Saturday the 18th of March saw 16 students head out to the Pentland Hills, just south of Edinburgh, for a hill running trip led by the Hare & Hounds Running Club. The vast majority had never been out to the this beautiful area of countryside before, nor even consider run ning up a 500m+ high hill! But, buoyed by promises of good views and a casual pace, we headed out in excitement. We split into two groups, both following roughly the same 10km route: the first, slightly faster one, was lead by Alex (Men’s Captain), and the second was lead by Emily (Jogging Secretary). In both cases, there was plenty of resting at the top of hills, giving everyone a chance to regroup.
We first ran along some quite boggy trails at the foot of Allermuir Hill, where we encountered a group of pony trekkers, and also some highland coos. We then headed up Capelaw, the first proper hill, and into the centre of the Pentlands. After a run along the ridge and up Castlelaw (in some pretty nasty sleet), we headed back to climb all the way up Allermuir. It was then a case of going along another undulating ridge over to Caerketton, before descending the final, very steep, section of the hill, running past Hillend ski centre, and back to the car park.
The weather was forecast to stay dry, but alas it did not; the gentle drizzle partially clouded what are usually some wonderful views of hills stretching out for miles, and eventually turned into a downpour by the end of the run. Despite this, a great time was had by all, and it was a excellent way to spend a few hours on a Saturday morning. The home-baked brownies brought along by Australian exchange student Brendan no doubt helped too!
Many thanks to the Sports Union’s EDex program for supporting the trip, and helping some newer runners experience a part of Edinburgh they wouldn’t otherwise usually visit! The Hare & Hounds Running Club is always open to people looking to take up running for the first time: our jogging group, lead by Emily Payne, goes out twice a week for easy runs around the city centre, and is open to anyone of any ability. You can find more information on our website here.