Muddy Trails (Reverse) 2015 Race Review

Check out our race review of Muddy Trials, video also available by clicking here.

Warm Up

It’s not often that the warm up gets too much attention in review, but this was certainly one of the most interesting / energetic ones. Jumping fences, farmer’s with shot guns, grenades, human tunnel crawls and a lot more. Thankfully most of these were played out and no live ammo was involved :D The warm up got everyone energised and ready to go, and was a definite crowd pleaser!

To the Start Line

Heading up to the start line I managed to secure a spot front and centre. We held there for a few minutes for the team shout outs, with the tension building as everyone got ready to go. A quick On Your Marks, Get Set, Go, and we were off!

The course starts with a woodland trail run, allowing runners to thin out a bit before we hit the first mud section - a small bog leading straight into a longer much deeper mud section, at points coming knee high. This definitely slowed the pace and got the muscles working.

A short run over a plank and onto the next portion of trail run, which led to a large muddy puddle jump. Thankfully made it across and avoided getting too muddy too early.

The course continues with trail runs through ever changing terrain including woodland sections, fields, gravel tracks, dark woods and felled trees, with plenty of muddy ditches to make things tougher. We also went through a few burns with muddy embankment climbs, rope assisted descents and some very slippy river crossings that added to the brilliant mix of terrain. The course also included a dark muddy crawl under natural foliage, which gave a short break from running.

Muddy Trials brilliantly utilised all of the natural terrain that was at their disposal.

SHREK!

Less than halfway into the run and it was time for the renowned ‘Shrek’ . . . and I have to admit, I definitely under estimated just how tough this would be. Shrek is an EXTREMELY boggy section which involved dragging yourself through a deceptively long, narrow ditch. Chest deep thick mud made wading through this section almost impossible without the use of the rope for assistance. This was the toughest, most energy zapping section of the course. Thankfully the crowd and Marshalls were doing a great job keeping everyone motivated.

Back on the trails there wasn’t much relief from the mud, with constant mud pockets popping up as I travelled through tougher, hillier terrain that included a lengthy burn run with plenty of overhead obstructions. This took me to a section of log hurdles and crawls, before again being knee deep through another burn.

Probably about 80% into the run came a flat tarmac road section – offering some easier running and a welcome break from the mud. Not for long though!

Soon we were back off road, and after a short distance came to an incredibly muddy, seemingly never ending section of the course. With already tired legs, this part proved very tough. Every time the ground seemed to harden up and I optimistically thought the worst was over, another even boggier section would appear. At times I struggled to keep my legs moving as the thick mud engulfed my legs to above knee height.

Finally we reached a water section near the end and got clear of the mud…. almost!

Having previously ran in the Craufurdland Estate, I expected the finish line to be just up ahead. This time however, the course had a few extra surprises and instead detoured away from the castle and down to another river crossing. Legs now aching, I faced some further punishing hill runs and terrain.

A final turn and I could see the finish line was just up ahead. With some support from the crowd I found an extra surge of energy, managing to sprint over the line in 27th position.

The only minor criticism of the race was that in one downhill field section of the race, the signage was a bit lacking, and cause some confusion for a couple of runners. A minor blip.

Overall it was a brilliant day and awesome challenge, and definitely lived up to its muddy reputation. We will definitely be back!