‘I want to un­leash my in­ner moun­tain goat’

The Daily Telegraph - Travel - - FRONT PAGE -

Ar­riv­ing in Cha­monix is not a lit­tle in­tim­i­dat­ing. Mont Blanc looms over the French ad­ven­ture town like the Stay Puft Marsh­mal­low Man: white, mas­sive, dan­ger­ous. It doesn’t seem pos­si­ble or sen­si­ble that I’m go­ing to try to learn to trail run up it – its lower slopes at least – but that’s the aim.

Trail run­ning is the softer-on-theknees, more spir­i­tual al­ter­na­tive to pound­ing miles on the pave­ment. It’s tak­ing ex­er­cise into the wilds, em­brac­ing na­ture. You don’t need to be a moun­tain goat or Paula Rad­cliffe – a love of run­ning is the main cri­te­ria, though you should be of at least av­er­age fit­ness. Speed is not of the essence; trail runs are of­ten long, slow ex­plo­rations across di­verse ter­rain – in­clud­ing moun­tains – with lots of

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