It is very exciting to announce that entries for the 2014 Marmot Dark Mountains™ are now open!
In January, earlier this year, atrocious weather brought heavy snow to much of the country. Whilst most people opted to cranked up the heating, a few select runners were testing themselves at a new mountain marathon called Marmot Dark Mountains™. This event takes the classic two-day mountain marathon format and gives it a new… darker twist. Rather than two days of running with an overnight camp in between, Marmot Dark Mountains™ packs everything into one, long winter’s night.
In the last few days entries for the 2014 event have opened. With many of the course at the inaugural event selling out, the 2014 race has added an extra score course to help cope with demand. The challenging line up of courses include Elite, A, B, C, Short Score and Long Score and promises to satisfy the full range of nocturnal deviation competitors enjoy.
The location changes each year but for 2014 the event is going to be in Northern England and is less than 1.5 hours drive from Manchester. Precise details of the event location are only revealed at the beginning of January 2014 but the event area is described by Race Director, Shane Ohly as "Absolutely fantastic. It is one the best upland areas in England and amazingly, it hasn't had a mountain marathon event for many years." He continued, "With the success of the 2013 event, new courses for 2014, an amazing area and the continued support of sponsors Silva and Marmot, I am very confident that Marmot Dark Mountains will be a big success in 2014".
In a bid to make the event open to a wider range of competitors, the organisers have reduced the difficulty of the navigation on the easiest course. Shane Ohly explains, "Based on our 2013 experience we will be making the C Course slightly easier to navigate around by only using major features and/or linear features as checkpoints on this course". For competitors hoping for an easier event he added, " Each of the other courses will get progressively harder with the Elite Course having the hardest navigation". The organisers have also confirmed that there will be a £500 cash prize for the winning elite team so competition is expected to be intense on this course.
Title sponsors Marmot have provided 30 Mini Haulers (product details here) for the first fifteen teams to enter the 2014 event. Each Mini Hauler is worth £17.00. So, get your entry in quickly and we will post you a pair of Mini Haulers!
New for 2014 will be an extra score course so that we now offer both a Long Score (10 hours) and Short Score (8 hours) course.
The location for Marmot Dark Mountains is Northern England and is less than 1.5 hours drive from Manchester. Precise details of the event location will be revealed at 12:00 on Thursday 2nd January 2014 (entries close at 20:00 on Friday 10th January). We are keeping the precise location secret because local knowledge of the event area, especially for a night mountain marathon, would be an advantage. The event area itself is absolutely fantastic... one the best upland areas in England and amazingly, it hasn't had a mountain marathon event for many years (we have had to work very hard to gain permission). For these reasons we think that Marmot Dark Mountains 2014 is going to be very special indeed. More information HERE>>>.
The event map has been specially commissioned from Harvey's and will be 1:40,000 scale with 15m contour intervals. More information available HERE>>>.
The addition of a two person Emergency Shelter / Bothy Bag / Kisu to the mandatory kit list for 2014 is new. This is because it has been noted that teams occasionally wait too long before deciding to retire or make camp in poor weather conditions, by which time their hands have become too cold and/or the weather is too poor for them to actually put up their tent. More information available HERE>>>.
Based on our 2013 experience we will be making the C Course slightly easier navigationally and only using major features (a summit cairn for example) or linear features (a stream junction or wall corner for example) on this course. Each of the other courses will get progressively harder with the Elite Course having the hardest navigation. More information available HERE>>>.
£500 Elite Prize
We are pleased to confirm that there will be a £500 cash prize for the winning elite team.
We have commissioned the sculptor who made the awesome - and somewhat gigantic - Marmot Dark Mountains trophy to make a mini version. Therefore, for 2014, we will be presenting the winning male and female team on each course with a trophy, which they shall be able to keep.