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Derwentwater Dawdle

29-Apr-2019 Borrowdale, Lake District, UK (England)

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2 REVIEWS
Mountains Race Race Terrain
37KM / 23Miles
1 Day

DIFFICULTY Race Difficulty Beginner  

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Event Organiser
Jeff Mitchell

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Beginner

Elevation: Very little change < 500 metres. Benign running terrain, not technical.

Suitable for: First ultra runners completing a marathon or doing regular long distance running in the last six months.

Intermediate

Elevation: Increase of up to 1000 metres

Suitable for: Runners who have completed at least one ultra distance race (or similar event) or are doing long distance running (>26 miles) regularly, with elevation shown.

Advanced

Elevation: Increase of up to 1500 metres

Suitable for: Runners who have completed several ultra distances or similar events, or are doing long distance running regularly, with elevation shown.

Expert

Elevation: Increase of up to 2000 metres with some challenging climatic conditions (e.g. ice, snow, humidity or heat) and or technical terrain

Suitable for: Experienced runners who have completed at least regular ultra distances in last 12 months, or are doing regular long distance running (>50 miles) with elevation and conditions shown (where possible). Admission to these races may be subject to evidence of recent qualifying race participation and recent medical examination certificate. Check with the race organiser regarding entry requirements.

Brutal

Elevation: Increase of up to 2000 metres with very challenging climatic conditions (e.g. ice, snow, humidity, heat or at high altitude) and or technical terrain.

Suitable for: Very experienced long distance ultra runners (min 3 years’ experience) or are doing regular long distance running (>50 miles) with elevation and conditions shown (where possible). Admission to these races is often subject to evidence of recent qualifying race participation and recent medical examination certificate. Purchase of specialist kit is often recommended for these races.

Endurance - Multi-activity

Type: An ultra distance race including at least two of the following activities such as running, swimming, cycling, kayaking, skiing and climbing. It may also include different climatic conditions (eg ice, snow, humidity, cold water, mud or heat).

Suitable for: Experienced multi-skilled athletes who have trained for the different activities included in this event. Admission to these races may be subject to receipt of a recent medical examination certificate. Check with the race organiser regarding entry requirements and any specialist equipment required such as a wetsuit, skis or a mountain bike.

Global - Virtual

Type: A virtual race which can be run at any time shown on the dates shown, on any type of terrain in any country.

Suitable for: For runners from beginners to experienced as you choose your own course and challenge based on the guidelines and options set by the virtual race organiser.

Review Derwentwater Dawdle

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SarahCrunning

05:44 22-03-17

I ran this in 2017 to complete the first running of Ascend Event's fantastic triple of Four Passes, Silverdale Circuit and Derwent Dawdle. I was aware that I would probably find it tough - Four Passes was fantastic, but the technical descents are well out of my comfort zone. Silverdale was much more runnable for me and I was expecting Derwent to be somewhere in between the two. I was pretty accurate, but rain and wind made the conditions tougher than in the previous two races (although still much better than you can reasonably expect in the Lake District).

This is a fantastic route - exhilarating climbs, breathtaking scenery and plenty of variety. The Lake District is usually wet, and there is plenty of mud - some of the boggy bits are deceptively deep! There is huge amounts of wet rock - the three big ascents require some scrambling, which is tough but hugely enjoyable. The descents are slippy and not that runnable if you aren't a natural on this terrain. Many people were much faster than me on the technical terrain and found much more of it runnable than I did. This race is about knowing your strengths and weaknesses - I know that I can push myself on the climbs and overtake people but that I don't have the balance or lightness on my feet to tackle the descents as I would like and will be slow. Knowing this in advance helps me with the mental challenge and, despite being slow, I had a huge sense of achievement at the end. For me, this was harder than twice the distance on easier terrain but just as rewarding.

A few tips - whatever the forecast says the temperature is, it will feel colder when you're high up. If you do find this terrain challenging, you need to dress for the cold - there were times when I struggled to move fast enough to stay warm in the rain. The kit list is there for a reason. Navigation is straightforward if you download the GPX file or follow the route description, but it is not a marked route, so be prepared.

As with the other Ascend events, this has a friendly feel. A small, business that has reprised old LDWA routes because they are too good not to be used. You can tell that this is a venture born out of love of the area and of running/walking (the events are open to runners and walkers). It is great value with lovely volunteers, well-stocked checkpoints and a hot meal at the finish. It's a small detail, but tea in proper mugs at the start and finish works for me every time. I would highly recommend this event if you enjoy this kind of terrain. If you are less confident on technical terrain, then I would recommend a recce or a bit more experience before you decide to enter.

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dunsrunner

01:15 22-03-17

I ran this race in 2017. This was the first running from Ascend Events, who resurrected it from an old LDWA route I believe.

The entry fee was very reasonable, which included tea and toast at the start, a huge selection of food at the main checkpoint and a hot meal at the end. We were very lucky with the weather. The days before and after were very wet and windy, whilst we experienced only a few showers.

The route is very technical in places, far too technical if you are not experienced in running in the mountains. After an easy 2 miles, which served as a great warmup, we went up steeply, very steeply to the summit of Cat Bells. The views even on this murky day were stunning. The descent was very tough. Steps fashioned out of the stones were worn, wet and extremely slippy. After the checkpoint around 10 miles, the second severe climb up through the woods was long and sapping and again the descent was so tricky as to almost stop actual running. It was difficult to keep warm at times. After some welcome running, the third and final climb brought us right above Keswick. Dropping down the descent was sharp but runnable. I was then surprised to find 4 or so flat miles back to the finish.

I thoroughly enjoyed this route and would definitely go back. However, if you are new or inexperienced in this sort of thing it may be too big a step. Coming out at around 24 miles and over 4000 feet of up and down, it is easily comparable to a marathon or more in terms of effort required.

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