FAQ’s for New Members
FAQs for new members and runners who would like to join our Tuesday evening runs
We are a fell running club, and we are happy to welcome visitors and potential new members. We want everyone to enjoy their run, so here is some key information and some FAQs which will hopefully help you to decide if we, and our Tuesday evening runs, are right for you. Look at the tables for quick reference.
The Steady Group:
In summer, this is usually a run between 1 – 1 ½ hours on the fells (more likely trails/roads in the winter). It is important to say that this is not a guided or led run; it is a group of runners who wish to run together at a steady pace. Although there will usually be somebody who decides on the route and helps on navigation, you will be responsible for yourself in terms of carrying appropriate kit (read below) and your ability to read a map, know where you are and how to get back to where you started. This could be in the dark or in fog/cloud.
In winter, this group often join in with the faster groups, as many routes are more structured training ‘sessions’ on fixed routes, often on the roads. Alternatively, there are usually a few members heading off on a steadier road/path/trail run too.
The Faster (and really fast!) Groups
In summer, this is usually a hard fell run of approx. 2hrs over several summits (for example: Fairfield Horseshoe, Coniston Horseshoe, Langdale summits etc.). This group often sets off as one group and then splits into two smaller groups: elite runners (winners and top places in local and national races) and strong club runners (top half the results). Again, this is not a guided or led run; it is a group of very experienced and faster runners who wish to run hard in the fells. You will be responsible for yourself in terms of carrying appropriate kit (read below) and your ability to read a map and use a compass, know where you are and how to get back to where you started. This could be in the dark or in fog/cloud.
If you live in Ambleside, a good guide is you would be capable of getting to the summit of Loughrigg from the bottom cattle grid at Pelter Bridge in around 23-30 mins.
Nobody will ever be left behind in this group, but for everybody’s safety and enjoyment you should ensure these Club runs are right for you. Contact Chris Hodgson at email@example.com if in any doubt.
A very approximate guide: If you live in Ambleside, you’ll be capable of running steadily around the Fairfield Horseshoe in 2hrs-to-2hrs 15mins or you would be capable of getting to the summit of Loughrigg from the bottom cattle grid at Pelter Bridge Park in under 23 mins to join this group (under 20 mins for the really fast group).
The faster group tend to do the structured speed endurance/hill session together as it’s designed so that everyone can work hard at their level. This does mean that it is perfectly possible for slower runners to join this session and these sessions are a great way to build speed and fitness. A slower runner would need to know the warmup route for that night’s session and either set off 10 minutes earlier to meet the group at the start of the efforts or take a more direct route to the start of the efforts. We will always make sure everyone who’s there by 6.20pm knows where the efforts will start.
Summer runs on the fells (or winter trail runs)
Regardless of the group, nearly all of our summer runs are higher fell runs and often over mountain summits so you will need to carry appropriate kit. This will mean fell shoes, full waterproofs (with taped seams), hat and gloves, a map of the area, a compass, a whistle and some food. Consider: an emergency “bivvy bag”, extra thermal top, tiny first aid kit, mobile phone. This equipment is for your safety: the weather in the hills can change rapidly, and it is vital that you are properly prepared for a situation in which you become lost, heavily fatigued or incapacitated owing to illness or injury. This suggested kit is the bare minimum, and you should carry additional kit depending upon the conditions.
Winter runs on the fells
Add more layers, consider a heavier duty jacket and trousers, waterproof mittens/gloves, more food, a decent head torch with spare batteries or back up head torch.
Winter speed endurance and hill sessions
You’ll need your usual preferred winter running kit, a waterproof or windproof jacket depending on what the weather’s doing, road or light trail shoes, hat and gloves if you get cold hands/feet and a small head torch (suitable for Under Loughrigg – Pelter Bridge road in the dark). A watch that can time/be programmed to time efforts is useful but not essential.