Kielder Marathon

MadbeeMadbee ✭✭✭

Anyone doing this one this year?  I can't find a thread for it anywhere, but sure there must be some others!  I have chosen it for my first marathon (potentially a bit stupid I know), but it looks so lovely and isn't too far for me to travel so I have bitten the bullet and decided it's the one my heart wants to do!

If anyone wants to share my trials, panic and overexcitement in the run-up do feel free!



  • I am interested and have been looking at it but can't work out just how hilly it is.  Do you know the paths around the lake? Undulating can mean anything really so not sure just how hard it will be?!

  • MadbeeMadbee ✭✭✭

    I don't know first hand what it's like, but I'm told that undulating is a good description!  It is around the edge of the lake with a couple of short climbs to look down on it, but they are all quite short I believe.  I guess it depends where you have done your training how hard it will be, but if you've trained in hilly areas it's quite do-able (I'm told!).  It's definitely not a fell run!

  • I am still not sure!  I do train on hills but have just done the London marathon (first one) and it was fine - but I think because we do have hills then the flat London route was okay.  Not sure how I would have coped with hills - even short ones - beyond 15/16 miles!

    What time are you hoping to do it in?

  • There is no doubt that Kielder is an "interesting " course image

    It really does undulate pretty consistently, but there is nothing scary as part of the idea of the path was to make it accessible to  as many people os possible, and also bikes.

    That means that there is nothing really steep or long and a good surface throughout. I thought it a very well organised event, if rather crowded at the start.


  • Thanks for that - is the path tarmac or rougher - ie stony? Just thinking of what shoes to wear.

  • MadbeeMadbee ✭✭✭

    It's a mix of tarmac and 'trail', though not a lot of tarmac I don't think.  I'm aiming for between 4 and 4:30 I think - I'm not sure where on that spectrum I'm going to fall as never done a full marathon before.  I guess it depends on how training goes as to what I aim for. How did you do in London, Torquayrunner?

    Ian, thank you for your input, you've reassured me a bit too!  I'm impressed with all the info from the organisers I must say, and it just looks such a stunning place to run - I'm sure the price of a few slopes is worth it for the views!  And of course, for every up there must be a down!

  • I would say that it is very much a road shoe course. It isn;t stony or what anyone would call "technical".

    It is a hard pcaked surface and the only issies I have had in the times I have run on it arew if the weather has been poor in the lead up and bikes have rutted the top a bit, but even then it has still been very good.

    From memory, apart from a bit near the start/finish and over the dam, you won;t see much tarmac.

  • Thanks for that Ian.  Madbee - did London in 4.34 - and felt fine so aiming  for a quciker time next time round.  Have really improved my speed over the last few months so keen to carry that on and with another marathon training period feel I could get that time down to 4.20 at least.

    Hardest thing about London was the doding around other runners (and walkers) , weaving in and out the whole way round - such a different experience to the peace and quiet of training runs which is why I am so keen to do a quieter one next time.  Don't feel I need crowds to spur me on and in fact would rather get into a rhythm and zone out a bit.  Hence - Kielder.  Not booked though as so far away and so far off need to be sure to commit to the cost of it all. But very interested and am looking into the cost of accomodation etc.

  • I'll be there again hopefully. I have a place and I hope to be there on the Saturday too.

    I've run it twice and had the pleasure of commentating last year.

    Probably the friendliest race I've done, Not many spectators but thosewho do come out are very supportive to everyone.

    It's hard paths all the way round. I've run it in road shoes with no problems at all.

    The course undulates all the way round with many steep ups and downs. A couple of sections are advised as being better to walk than run (tactical walks is the oficial line on the web site image)

    The views are stunning at every turn.

    One piece of advise I'd offer to everyone. Don't go to this one chasing a good running time. It's not a fas course at all.

    But I'm sure you'll have a great time. I always do

  • MadbeeMadbee ✭✭✭

    How's it going folks?  Anyone else signed up for it?  I'm getting excited now - I know it's going to be tough, but I've been training on hills, and did my first 20 miler last week.  A few more, and I'm sure I'll be raring to go!


  • Hi Madbee. Very haphazard training for me hampered by an extended holiday. Still I'm looking forward to the run. Not done nearly enough on hills so it's going to come as a complete shock to me. Only one month to go. Bring it on.



  • Morning all

    I am in for this one too, was mainly looking for a Scottish marathon to fit in in Oct/Nov, then I spotted this and as its only just over the border, would be rude not to image.

    I have the Lakeland Trails Ultra this weekend, which will give me 3wks to recover and get the legs back working again to tackle this. Needless to say I will not be looking for a fast time on this one, but will plan to enjoy a nice plod round looking at the scenery image.

