Mud, Glorious Mud!


Mud runs, mucky races, Beast of the East and the Snakes Pit Challenge…if you’re a running enthusiast who doesn’t mind being right in the thick of it, there are a whole heap of events coming up in the south east to test you to the limit.

The Maldon Mud Race is perhaps the quirkiest of them all, and is certainly one of the best-known mudfests around.

Some 250 participants every year face a 400 metre dash across the mud-caked riverbed of the Blackwater Estuary on the edge of the Essex Marshes.

Thick, black, oozing mud often results in entrants completing the course on hands and knees…to the delight of thousands of spectators and TV crews from as far afield as the USA and Australia.

The Maldon Mud Race started nearly 40 ago, based on a real historical event from 1,000 years previously, when the famous Battle of Maldon in 991 saw the Anglo Saxons at war with the Danes. Saxon leader Britnorth was beheaded somewhere along the River Blackwater – legend has it that his body was recovered but his head never was…and competitors today who wade through the thick sludge at low tide are said to be searching for the severed relic.

It’s a lot of fun – and a huge charity fund-raiser too. Last year more than £46,000 went to over 70 good causes.

Date: May 5th

Plenty More in Store

The 8 kilometre Tuffman Trail Run at Pippingford Park at Nutley, East Sussex, is part of the Human Race Off Road Trail Running Series in the heart of AshdownForest.

Date: February 23rd

Snakes Pit Challenge, a 5 kilometre run through the notorious Snakes Pit at Borley, Essex, with mud pits, running water and some steep – for East Anglia! – gradients.

Date: March 23rd

TrailMan Trail Run, Royal Tunbridge Wells, with 6 and 13 kilometre routes and an optional Duathlon with a 6k run and 20k bike ride.

Date: April 6th 

Mucky Races, The Gauntlet at Bures Pit, Essex, is a 5 and 12 kilometre obstacle race through mud pits and icy water, a self-proclaimed mudfest across the ‘Hills of Doom.’

Date: April 7th

Kamikaze – The Final Sortie, Pippingford Manor, Nutley, East Sussex, is a 4 and 8 mile obstacle race.

Date: May 9th

Beast of the East, CanadaHeights, Swanley, Kent is a 10k ‘hardcore’ mud race along a motocross circuit taking in muddy trails, grasslands and sandy hills.

Date: May 18th

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Copy writer Nicki Williams writes for Gear-Zone, on-line specialists in running gear and outdoor clothing and equipment

Picture source: Flickr

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