports teams. You could play soccer, netball, hockey, touch football, athletics among others, but were you at a state representative level already to warrant a place on the team? No? Too bad.

Very, very quickly almost all forms of movement came to serve one of two purposes. Competition or exercise. We heard about keeping an active lifestyle and maintaining our wellbeing as school and life became more and more stressful. But how do you do that? What is wellbeing? What does my body say? What do I feed it? How do I move it?  

CONTINUE READING THIS STORY – AND MORE – IN TRAIL RUN MAG #49 (NOV-DEC 2023).