    Does anyone know where the park and ride is located, and how early we need to be there? Couldn't find much info on this on the website.

  • There is some new information added to the website today for those interested image.

    And we should be getting our race packs sometime this week.

    Happy taper!

  • Yay, I have some mates in here! image  I'm unhappily tapering at the moment - missing my long runs image  Can't wait to do it, I've loved training and done lots of hill work.   No intentions of chasing a fast time as it's my first marathon, but I'm looking forward to the scenery and enjoying the run.  Will be chasing the postie up the road this week for my race pack!

  • Race pack is here!  Squee!!  *bounce*

  • Yep got mine too image.

    Save some energy for next week Madbee - remember we are on taper image.

  • image Madbee hope it goes well just in case try to cut out the beer this week both because it will make a slight difference and also because that first pint/glass of wine will taste all the sweeter after the race.

    Good luck chuck image

  • Thanks Cake, will take your advice after tonightimage  

  • image Shocking kids these days. image

  • MadbeeMadbee ✭✭✭

    ;)  Shocking indeed!  

    Four days guys!  I am so excited image

  • Nearly time *boing boing boing* image

    Hope everyone is well rested and ready to go (and Madbee has come down from the ceiling, *bounce*).

    Good Luck all and remember if its your first one, don't start off too fast in all the excitement imageimage!

  • MadbeeMadbee ✭✭✭

    I am resting on the ceiling, is that ok..?

    I'm twiddling my thumbs today, desperate to go and do something active, but I fell off a horse earlier and don't want to push my luck attempting anything else in case I hurt myself this time!  image

  • Oh dear Madbee, be careful!

    Horses and marathons don't mix image!

    The desperation to be active is a good sign - it means you are rested and ready and will have a great run image.

  • image So chuck fancy some sort of race report so we can have a party and say well done you?

  • MadbeeMadbee ✭✭✭

    Haha, I will Cake, it was just a bit of a blur to be honest!  I loved it though image  One of my club-mates fancies doing it next year, so may well be back...  Official time 4:18:59 - happy with that!  How was it for you Tigerspaw?

  • Well done Madbee - great time for that course.

    I thought that was quite a hard marathon course overall, but exceptionally well organised and the amount of goodies at the end was like Christmas Day - people just kept piling stuff into my arms image. The bus transfers all ran impressively smoothly and the park and ride was easy to find. Also impressed with the amount of volunteers / spectators out on the course, quite unusual on a trail marathon to see that many people.

    Had a good fairly solid run for most of it, but froze up going over the dam at the 18m point when the wind changed direction and I found it hard to get going with soaking wet legs. Hip was starting to seize up from all the steep descents (I have had some ITBS issues this year), mashing the legs with the constant changing up and down. Thankfully I picked things up into the 20's and by the time we were back into the forest I began picking people off over the last 4miles that had passed me earlier, and ended with a good strong finish. Lots of people looked like their legs were completely stiff and frozen up in the wind and rain.

    Finished in 4hr 33m, had been aiming for 4.20-30, so happy with that result given the steep descents, the constant rain, and doing 40m up stupid-steep mountains in the Lakes only 3 weeks ago image.

    Highly recommend this race, everyone very friendly, and great to run a traffic free route, but I think the amount of 'undulations' (hills) caught a lot of people out, certainly from some of the comments I was hearing as I overtook folk over the last 4miles! Not an 'easy' marathon by any stretch.

  • image "steep descents" "'undulations' (hills)" This sounds like my kind of race. Might be tempted next year. imageimage

  • Oh I would definitely do it again - even in the mist and rain the views of the water were great. It would be even nicer to see it in its full Autumnal glory with some sunshine image.

    And as trail surfaces go, it was a good solid trail until near the end when the constant rain was turning areas to mud, but even then I've done a lot worse. None of these stony rocky bits or tree roots to trip you up that you get on the more technical trails. I was in an old pair of road shoes that are now trashed from the mud, but no problems with grip anywhere. Some people wore trail shoes, the type with the thicker soles rather than out and out fell shoes, but even this was a bit overkill really.

    Only the 4th year they have ran it, and so quite low key really, but sometimes that is the best way, and the support / marshalling was quite amazing for a 'middle of nowhere' race.

  • I thought it was fantastic. None of the hills were stupidly steep and needed walking but there was a lot of up and down to keep things varied. As said above the amount of volunteers was staggering. The water stations were all well crewed with a variety of water/isotonic/gels on offer. Transport, parking and logistics were excellent and a credit to the organisers.

    The route was lovely, a million miles away from my usual city marathon experience and I would welcome doing this one again.

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