Wicklow People (West Edition) - - NEWS -

ON Satur­day Septem­ber 28, County Wick­low will be­come the 10th Euro­pean des­ti­na­tion to or­gan­ise an EcoTrail Trail run­ning event.

Start­ing and fin­ish­ing at Bray seafront, par­tic­i­pants will have the choice of four dif­fer­ent trail dis­tances that will take them from the shore of the Ir­ish Sea to the top of the Wick­low Moun­tains.

Ecotrail Wick­low comes with a very strong eco-re­spon­si­ble ethos and has part­nered with the Wick­low/Dublin up­lands en­vi­ron­men­tal project, Pure (Pro­tect­ing Up­lands and Ru­ral En­vi­ron­ments). Ecotrail is com­mit­ted to re­duc­ing lit­ter, min­imise en­vi­ron­men­tal im­pact and pro­mote pub­lic trans­port and are col­lab­o­rat­ing with Pure on lit­ter picks and cleanups of all the run­ning routes prior to start day.

The event will in­clude four routes, all star­ing from Bray Seafront, which will suit both novices and ul­tra-trail run­ners. Th­ese routes in­clude dis­tances of 18km, 28km, 45km and 80km, with an ex­pected 1,000 run­ners par­tic­i­pat­ing in the event.

Ian Davis, Pure Di­rec­tor, said: ‘This is the first time that this pres­ti­gious run­ning event will be held in Ire­land and Pure are de­lighted to be work­ing with Wick­low Tourism and the Ecotrail Team. It’s ex­tremely im­por­tant that both par­tic­i­pants and spec­ta­tors see the county of Wick­low, pure and pris­tine, the way it should be, and this col­lab­o­ra­tion will en­sure that there is no un­sightly lit­ter and dump­ing tar­nish­ing the ‘Gar­den of Ire­land’.

Fred Verdier from Wick­low County Tourism be­lieves that part­ner­ing with Pure is a ‘per­fect fit’ for the Ecotrail Wick­low and he added that a num­ber of lit­ter picks will the ar­ranged in the com­ing weeks.

‘Em­brac­ing the Ecotrail con­cepts of­fers a fan­tas­tic op­por­tu­nity to look af­ter our Wick­low trails,’ said Mr Verdier. ‘We are com­mit­ted to pre­pare our routes prior to our event in Septem­ber, but also main­tain our ef­forts through­out the year.’

The var­i­ous op­tional trails will take par­tic­i­pants to some of Wick­low’s most scenic lo­ca­tions in­clud­ing Bray Head, the Kill­rud­dery Es­tate, Bel­mont Es­tate, the Lit­tle and Great Su­gar­loaf, Pow­er­scourt Wa­ter­fall, the Wick­low Way, Lough Tay (Guin­ness Lake) view­ing point and all the way to Round­wood and the Vartry Reser­voir.

On­line reg­is­tra­tion for the 28km, 45km and 80km races are now open, with reg­is­tra­tion due to open soon for the 18km event. Fur­ther de­tails are avail­able at wick­low.ecotrail.com/en

Ecotrail was first or­gan­ised in Paris ten years ago with the ob­jec­tive to con­nect the city with the out­doors with a stun­ning finish on the first floor of the Eif­fel Tower. The Ecotrail con­cept has been recre­ated around var­i­ous cities in Europe and is now held in Reyk­javik, Oslo, Stock­holm, Brussels, Geneva, Florence, Madrid and Fun­chal (Madeira).

Ian Davis of the PURE Mile Project with Fred Verdier of Wick­low Tourism, Clara Jenk­in­son and Rene Borg of Eco Trail Wick­low

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