Blue Runnings

Race Reviews, GPX files and more from North-East England

No Ego Torch Challenge – Wallington – 6.7km

on 15 February 2015


Having done a torch race the night before at Gibside, I thought I knew what to expect from this one. I was wrong. I can see now why this series is called ‘No Ego’! J & I had booked in on this one as a push distance for her, and as an intermediary between the 4km J can now run comfortably and the 10k No Ego Trail in Otterburn we’re booked in for in April. There is a strong possibility that the Trail race, despite being further in distance, may actually be a step down in difficulty just because you should be able to actually see where you’re putting your feet! This one had the terrain I would expect from a muddy trail race, with the added complication of being done with the limited visibility offered by a headtorch…

The race started through the courtyard of Wallington hall and then we were off out over the grounds – slightly bumpy and soft-grounded grass which was more effort than roads to run on, but not per-say difficult, with only about 50m you were better off walking for some half-buried masonry. From here we moved onto a well-trodden woodland trail with a few minor tree roots and then onto a proper laid-down path along the river. So far so good! Next up were the woodland tracks – tree roots and tree-stumps a-plenty! Progress through here was patchy – depth perception is much harder with a torch in the dark, as the shadows are on the opposite side to you and we nearly ended up in an inelegant heap more than once!

Having made it through the woods, albeit alternating between a walk and a jog, we headed out over the fields. The terrain flattened out a lot more and we were able to jog the first bit, but soon gave up due to the sheer quantity of mud! I don’t know if we just missed the firmer ground in the torchlight, but there were some places we were ankle deep in sticky mud and I actually lost a shoe at one point! It’s a wonder neither of us ended up in it! My poor trail shoes are filthy 😦 And so is one of my socks!!!

The fields were a big loop, which re-joined some already-covered ground back through the woods and along the river to make it back to the finish line. We did manage to get some jogging in here, between more stretches of slick mud! By this point, having slipped and slid our way round god-only-knows where in the dark we were somewhat giggley with how crazy we must be to have thought hoiking round the countryside at this time of night was a good idea and god knows what the marshals must have thought by our outbursts when finding we had to jump a muddy-banked stream to get to the last stretch of pathway!

All-in-all this was more of a mud walk for us than a run! We were right near the back (and I confess slightly smug about not being the very last) for the whole thing. I have no idea how some people managed to run this 4 mile course in under 45 minutes, I don’t think it was a best-timer for anyone but both J & I were pretty pleased with ourselves for getting round it without being caught by the sweeper! We’d bought the No Ego hoody, tech t-shirt and buff before the race and having definitely had our egos annihilated, will be wearing them with pride. Looking forward to the No Ego Trail races where hopefully we will get through at a slightly quicker min/mile pace and may be able to run more than half a km in one go!

No Ego Torch Race

GPX data available to download from my Dropbox account by following the link below:

GPX data on Dropbox

No Ego logo -

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