Category Archives: Equipment

Choosing a trail shoe

Essential features:

1. A low profile and firmer cushioning than typical road shoes: To run trails you need to be in touch with the ground, and on the softer surfaces of trails there is no need for over-cushioning.

2. Breathability: Trail runners by definition do distance and breathable fabric is very important for long term comfort. Always try before you buy by blowing through the toe box in the shop.

3. Good fit with no internal pressure points: Important in any shoe, but critical for long trail runs.

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Cobwebs and Spiders

One of most popular posts on Coolrunnings Trail and Mountain Running forum, in case you missed it: “Whilst running today through the bush I realised we need more trail runners – this has not come from some altruistic feeling of getting the nation fitter – I have purely selfish motives. I ate no less than five cobwebs today (thankfully ingesting no spiders but sampling a few spun flies) and it made me realise that even at 12pm I was the first runner to tread this Kuring gai chase trail today.

If we had more runners there would have been much more activity on this trail and I would not have had to crash through these spiders’ homes. I have devised a strategy to ward off webs which other runners in the same predicament may find helpful – a very light three foot stick waved in front whilst running anticipates and destroys any sticky obstructions – as long as the stick is light and you don’t mind looking like some tribal soothsayer laying rights then this is a highly effective remedy.

Anyone have any better solutions? Who will join my campaign to save the sticks and run the trails?


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UK Mountain Marathon Called Off In Media Storm

Many will have seen the sensationalist TV coverage. Here is the true story as it unfolded, from the daily web statements of the organiser. There are some important issues discussed in relation to self-reliance and safety. It would be great to see an event of this type in Australia – compared to adventure races, which seem to enjoy hyping risky behaviours like sleep deprivation, mountain marathons have their roots in the UK fell and mountain racing scene, with a strong emphasis on self-responsibility and demonstrated experience before entry.


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Here’s a short piece on trail gaiters from a US blog – kctrailnerds – including the link to suppliers like Dirty Girls who make them and put the profits back into trail races. Check out the Dirty Girls site for online orders of everything from plain to psychedelic gaiters, $13US a pair…