I’m not lost I’m having an adventure

There are many clichés about following your dreams “life’s too short” “this is not a rehearsal” etc, or my personal favourite “just fucking do it”. Well that’s exactly what we’re doing, I found myself a new job near Swansea and we’re in the throws of relocating from Wiltshire to the Brecon Beacons. Searching out a life lived more outside, in beautiful countryside and maybe even at some point in the future not involving an office (or at least not everyday). Right now the reality of that move is me living in an Airbnb Monday to Friday until our house move completes in the hopefully not too distant future. Let the adventure begin!

Fuelled by the adrenaline and excitement of being here and actually bloody doing what we’ve talked about for years I decided take advantage of not having family responsibilities in the evening and head into the Brecon Beacons for an evening run. I thought I’d keep it simple to begin with, a couple of hours post work in an area where I did my navigation course 2 years ago.

With map in hand and a pack full of the essentials for running in the hills I headed up the Beacons Way from the car full of the joys of a glorious summer evening. Not knowing at that point that it would be significantly more than a couple of hours before I’d be back there again. […]

Trail running navigation

Being on gardening leave for 6 weeks has its perks, one of which is being able to spend a day in the Brecon Beacons learning all about trail running navigation and mountain running skills in general. And what a day it was, quite honestly I don’t think it’s possible to have better winter weather conditions for spending a day running around this stunning landscape. Just look at this view.

As you know I love trail running, 99% of my running is off road and while it isn’t all in such exciting places as the Brecon Beacons it is possible to find remote and interesting places to run even in Wiltshire where I live. Most of the running I do at home I know broadly where I’m going and where I am without needing to read a map, plus most of the races I do currently are on marked courses so navigation really isn’t a concern. But I want to get a bit more adventurous with my running (more of that later) and challenge myself more and one logical way to do that is to go somewhere like the Brecon Beacons to run.

Trail running navigation course

However while I’m reasonably comfortable looking at an OS map and following footpaths etc I’m not experienced enough to really read the detail of contours, or follow an unmarked route in these wilder areas. That’s where JT Expeditions come in, I found them via Twitter and duly got booked in for a day with Jake one on one to learn some trail running navigation skills and get some good advice about planning days in the hills. There really is no substitute for practical, hands on training when it comes to learning these type of skills and as it quickly became apparent Jakes huge depth of knowledge as a Mountain Leader and also mountain marathon competitor was exactly what I needed to learn.

trail running navigation

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