Title: North Wales Trail Running: 20 Off-Road Routes for Trail & Fell Runners
Author: Steve Franklin
Publisher: Vertebrate Publishing
Genre: Non-fiction, Outdoors, Running
Book format: Paperback
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Description: North Wales Trail Running is a comprehensive guide to off-road running across North Wales, including Snowdonia, Anglesey and into the Llyn Peninsula and the Clwyds. With 20 runs from 4km to 20.4km in length, this book is suitable for runners of all abilities.
North Wales has some of the most diverse terrain in the UK, from rocky outcrops and large cwms to steep-sided valleys and magical llyns. It is a Mecca for the adventurous runner, and home to the 104km Paddy Buckley Round. In this book, author Steve Franklin has collected together many of his favourite runs, from low-lying loops around idyllic llyns and reservoirs, to serious hands-on-knees fell runs on some of Snowdonia’s biggest mountains. Summit Snowdon, Cadair Idris and Conwy Mountain, and discover quieter corners of the country around Cnicht, the Northern Carneddau and the Crafnant valley.
Each route features clear and easy-to-use Ordnance Survey 1:25,000 maps, easy-to-follow directions, details of distance and timings, and refreshment stops and local knowledge.

*Free copy provided by publisher for review…

Review: This is a brilliant book whether you are new to trail running or not. ‘North Wales Trail Running’ is a pocket-sized book featuring twenty routes you can take, giving simple instructions and some brilliant images at the same time. The book starts with an introduction including some basic safety information for anyone going out trail running. As somebody who hasn’t tried it before this information is invaluable in not only staying safe but making sure that navigating the area is as easy as possible. The book also explains the basic rules of the countryside as well as how the book works.

North Wales Trail Running book page image one
©The Strawberry Post

Each run is given its own section in the book. The runs are all a mixture of simpler runs which are easier to navigate for beginners, to expert runs where there’s hands on knees moving in parts and where navigation skills with maps and compass become necessary. Each run in the book begins with a description of it. I loved reading these as there are mentions of things to see while running or interesting facts about the history or mythology of the area. Under the description is details of the run including how to get there, how long it should take, and where to find refreshments and toilets. There’s also key information about how difficult the run is to navigate (measured from 1-5) and how difficult it is for running (measured in mountain goats!).

Each run has it’s own directions and these are very easy to follow. I was worried, having never tried trail running, that I would get lost of confused on the descriptions, but they are all very clear and easy to understand and don’t involve a lot of technical explanations which would put a beginner off. Each run also has an ordnance survey map as well as some stunning photography of the area.

North Wales Trail Running book page image two
©The Strawberry Post

What I love about this book is how simple it is while staying informative. The maps are all easy to read and the directions and general information just make you want to go running in the area. There are also some alternate routes you can take on some of the runs and the photographs are just amazing. A lot of the photos show runners but it’s the stunning views behind them which will really make you want to go running in the area yourself. The handy pocket size of this book also makes it easy to take with you while running, the only thing which would make this even better for me if it was spiral bound as I’d love to open the book up wide without having to crack the spine.

I’ve never tried trail running before but will be giving it a go with friends when we next head to North Wales. I’m also keen to check out more books in the series so I can explore different areas around the country.

Have you ever tried trail running?  Which parts of the world would you like to go running in?  Let me know what you think in the comments below 🙂